Saint Mary’s College has an outstanding college rugby program that has performed at consistently high levels throughout its years in USA Division 1. Each year, Dozens of young men venture onto the grounds of Pat Vincent Field with aspirations of championship play. Participants are well aware of the responsibility to uphold the long standing traditions of Gael Rugby.
NEWS & HIGHLIGHTS
May 30, 2016
The Gaels crowned USA Rugby D1A 7’s 2016 National Champions
Saint Mary’s Finally Does It | Goff Report
When colleges started playing serious 7s rugby, everyone assumed Saint Mary’s would be good at it; and so the Gaels were, but at the same time, they never won a national title. Read more here.
On the third and final day of the USA Rugby 7s DI national championships, St. Mary’s held off a tough AIC squad to capture the title. The Gael’s finished a perfect 6-0 on the weekend after holding up AIC in the try zone in extra time. Read more here
Tackle that won National Championship by Kevin O’Connor.
Dylan Audsley earned the Dave Sitton MVP award.
GAME SCHEDULE RESULTS
Friday | May 27, 2016 - SMC 36 - West Virginia 5
Friday | May 27, 2016 - SMC 50 - Alabama 0
Saturday | May 28, 2016 - SMC 22 - Arkansas 12
Saturday | May 28, 2016 - SMC 21 - Notre Dame 17 (Quarterfinal Match)
Sunday | May 29, 2016 SMC 19 - Arizona State 10 (Semi-final Match)
Sunday | May 29, 2016 SMC 7 - American International 5 (Championship Match)
May 28, 2016
Severe Weather Warning | All games moved to an earlier start time.
USA Rugby sent out a notification of the impending weather from tropical storm Bonnie. All Cup Finals will be played at an earlier time and with seven minute halves in an effort to complete the tournament before the closure of the fields due to flood or lightning delay.
May 19, 2016
CALIFORNIA’S BEST EARN PLACE ON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
Alex Solomon | D1A Rugby.com
Four of the five teams in the California Conference finished the season in the Canterbury D1A Top 20, including No. 2 Saint Mary’s, which recently played in its fourth consecutive D1A National Championship Final.Needless to say, there is a lot of superb individual talent amongst the California Conference. Read more here.
Saint Mary’s Players named to All - Conference
Dino Waldren - Front Row
Henry Hall - Lock
Mike Tillson - Lock
Alec Barton - Back Row Forwards
Kevin O’Connor - BAck Row Forwards
Chris McDonald - Scrum Half
Mike McCarthy - Center
Aaron Matthews - Freshman of the Year
Vili Helu - Forward of the Year
Dylan Audsley - Back of the Year
May 18, 2016
2016 USA Rugby College 7s National Championships
USA Rugby, in partnership with IMG, will hold the 2016 USA Rugby College 7s National Championships at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC. Sixty of college rugby’s finest men’s and women’s programs will descend upon WakeMed Soccer Park May 27-29 to compete in four tournament fields – Men’s Division I and II, as well as Women’s Division I and II brackets. You can find more information here.
May 17, 2016
End of Season Awards
Player awards followed starting with Andrew Cooke ‘11 announcing Rookie of the Year- Aaron Matthews, Freshman Center from Irvine, CA. Mark Bass announced the two winners of the Ironman Award. Alejandro Duran, Sophomore Center from Elgin,Il, and Alex Drake, Senior Prop from Santa Rosa. Brendan O’Meara, SMC Alum announced the Back of the Year Award, Mike McCarthy, Junior Flyhalf from San Francisco. Johnny Everett presented the Most Improved Forward Award to Peter Walden, Sophomore Prop from Albuquerque, NM, and the Forward of the Year Award to Senior Dino Waldren from Crockett, CA. Tim O’Brien then presented the Brother Kyran Leadership Award to Team Captain Kevin O’Connor, Returning Senior from San Mateo, CA; and the Most Valuable Player Award to Sophomore #8 Vili Helu from San Mateo.
