Aggies defeat Santa Clara 36-15 on the road (XVs)

Aggies arrive in California!

by Travis Normand
March 8, 2020

Note: All photos are linked from the Texas A&M Rugby Facebook page and the Old Maroon Rugby Facebook page. In other words, the photos will be visible on this site so long as they are hosted on Facebook and/or not removed by their owner.

As I wrote last week, the Aggies are now in California and have played coast-to-coast this 2019-2020 season.

On March 5, 2020, D1ARugby.com’s Chris Turner wrote the following about the Texas A&M rugby club:

The Aggies … have been one of, if not the most, well-traveled teams in the nation thus far, and will continue to do so. Including this weekend and the future, they will have played in 6 crossover matches in their 12 total tests. Texas A&M are still holding onto a Top-25 ranking due to their incredibly tough schedule, and their 6-3 record. This will be an intriguing couple matchups for the Red River squad as they take on some of California‚Äôs toughest in Cal Poly and Santa Clara.

“Round 21 Preview: Cal Hosts Invitational, Texas A&M and Army Road-Tripping, with big Mid-South Showdown,” by Chris Turner, posted on March 5, 2020, at https://www.d1arugby.com/news/round-21-preview-cal-hosts-invitational-texas-am-and-army-road-tripping-with-big-mid-south-showdown/

Today, March 8, 2020 the Aggies faced-off against Santa Clara’s rugby club at 1 p.m. PST / 3 p.m. CST.

This XVs match between A&M and SCU was played at Bellomy Field; located on the campus of Santa Clara University.

The first-half was slow-going, but the Aggies took control in the second-half and won the game 36-15. The Aggies are slated to play Cal Poly on March 10, 2020 (but I am double-checking that, as I read somewhere else that they might play on March 11). In any event, the Aggies have taken down one California Conference member, and will now be hunting for another during this their annual Spring Break Tour.

The Aggies were ranked No. 23 in the nation by D1ARugby.com before their game against SCU today, and it will be interesting to see where they end up compared to how they finish the week.

Unfortunately, I was not in attendance for this game, so the following updates are from the Texas A&M Rugby Facebook page and D1ARugby.com’s CMS system.

Game Re-Cap
Texas A&M at Santa Clara University
March 8, 2020

FIRST HALF:

  • (13th Minute) Santa Clara scored first as William Nelson (“Winger”) scored a try, putting Santa Clara up 5-0 over the Aggies;
  • Nelson’s try was followed by a successful conversion, making it 7-0 in favor of Santa Clara;
  • However, it didn’t take long before Texas A&M’s Dutch Patterson (“Fly Half”) scored a try for the Aggies making it 7-5 in favor of Santa Clara (the Aggies apparently missed the 2-point conversion kick which would have tied the game);
  • Not to be outdone, Santa Clara answered the Aggie try by adding 3-points via a penalty kick and extending their lead to 10-5 in favor of Santa Clara;
  • (32nd Minute) The Aggies scored again when James Lardner (“Prop”) ran 50-meters for a try; tying the game at 10-10; and
  • Following Lardner’s try, No. 9 Manuel Zapata successfully hit the conversion kick for A&M, and the Aggies took a 12-10 lead over Santa Clara.

HALF-TIME: Texas A&M leading 12-10.

SECOND HALF:

  • Texas A&M’s Ben Hoffman scored a try, extending the Aggie lead to 17-10, while Eli Young hit the conversion and extended it further to 19-10;
  • A little later, Texas A&M’s Jeremy Brown linked-up with Dutch Patterson for another try, extending the lead to 24-10 (according to D1ARugby.com, this try was scored by Jeremy Brown);
  • However, Santa Clara wasn’t done and put another try on the board, closing the scoring gap to 24-15;
  • Late in the game, Texas A&M’s Dutch Patterson adds another try, putting the game out-of-reach for Santa Clara at 29-15 in favor of A&M;
  • Before the game is over, Texas A&M’s Kade Ball adds one more try on the last play of the game, making it 34-15 in favor of A&M; and
  • Following the try by Kade Ball, Eli Young hit another 2-point conversion in order to win the game by a score of 36-15!

FINAL TIME: TEXAS A&M WINS 36-15.

GAME STATS:

  • The Aggies scored two (2) trys in the first half; and four (4) in the second half.
  • The Aggies converted one (1) try in the first half (50%); and two (50%) in the second half.
  • Aggies Scoring Trys: Dutch Patterson: 2; James Lardner: 1; Ben Hoffman: 1; Jeremy Brown: 1; and Kade Ball: 1.
  • Conversions: Manuel Zapata: 1; and Eli Young: 2.
  • Both Manuel Zapata and Tommy Batterson left the game during an injury substitution.

The Aggies will play Cal Poly before returning home to face Wisconsin on March 19th. After Wisconsin, the Aggies will travel North to the state of Oklahoma to play OU for the RRRC Championship on March 28.

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