April 25 was a very warm day as the Gentlemen made the trip to Rochester for their first exhibition games. With a little help with some excellent American imports, a Canadian extra, and one player emerging from retirement we made the numbers. We were to play two fourty minute games against the Colonials and Montclair New Jersey. After trying to get the calls organized and the new laws explained we started against Montclair, who were a spirited team, perhaps too noisy,. Playing against a strong wind the first half, Frank scored at two and a half minutes in, but Montclair answered with a try about 5 minutes later. After half time, Mike Stuart barged over to a try, hurting a few players on the way but Montclair responed to tie the game again. Close to the end, Grimsby scored from a quick penalty (by one of the American imports - Mike) but then Monclair agressively kept the ball alive from a lineout in their own end to score a try in extra time. They converted to win the game 17 - 15.
Tries: Frank Schilte, Mike Stuart, Mike ?
We started the second game right after, with the wind, and Vic made a 40 meter run over and around a number of players to score the first try. In one of the best touch rugby plays ever, Bob intercepted a pass and galloped 50 m into the endzone which Derrick converted.
Tries: Vic Blaney, Bob Mavro
Conversions Derrick Weber
Team: Jon Millington, Dylan Kinch, Kevin Murphy, Brandon, Kyle Wilson, Nathan Rowbottom, Mike, Vic Blaney, Kevin Erb, Craig Evans, Martin Wolff, Mike Stuart, Derrick Weber (C), Bob Mavro, Frank Shilte.
Overall a good day, we need more organization and confidence on the field which comes from practice. Kevin Erb did very well in his first attempt at scrum half. Bob Mavro returned to the wing and made some good runs as did Martin Wolff who came out of retirement to play (as good as ever) with his American cousins. Craig Evans, who reached an age milestone on Sunday, was selected man of the match for his cool playing at number 10. We tried a few moves which were generally successful but need more work. We did well on the rucks getting turnover ball quite often and the backs counterattacked well at pace. Good first effort by everyone.
Overall a good day and I didn't lose Vic.