February 3, 2024

Match Recap: UW at Seattle Rhinos

On February 3rd, the University of Washinton faces off against the Seattle Rhinos Mens club in a 15s rugby match

Saturday's game against the Seattle Rhinos men's club was physical, and UW's defensive alignment and tackle success was noticeably improved from the test against Arizona.

The Rhinos scored first try, then with a beautiful switch inside center Vaea Tangitou dotted down for UW under the posts, but the Rhinos swiftly regained momentum with another.

The halftime score: Rhinos 12-7 UW.

Although our scrums were dominated most of the first 60 minutes, we gradually strengthened our binds and asserted control later in the game. Lineouts were strong throughout, as we continued to increase our success rate with lift speed and throwing accuracy.

Our backs gelled today for the first time, finding open space, covering the backfield, and difficult to penetrate. In a pivotal moment, the first try in the second half came from Brian Cain, blindside flanker playing out with the backs. Rhinos 12-14 UW.

The match highlighted significant strides in team communication, defensive trust, and strategic adaptability, providing valuable insights for the upcoming weeks. A brief cameo by Eric Douchle, who has been helping coach UW, injected some energy. We replaced him within 5 or 10 minutes, but not before he scored an unconverted try for us. Rhinos 12-19 UW.

Sebastian Sosa, an intuitive rookie fullback, choreographed the deep three and kicked well, earning a try chasing his own kick. As our backs opened up the defense (our first time doing this consistently in recent history, Brian Cain instinctually kicked through, recovered, and scored a second. Unfortunately, we did not score last - the Rhinos pulled momentum out from under us and scored again within minutes. Credit to them for twice scoring a try within minutes of one of ours - we'll examine this in the week ahead. Christian Mirich was 4/5 with conversion kicks.

Final score: Rhinos 24-33 UW.

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