by Mitch Jagoe
For those of you that may have been associated with the Oaks rugby program for a while, may remember my weekend recaps. It’s been awhile since I have done one and it’s time to start. At least for this week……so grab a cup of, or a bottle of your favorite and sit back and enjoy.I want to start by sending a BIG THANK YOU to Rental Guys of Chico for the donation of the lift for filming and the chairs for the post-match social area!! If any of you are looking to rent something, PLEASE frequent Rental Guys of Chico on Nord Ave!!!
OK, during this past week’s rugby day, the Chico Oaks Rugby Football Club hosted both Mother Lode Rugby and Gridley rugby in U-10, U-12, Middle School Girls, Middle School Boys and High School girl’s rugby. Our Chico Black Oak JV and Varsity teams hosted the Christian Brother Falcons from Sacramento.
The day started with both the Red Oak middle
school boys and girls on the pitch. I had the privilege of being the referee of the first boys match, Chico vs. Mother Lode. The game was close throughout, but Chico prevailed at the end with great play from Chico ruggers, Dylan Jepson, Bryce Darlington, Odin Moddy, Colin Bailey, Julian Beeler, Colby Cramer-Hicks, James Webster and Zach Willingham! I think this group of guys has REALLY benefited from practicing with the Black Oaks. Well done boys! Receiving Man of the Match honors were Bryce Darlington and Zach Willingham.
The Red Oak girls had their hands full with a MS girls team from Mother Lode that were skilled and well organized. Our girls fought hard and came away with smiles on their faces! For Madison Hurd, Zoe Bauer, Riley Snodgrass, Isabelle Vallejo and Contessa Whittaker, another day of great rugby and comradery! It was a win, win! Contessa Whittaker and Madison “Mad Dog” Hurd were named the Women of the Match for the Red Oak Ladies.
Now the day gets fun. Any time you get the “ankle biters” on the pitch you are in for a good time….! Our U-10’s/White Oaks and U-12’s/Gray Oaks are a lot of fun and have turned in to fierce competitors thanks to Coaches Alex, Bill, Will and Jake! Each of these teams took it to their opponents on the day scoring lots of tries and smiling all the way to the post-match social! White Oak players of the match were Ben Buckshot and Cameron Hunter. Gray Oaks bringing home the honors were Joey McKellar and Solar Parry.
Our Wild Oaks girls high school team kicked off at noon and yours truly was yet again blowing the whistle and making sure the girls were safe and having fun! While the score wasn’t indicative of how hard fought the match was, all the girls kicked butt and played incredibly passionate! Your players of the match for the Wild Oaks were Sabrina Tuitele and Annika O’Connell.
Next up were the JV Black Oaks. I gotta tell you all, when the Christian Brothers JV team came in to the facility, my first thought was, “why is their varsity here so early?” Turns out, their JV team were just REALLY big. Our JV battled! This was the best match of the day. I think there were 3 or 4 lead changes and if not for a questionable yellow card and some inevitable cramps, our boys may have come out on top! The final was 27-19 to CB, but again, the Black Oaks showed once again their maturity not only in their level of play, but in a tough loss the boys bounced back and showed the true spirit of the sport in the sportsmanship while participating in the post-match social! Thanks to you all. I can’t wait until you are varsity Black Oaks!!!! Man of the match honors on the day went to Fernando Alejo and Ty Abrams. Good job gents, well deserved.
The final match of the day had a bit of revenge factor to it. Last year a very young Black Oaks team travelled to Sacramento to take on Christian Brothers. Let’s just say CB got the best of us…….!? To say the least! Today was a different story. CB was well organized and big and fast. My Black Oak boys played our game plan to PERFECTION!
Pick and jam when it was there, some strategic kicking, rucking, hard runs with good support and a desire to keep our winning streak alive! Given this was the one match that I was able to watch from start to finish, I could probably give you a play by play off the top of my head. I will spare you the details and just say the Black Oaks outscored CB 7 tries and 2 conversions to 2 tries and 1 conversion, making the final score 39-12. The Black Oak Varsity Men of the Match were our captains, Bryce Jagoe and Devin Berger.
Finally, although not in Chico, our Mighty Oaks men’s team travelled to Reno to take on the Reno Zephyrs. Big win for the Mighty Oaks as they came away with a 49-12 D-III victory! Next up for them is a date with a tough Redwood team!
On Chico Oaks RFC alumni note, our very own Matt Whitely, now a San Diego State Aztec rugger got his first time on the pitch today! Matt said he had some good runs and had a blast! SO PROUD OF YOU MATT! Keep up the good work!
Another Saturday of RUGBY in the books. It truly was a GREAT DAY TO BE AN OAK!!!!