May 14, 2016 | Men’s Rugby 7’s compete in Santa Cruz
In a glorious sun soaked day on the UCSC campus Saint Mary’s College participated in today’s Pacific West Conference sevens championship defeating UC Davis 24-12 in the championship match . As a replacement for a last minute withdrawal by Sacramento State University, the Pac West Tournament was a perfect organizational tool and buildup for the upcoming USA d1a 7's event in North Carolina May 27-29th. Coach Joe Reavey (2014) assisted by Kingsley McGowan (2015) moved 15 players around seamlessly to finish 4-0 on the day walking away with a better understanding of the strength of the side as well as the work needed to be done in the weeks ahead.....In the first match of the day against University of Nevada Reno, the Gaelsstill a bit rusty on the basic fundamentals of 7s, provided their opponent all too much possession. However, as the game took shape, the Gaels were too much for UNR posting a 34-0 shutout. Next up was Stanford. Starters against Stanford included freshman standouts Wesley Chock and Vincente Cunha-Vaz, who setup multiple tries enroute to a Gaels win, 28-5. Last up in pool play were the San Jose State Spartans. The SJSU lineup looked a bit different adding 15's "hogs" Henry Hall and Mike Garrett into the starting lineup. Between counter-rucking numerous balls and making significantly powerful tackles, the usual 15's big boys held their own while defeating SJSU 24-0. Last up for the Cup Final was UC Davis. With multiple talented players on the Aggies side, the Gaels were sure it would be a difficult match. Possession, stern defense and an opponent willing to kick for territory led to a 29-10 score line. Highlight on the day would be the return of Holden Yungert to the field after his 8 week recovery from a broken arm vs Cal. All in all, it was a good weekend for the boys as they not only walked away with many things to work on in preparation for the 7's Championship tournament in North Carolina, but also the Pac West Tournament Cup.
SMC 7s: Kevin O’Connor, Dylan Audsley, Holden Yungert, Vili Helu, Bradley Roberts, Charlie Louden, Henry Hall, Mike Garrett, Jack Carso, Mike McCarthy, Chris McDonnell, Nick Schlobohm, Tommy Wallace, Wesley Chock and Vicente Cunha-Vaz.Unavailable Alec Barton.
May 8, 2016
Gaels Fall Just Short of Three-Peat Against Life University By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - Two of the premier collegiate rugby sides met on Saturday at Saint Mary’s Stadium to battle it out for eighty minutes to see who was worthy of hoisting the D1A National Championship trophy. The two teams, of course, were the #1 Life University Running Eagles and the #2 Saint Mary’s Gaels. These two programs have become quite familiar with each other, having played each other in the national championship for each of the past four years. Life, who won the initial meeting in 2013, lost the next two championship matches to the Gaels and was looking to even the head-to-head championship matchups 2-2. Saint Mary’s, on the other hand, was looking to defend their title once more in hopes of a three-peat in front of their home crowd in Moraga. Read more here.
View photos here.
May 6, 2016
SAINT MARY’S RUGBY EXCELS AS A CLUB SPORT WITH VARSITY PASSION
D1A Rugby Alex Solomon
Saint Mary’s College, a small private university with just over 4,000 students, is about to play for its third consecutive D1A Rugby National Championship without the benefits of a paid coaching staff or scholarships. The Gaels are indeed in the top-one percentile in terms of competitiveness on the pitch, but still wade in the pool of club rugby along with the vast majority of college teams. Read more here.
View more photos of the 2015 National Championship Game here.
May 4, 2016
Saint Mary’s Will Battle Life University for D1A National Championship
By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - After defeating Utah 81-32 in the semifinals, #2 Saint Mary’s will face #1 Life University, who beat #3 Lindenwood 41-7, in the D1A National Championship on May 7th. This will be the fourth consecutive year that Life and Saint Mary’s have played against each other in the championship. In their first meeting in 2013, Life took the trophy home. When the Gaels had the chance to take the title away from the Running Eagles in 2014, they did just that. Saint Mary’s successfully defended their title in 2015 with a closely contested 30-24 victory over the Running Eagles to win back-to-back national championships. The quest for a three-peat will take place on Saturday, May 7, at Saint Mary’s Stadium at 3:00 P.M. Admission is $15 for non-students and $10 for students with a valid ID. As Saint Mary’s is hosting five different championships on this day, it would be smart to get there nice and early to support the Gaels to givethem home field advantage on the quest for three consecutive national championships.
April 30, 2016
Saint Mary’s Advances to Their Fourth Consecutive D1A National Championship
By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - On the road to the national championship, #2 Saint Mary’s hosted #5 Utah for the D1A Semifinals. It was a tale of two halves for the Gaels, as their play was much better in the second half. Read more here.
SMC vs. UTAH | 81- 32
Saint Mary’s College advances to the D1A Rugby Championship game on May 7th against Life University. View more photos here.
Saint Mary’s Too Strong for Utah, Advances to D1A Title Game
By: Alex Solomon | D1A Rugby.com
MORAGA, Calif. – Saint Mary’s has earned the chance to play for a third consecutive D1A National Championship after having its way with Utah, 81-32. Read more here.
