Vail Rugby readies for Breck |

Vail Rugby readies for Breck

“Will had is own special way of making us recover by doing commando tactics the first day we came into training,” Vail player-coach Fred Waititi said. “He had them sprinting laps and was drilling them. It was pretty hard. It helped bring us down of the mountain pretty quickly.”

Mission accomplished, apparently. After that 40-21 win over the Gents and a well-deserved week off, the Blue and White takes to the pitch against the Breckenridge Blue Goose Saturday at 3 p.m. at the Vail Athletic Field. The fixture against its Vail Pass rival should serve Vail as an opportunity to knock off some rust and ready itself for the Ski Town Tournament in Aspen July 27-28.

“I think by the time the weekend came around, we were ready for a game. Another one would have been good to keep the momentum going that we’ve been building. But we used the time productively,” Waititi said.

“Mainly, we’re working on lifting up the tempo, which we’ve been trying to do all year, and increasing their stamina. That’s been quite taxing on the lungs. but we’re getting there. it’s something we’re not used to. We’ve just got to work on it.”

Saturday’s game will be Vail’s first in the friendly confines since a June 22 thrashing of Missoula, Mont.

“It’s going to be nice to run out on our own track again,” Waititi said. “We’re a bit spoiled by the pitch we’ve got to run around on.”

Vail enters with a perfect 5-0 mark, while Breck is 1-2-2. The Blue Goose’s win came in a rout of Steamboat and its ties came against Colorado Springs and the Highlanders. Vail swept the season series last year, beating Breck at Kingdom Park 43-19 and 55-0 at 8,150 feet.

Breakdown Balls: Head coach Nick Trimble is expected to return to the club July 25 for the Ski Town finals. He has been back in New Zealand attending to family matters. … Speaking of New Zealand, the All-Blacks started Tri-Nations play last weekend with a 12-6 win over Australia. Saturday morning at 1:30 a.m., New Zealand faces South Africa on Fox Sports World (Ch. 613 on the dish). … The team is planning on postgame barbeque, but there’s apparently one hitch, according to club president Scott Marino. “If anyone knows where our barbeque is, it would certainly make things easier. It was stolen out of the VRD shed and we don’t know where it is. If anyone knows where it is or wants to donate a barbeque, it would be greatly appreciated,” he said. “The Vail Rugby BBQ hotline is 479-9917.”

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