Sunday, July 26, 2009

Stratford Away

Grimsby Gentlemen 20: Stratford Black Swans 33

Referee: Mark Glendenn

Weather: A heavy rain storm as we drove up but the sun shone throughout the game although there was a black cloud over us. The field was in great shape.

Attendance: A large number of home town fans as there was a special memorial service after and several of the Stratford teams played.

Presidents Report: Oh-oh. Plan A was to beat Stratford convincingly but in a friendly manner as the Black Swans had not yet won a game and had been getting beat by very high scores. We put 53 points on them at home and we were planning to put as many on again to bring our points for and against to zero. We were also celebrating the second time we travelled with a team of 16 players. However, the sun did not shine on us and within five minutes we lost Mike A. to a lower body injury, then at 30 minutes Jamie S. had to leave with a rib injury, and at 35 minutes Scott W. also had to leave with a bad sprain. We played the whole second half with 13 players and it showed.

The Stratford team kicked off and kept Grimsby in their end for most of the first 15 min but Grimsby (Kyle W) managed to score first at about the 16 min mark and Dylan K. converted. However the Black Swans kept running confidently in the backs and made a break to score under the posts to tie the game at 25 minutes. They scored shortly after with a long run with support to go ahead by a converted try. Dylan kicked a penalty late in the first half.

Half time score Grimsby 10: Stratford 14

One minute into the second half Grimsby came closer with a penalty by Dylan. However the problems with thirteen men against fifteen resulted in a converted Stratford try at 50 min and an unconverted try at 65 minutes. With about 5 minutes to go, Grimsby got close with a great attacking kick into the endzone by Craig E. and Derrick W. fought off the defender to ground the ball and Dylan converted. We now were within six points, perhaps win the game, or at least get a bonus point, and win the singing competition (Plan B). However, Stratford was not finished and scored once more in the 79th minute and converted.

Final Grimsby 20: Stratford 33

This was Stratford's first win and they well deserved it. They they gave us a great beer up at a local pub and we lead in the singing.

After the game, Stratford had a tree planting ceremony for one of their former players who passed away a year ago. Darryl Van Den Tempel, who was only 21 years old and a strong member of the club, was killed in an ATV accident.

Team: Nathan Rowbottom (a nice surprise), Mark Hall, Jon Millington, Jeremy Young, Dean Gibson, Mike Antonelli, Kyle Wilson, Joel Leonard, Dylan Kinch, Derrick Weber (C), Scott Walker, Mike Stuart, Bob Mavro, Jamie Scully, Alex Stevenson,

Craig Evans came on at 5 min for Mike Antonelli and went to #10

The team picture did not work out, I was too rushed.

Coaches Report: Well we probably thought we could beat these guys with thirteen as we did so well against Kent with only thirteen. However, Stratford challenged us by running hard through gaps and making breaks with support. We did not seem to be able to find an and had difficulty getting through their defensive line. Mark H. did well at hooker for a last minute switch and so did Dylan K. who took over the scrum half spot and can still send a good pass. Our tackling was suspect, we often lost the ball in contact often, and tended to ball watch in defence. With only thirteen players we had trouble covering their kicks. We drastically reduced the number of penalties we took to about 3, compared to the last game although we seem to chirp at the ref a lot which takes us off focus.

Man of the Match: Derrick Weber for his fine play at fullback in the second half making a couple of try saving tackles and scoring near the end to bring us close. Also I liked the work of Dean Gibson who put in a workman like day all around the field. Honourable mention to all those who had to play out of position.

Their Man of the Match: Alex Stevenson (if he wins more of these he may become a drinker)

Our Man of the Match: their thirteen

From Under the Willow:

Plan C: We need to at least beat one other team (and pick up some bonus points) as I can see Stratford beating Kent and being tied with us in wins. The first tie breaker is the number of defaults and we have one. Next game is at Highland August 8 after a week off.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Windsor Away

Grimsby Gentlemen 3: Windsor Rogues 24

Referee: David Jameson (from the U.S.)

Weather: overcast at start with a little rain then hot then a little rain at the end (23 degrees)

Attendance: We had two supporters

Presidents Report:

The one game we had been dreading since the start of the season due to distance and numbers, actually did well and had fifteen players (+1)for an away game for the first time this year and we had two drop out the night before. Milli arranged for two vans and one van stayed the night. It was a four hour trip one way, but as Windsor keeps reminding us they do a lot of driving for their away games. We did better in the set pieces and got it out to the backs more and pressured them the first part of the game but we let the game turn into a rowdy undisciplined mess in the second half.