April 28, 2016
Dylan Audsley Wins Inaugural Scholz Award | By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - Saint Mary’s center and goalkicker Dylan Audsley was awarded the inaugural Rudy Scholz Award, which honors the best men’s collegiate rugger, on April 27 with great prestige. Audsley was one of four finalists selected from the original pool of twelve nominees. The first twelve were nominated by a five man panel and then each rugby team was given a vote to narrow down the list to three. However, there was a tie among two nominees, so there were four finalists to choose from, including Lorenzo Thomas of Lindenwood and the Gaels’ own Dylan Audsley. The five man panel consisting of select rugby coaches and media reconvened to select the nation’s best collegiate rugby player.
The center has been a critical part of the Gaels’ success in the past couple of years. With his bright scrum cap and cleats, you would think that it’d be easy for defenders to locate him, but that is not the case at all. Always keeping defenders on their toes because of his vast array of moves, Audsley can turn the corner and score a try at any given moment. In addition to being one of, if not the most, exciting players to watch in all of rugby, Audsley also has one of the most accurate boots in the country. His kicking accuracy is even more astonishing when you consider the length of some of his penalty kicks, which can go all the way out to the 50 metre line. Audsley will officially receive the award on June 11 at the Washington Athletic Club of Seattle, Washington at a gala. The Scholz Award is named in honor of Rudy Scholz, who actually played scrumhalf for California Conference rival Santa Clara University and the helped the USA Olympic team bring home two gold medals in 1920 and 1924.
Congrats to Audsley for winning the Rudy Scholz Award
Dylan Audsley, best men’s college rugby player in the country. Read More here.
“It's great to be a part of this new award. I'm happy to be a part of something that will help grow rugby in America and give recognition to more student athletes. It's great for the program as it's a testament to how much work the team puts in. In reality it’s the people that surround me that are the reason for my success. Tim, Johnny, and my teammates help me to try to be best I can be.” - Dylan Audsley, Class of 2017
April 27, 2016
Gaels Meet the Utes in the Semifinals | By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - After defeating the Air Force Academy 77-17 in the D1A Quarterfinals, Saint Mary’s will face the University of Utah Utes during the Semifinals on Saturday, April 30, at 1:00 P.M. at Saint Mary’s Stadium. #5 Utah defeated the University of Arizona 36-14 last week to advance to their first D1A Semifinal in school history. The Utes were originally scheduled to play at Saint Mary’s at the end of January, but the match had to be cancelled and was not made up. However, the two top-five teams met on the Gaels’ annual trip to Utah in March, where they faced both Utah and BYU. The Gaels were able to pull away with a close 57-50 win over the Utes in their only match of the year by breaking the 50-50 tie with a late try. Saturday’s battle between the two top-five teams should be intense, as the winner will guarantee themselves a spot in the D1A National Championship, which is something Utah has never done before, while Saint Mary’s is trying to make it there for the fourth consecutive year. It would be especially sweet for the Gaels to play for a three-peat in front of their own fans in Moraga.
April 24, 2016
Gaels Fly Over the Air Force 77-17 | By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - A day after beating Cal Poly 43-17 to advance to the D1A Quarterfinals, the Air Force Academy played Saint Mary’s at Saint Mary’s Stadium. The defending back-to-back national champions began their title defense as if they were on a mission to repeat once again. Read more here.
Photo by Mike Geib
View more photos here.
St. Mary’s joined Lindenwood, Life, and Utah in the DIA semifinals with a convincing 77-17 defeat of Air Force Sunday.
Gaels Start Fast, Sprint past Air Force | Alex Solomon D1A Rugby
MORAGA, Calif. – Saint Mary’s made quick work of an Air Force team coming off yesterday’s 43-17 win over Cal Poly. On a dry California afternoon, the Gaels played their fast-paced, yet unselfish brand of rugby and defeated the Zoomies 77-17 to reach another D1A Semifinal. Read more here.
April 23, 2016
Air Force Advances to Face the Gaels in the Quarterfinals | By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - Cal Poly and the Air Force were supposed to face off in the opening round of the D1A playoffs last Saturday but had to cancel the match due to a snowstorm and bad weather that caused the Denver airport to cancel several hundred flights. To get everything back up to speed, it was ruled that #8 Air Force would advance instead of #13 Cal Poly because of their higher ranking. This ruling was overturned on appeal and it was determined that the two teams would fight to play Saint Mary’s at the Gael’s own Pat Vincent Field the day before the Quarterfinals. Read more here.
April 18, 2016
D1A Rugby Playoff Outlook After Opening Round | By: Christian Portillo
MORAGA, CALIF. - Although #2 Saint Mary’s had the weekend off after concluding the regular season with a 50-11 win over Cal Poly, six other D1A teams opened the playoffs in hopes of pursuing a national title on Saturday. Read more here.
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