The VRC Prem Reserves side thrilled a home crowd at Brockton this past Saturday by putting an absolute licking on the cross-bridge rival Capilanos, scoring 39 points and allowing none.
It looked pretty even early, as the sides handled each other’s attacks around mid field, and didn’t let each other get anything started. The Caps earned a penalty in range in the 12th minute, kicked for points, but were unable to slot it.
The Rowers attack worked itself into position in the 23rd minute, where veteran backliner, and recent addition to the forward pack at flanker Morgan Brinson found some space outside and gained the line, but ran out of the back of the endzone before grounding the ball, having apparently misread the field markings.
Tthe Rowers attack picked up right were it left off after fielding the resulting kick, pushing the Caps D back with hard phases until it sprung Brinson again, who put it down in the corner (and in bounds), to put his team on the board 5-0 in the 27th minute.
Brinson would add another try for good measure four minutes later in a crowd-pleaser; up the sideline through space, using a sharp step to make tacklers miss, and putting it down close to the middle. Fly half Duncan “DJ” James successfully kicked the conversion, and added another penalty just before half time to make it 13-0 Rowers after 40 minutes.
In an emotional final game for Rowers Reserves 8th man Niall McDonough, the Rowers pack dominated all day. A veteran front row featuring Chris Seyler, Gregory “Gus the Bus” Crowe, and “Newfie Rob” Spearing used its weight and experience to win their own ball consistently, and push the Caps off of theirs. In the second second half the Capilanos, apparently short of qualified personnel, requested uncontested scrums.
The Rowers kept the pressure on in the second half, as a high-motor line by James made a lane for new Rowers standout Center James “Hooey” Sheehan, who got close, but was dropped just shy of the goal line in the 42nd minute.
They widened the lead in the second half on the attack off of set piece that sprung fullback Colin O’Brian, who couldn’t be caught in space. A successful conversion made it 20-0 Rowers after 47′.
From there, the Reserves made a track meet out of it. Center Josh Sellars, who had been gaining key open-field yards all day, found pay dirt on a run up the outside to make it 25-0 in the 55th minute.
O’Brian got sprung out wide on a long pass from DJ in the 62nd minute, and was awarded a penalty try after the pursuit was ruled to have dragged him down with a high tackle. 32-0
Veteran back row forward Quinn Cowie threatened at the Caps goal line in the 71st minute, only to have it turned over on a penalty at the breakdown. The Capilanos nearly got on the board in 74th minute, but ran into a BIG open-field tackle from Brinson that stopped their momentum and preserved the Rowers’ shutout.
Long time Rower recurring character Lendl Magiscop, who came off the bench at loose-head prop Saturday, would cap the parade off with a strong run through would-be tacklers up the outside, on a great line at great pace, to score the final try in the 76th minute. A successful conversion made it 39-0.
The win makes the Reserves 2-1 on the year. They’re next in action at home this coming Saturday, October 1st. After the Seattle Saracens informed the Rowing Club that they will not be able to field a Reserves side as scheduled, The Rowers have set up a rematch against the Maralomas, who are eager to avenge the 28-14 home loss they dropped to the Rowers September 10th at Connaught.
Early kickoff for this one – 11 am at Brockton.
More pictures from the Reserves and Prems Caps Games in the Gameday Gallery.