Vail routs Glenwood
Vail, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” When Vail Rugby Club’s outside center Enos Otieno took the pitch on Saturday, he found himself lined up against a familiar face who was also wearing No. 13.
It was fellow Kenyan Teddy Omandi, a rugger he had played with back home. He looked a little farther and saw another former teammate, Caesar Omdula.
“We all play for the same club team back in Kenya,” Otieno said.
What made the reunion even nicer for Otieno was the fact that his team who defeated Glenwood 45-22.
After the match, all three hung out together to catch up.
“I grew up wanting to be like him,” Omandi said of Otieno. “He is an icon.”
Omandi scored two tries early for Glenwood as the second put Defiance up 12-5 15 minutes into the match.
The score turned out to be the last try for Glenwood. Vail, on the other hand was just getting started and scored three straight tries, two from wingers and one from flanker Brandon MacDonald, to close out the half and go up 24-12.
Glenwood fly half Morgan Harris split the uprights on a penalty kick a few minutes into the second frame, trimming Vail’s advantage to 24-15. Vail once again answered, scoring four more tries and keeping the ball in its possession for the majority of the half.
“We knew their strengths and we knew ours and really if they don’t have the ball, their excellent backs can’t really do much with it,” said Vail coach/player Steve MacKinnon. “We had maybe 90 percent of possession and when we had the ball, we turned over a lot of ball.”
Acting quickly on a penalty, Vail snuck a try past Glenwood’s defense to take a 31-15 lead 10 minutes in the second half.
Flanker Brian Peters crashed in for another after catching a behind-the-back pass from flyhalf Greg Tarpey to take a 38-15 led. Harris then scored Glenwood’s last try on a chip kick that deflected off a handful of people before he fell on it in the try zone.
That was one of three tries for Peters, playing his first game since his grandfather died earlier this week.
“I went into the game with a full head of steam,” Peters said. “I knew that i had to play well. I had my family in my mind the wole game.”
Glenwood put together a few scoring attempts that came close in the second half, including a dive for the corner of the try zone by Omdula, but he went to touch before crossing the line.
“First half was good, we played pretty well as a team,” said Glenwood winger Rich McDilda. “Second half, we had a couple of interior breakdowns.”
The Blue and White closed out the game with another Peters try to seal the win.
Glenwood moved to 1-4 in the Mountain League, while Vail bumped up to 3-1.
Up next, Vail faces its biggest match-up of the season against undefeated Steamboat.
“My guys ” we’ve lost to Steamboat three times, all very close,” MacKinnon said. “So we are going to go out next weekend and give them one hell of a game.”