Team: Mark Hall, Dylan Kinch, Jon Millington, Jeremy Young, Scott Walker, Dean Gibson, Mike Antonelli, Vic Blaney, Jon Jeske, Craig Evans, Jamie Scully, Mike Stuart, Alex Stevenson, Bob Mavro, Derrick Weber (C)

Subs: Kyle Wilson came on at half for Dean Gibson

Coaches Report: I thought we had the horses to actually win this one, reuniting our centers and having a full team. We did well for the first half of the first half until we missed a clearing kick (out on the full), we poached the ball from the ensuing ruck at our five but the clearing kick was blocked resulting in a 5 m scrum and the first score at 16 min. At 31 min, we did not cover a high kick well allowing them to run the ball back and score again.

Half time Grimsby 0: Windsor 14

In the second half, most of the play was in the centre until Windsor intercepted a pass and scored again at 18 min. This led to a bit of unnecessary temper which resulted in two yellows to us and one to them. On the restart, we managed to get another sin bin putting us down two players. They quickly scored from a scrum and ruck to put Windsor up 24 points. We did not get whitewashed as Dylan kicked a penalty late in the game.

Final score Grimsby 3: Windsor 24

The scrum did well compared to the week before as we pushed them around a bit. We still had a dozen penalties with three yellows. We have to be more disciplined and better coached if we expect to win games. We need to be quicker in the forwards and backs need to run straight and with a purpose. We need to make sure or our kicking game.

From under the Willow:

We need to have a killer instinct when we are in their end.

We look slow and do not appear confident we can win these games.

Windsor is still a place where a male can take off his pants and dance and make money.

Man of the match: Vic Blaney

Man of the match picked by Windsor: Vic Blaney who lost decisively to a 47 year old in the drink off. (Elizabeth, I am not responsible if Vic did not make it home) You will have to come to practice to hear about what happened to those who stayed the night in Windsor because I do not print lies.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Windsor at home

Grimsby Gentlemen 5: Windsor Rogues 10

Referee: Heather Jones from Erie

Weather: Muggy with a temperature of 25 degrees and a fairly strong wind blowing northish.

Attendance: A good crowd bolstered by our injured players

Presidents Report: Not a good start to the second half of the season as this was a winnable game in a season without a lot of wins so far. We started slow and Windsor used the wind to kick which we did not handle well. They scored twice early in the first half to complete their scoring. Grimsby scored on a quick penalty tap by Dylan K. and a good offload to Jon Jeske to score with about two minutes to go in the game to avoid being blanked.

Team: Nathan Rowbottom, Dylan Kinch, Jon Millington, Jeremy Young, Kevin Murphy,
Dean Gibson, Kyle Wilson, Joel Leonard, Jon Jeske, Derrick Weber (C), Bob Mavro on the wing, Alex Millar, Alex Stevenson, Jamie Scully.

Reserves used: Andy Breuls for Alex Millar at about 30 min, Joel Leonard out and Craig Evans in at about 40 min (Craig to #10, Derrick Weber to #13, Alex Stevenson to #15, Kyle Wilson to #8, Bob Mavro to #6)

Coaches Report: The referee had a lot of whistles which led to a lot of scrums which did not bode well for us. We had difficulty taking them on in the set pieces. We did not do well on the ups especially at the start when they were close to our line. We need to look ahead (not ball watch), nominate our man and then take that man. In the second half, they had a number of scrums on our five but with good desperate scrummaging we were able to keep them out of the end zone.

From under the willow: We had trouble with the scrums and even when won and not pushed back still had difficulty getting a good ball out.

Slow start. Need to be ready to play.

Not enough penetration with the ball, getting over the gain line.

Coaches Man of the match: Jon Jeske the hard working half back

Other teams pick of man of the match: Jon Jeske

We chose their hooker.

Next week away against the same team in Windsor.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Mid Season Review

At the start of the season (April) it was possible we may not have a team this year as we did not seem to have enough players committed. Also several players indicated that as we moved up a division to Niagara A and would have to travel more, they were not interested in playing or would only play home games. Therefore it is a struggle getting fifteen each week and we are now recognized as one of those teams that do not travel well. We did get 25 players registered with a number of new players and one would think that we should have enough dedication to get at least fifteen each week, home or away. We welcomed seven new players: Jon Jeske, Colin Maisonneuve, Jemie Scully, Chris Sears, Alex Stevenson, Jeremy Young with Nathan Rowbottom from Waterloo playing 5 of the 7 games. We also welcomed back most of Dean Gibson (but not all).

