Vail rugby has Goose for dinner
BRECKENRIDGE – The Blue Goose was cleaned, stuffed and roasted Saturday afternoon at Kingdom Park.The visiting Vail Rugby Football Club feasted on Breckenridge to the tune of a 56-5 stomping. Tries came from al corners – including two each from Tom Vallentine and Matt Palmer – leaving the Blue Goose muttering to themselves, Vail players and the referee.”It was difficult because we had a few call outs again on Tuesday(‘s practice),” Vail coach Scott Blair said. “But I think everyone played really well. It was good to see some of the fringe players come in. We’re going to get stronger as we get more people to practice and start to get a game plan. I was a little bit disappointed in the last 10 minutes the way things went, but we played some good rugby and scored some good tries. I was pleased.”Adjustments
Players out of position was the theme for the day, but it really didn’t seem to faze the Vail 15. Greg Tarpey, in just his second game at outside center, booted the ball to Cameron Turner for Vail’s first try.Vallentine moving from scrum half to fullback was another twist in Steve Blair’s lineup.”It was something definitely different, not having played much fullback,” Vallentine said. “But you get a few more opportunities in the open field, so I quite enjoyed it.”Vallentine was also busy filling in as the team’s kicker. He converted after a Ryan Kirkman try to make it 12-0. Vallentine was 5-for-8 on conversions and also had two booming penalty kicks in the first half.The Blue Goose mounted its best try of the day after that, but tighthead prop Cabal Yarne had a try-saving tackle on the doorstep. That was one of many solid efforts from Vail’s front pack which dominated scrums and lineouts.
“The pack worked out all right,” captain and loosehead prop Will Mansour said. “We had a lot of guys playing out of position. Cable was up playing prop. Damien came in in the second row, an unnatural position for him. We got a winger to play flanker. We put something together. Brandon Farmer (McDonald) in the lineouts, that kid’s insane. He can go up and get any ball. It worked out well.”The backs run wildWith the big men churning, the backs went wild. Palmer had the first of his two to make it 22-0. Leading 25-0 at the break, Vail started the second half with a textbook lineout. Scrum half Jason Perez took it out of the pile and the backs took it out wide – Perez to Turner to Sean Meehan to Vallentine to Palmer and five more points.Vallentine scored the next two for the Blue and White.
“It was after a fair amount of scrappy play, actually. Tarpey just running off of Cameron made a bit of space,” Vallentine said of his first try. “I just backed him up on the inside. It was very unselfish of Tarpey to give me the ball.”The sound you just heard was a lot of people associated with the Vail RFC getting a big chuckle out of that.By the time the saintly Tarpey touched down, Vail was cruising with a 49-5 lead. Meehan scored Vail’s eighth and final try in the waning minutes.By and large, Vail stayed out of the extracurriculars associated with this series. Blair gave credit to Mansour and the team’s other senior players for staying above the fray.”You try to warn them. You misquote the ref several times to keep the boys in line,” Mansour joked. “But you just watch out for Johnny (Barker-Goldie), little South African Johnny because he’s the chippiest one of the bunch. If you keep him in line, everyone seems to follow through. It’s just keeping it at a decent level, not sinking down to their level.”
LineoutsIn all fairness to Barker-Goldie, he was just an irritant to Breckenridge, taking the Blue Goose out of its game. … Ribs: Greg Ridl missed Saturday’s game with sore ribs. Rib injuries also took out Kirkman and Barker-Goldie. … Jason Bent returned to action against Breck Saturday. … Vail had a bye on its schedule for next week, but with the original season opener against Glenwood Springs snowed out June 4, the Blue and White will host the Defiance Saturday at 3 p.m. … With the win Vail upped its record to 2-0. … International scores: South Africa 30, France 30 (ouch) and Lions 30, Otago 19. England faces Canada and the United States has Argentina today in the Churchill Cup. Australia and New Zealand had byes. Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 614, or email@example.com.Vail Colorado