However, we also have had significant injuries, Stuart English played only 5 min of the first game, Kyle Wilson has only played in two games and Scott Walker (all the way from London) has only played in one game due to injury and distance. Craig Evans, Chris Sears, Colin Maisonneuve, Ely Raddick have missed many games through work. A number of others have been injured, sick or working. This has meant that we have been short for every away game and have had few substitutions in home games. And because there are fewer people available, we have less at practice to go over our skills and game plans and we are less efficient on the field.

We have a 2 and 5 record (one being a default: we played but borrowed two players), but it could have been 3 and 4 with the close last minute loss in Kent. On the good side, we have won 2 games and have been competitive (made a game of it in our losses)in every game. We have scored 109 points (thanks Stratford) for an average of 15.6 points per game and have had 133 scored upon us for an average of 22.2 per game. Congratulations to Derrick Weber in his first season as captain and in a new position at #10. He has done well during difficult times. With a few more players (a couple of Americans we hope) and some recovering from injury we should be able to show the teams that we belong in this league.

Scoring after 7 games

Dylan: 4 P, 4 C (20 pts)
Alex S: 4 T (20 pts)
Mike S: 4 T (20 pts)
Derrick W: 1 T, 5 C (15 pts)
Joel L: 2 T (10 pts)
Kyle W: 1 T (5 pts)
Jon J: 1 T (5 pts)
Jon M: 1 T (5 pts)
Frank S: 1 T (5 pts)

I know this adds up to 105 but I am not sure why.

Skills competition results

Closest to the bag(kick 25 m): Andy Breuls
scrumhalf pass: Jon Jeske
Drop Kick (20 m): Dylan Kinch
Longest Kick: Andy Breuls (50 m)
Placekicks: Andy Breuls (6/8)
Fastest 250m: Jon Jeske and Alex Stevenson (38s)

Man of the match competition:(coaches and opposition picks)

Three votes: Alex Stevenson
Two votes: Jon Jeske, Vic Blaney, Mike Stuart
One vote: Kyle Wilson, Sean Padulo, Joel Leonard, Derrick Weber

Bob Mavro has attended the most practices since April 2 (20/23). Only Bob, Mark Hall, and Jeremy Young have played in every league game and Bob also went to Rochester.

My statistics may be wrong, please sign in and correct me.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Stratford at home

Grimsby Gentlemen 53: Stratford Black Swans 10

Referee: Jeff Dahl

Weather: Nice day for rugby. Warm (23 degrees) and slight wind. Field soft with lots of rain.

Attendance: 500 (a little under the season average due to summer holidays)

Presidents Report: Actually had 15 players at kickoff for a change (it was at home) thanks to the unexpected arrival of Nathan R of Waterloo. And we had a sixteenth with the arrival of Eli R. You could feel the excitement in the air with a full team playing a club even lower in the standings than us. Or maybe it was the expectation of Bob's Mom's homemade tsatziki sauce to go with the souvlaki that was served apres game. Thanks to Martin Wolff for being cook and emergency coach. Stratford played hard with several very young players and actually scored their points in the second half.

Team: Mark Hall, Dylan Kinch, Jon Millington, Jeremy Young, Nathan Rowbottom, Bob
Mavro, Kyle Wilson, Joel Leonard, Jon Jeske, Derrick Weber (C), Alex Millar, Mike Stuart, Andy Breuls, Jamie Scully, Frank Schilte and replacement Eli Raddick at 60 minutes for Jamie.

Replacement Coaches: Martin Wolff and Adam Wilson

Coaches Report: The coach missed the second half, so I am going on the report of my able replacements Martin Wolff and Adam Wilson. I did feel like an active coach again as we had one substitute and I got to replace him (at least my assistants did)We were able to do a number of things better this game albeit with a weak opposition. The scrums were good, we did not get wheeled. We did a little better in the lineouts and scored off a drive. The backs got lots of ball with time. The forwards scored half the tries. The slow ball was better although it was very slow setting up.

Half time score Grimsby 27: Stratford 0

We scored fairly quickly after half but went off the boil for a while and got counter rucked, so ball was not coming out cleanly. Full credit to the young Stratford side for hanging in over a tough season. It got a little rough near the end and we had our first card of the season at the 79 min mark.

Well done by Joel L., playing at eight for the first time this year and Nathan R. at lock. We welcomed Kyle W. back after missing 5 games through injury and welcome to Jamie Scully who played very well in his first game at wing.

Full time score Grimsby 53: Stratford 10

Scoring: Joel Leonard 2T, Mike Stuart 2T, Kyle Wilson 1T, Jon Jeske on fire (first try for Grimsby), Jon Millington 1T, Frank Shilte 1T, Dylan Kinch 1 P, 4 C.

Coaches man of the match Jon Jeske