The Cleveland Rugby Club fell to the Cincinnati Wolfhounds 27-10 yesterday. The Club stood toe-to-toe with the visiting team’s forwards, going hammer-and -tong at each other in crunching tackles and contested breakdowns. The home side’s backs appeared to be more than a match for their opposites, snuffing out their offense for the most part and converging on their speed merchants to eliminate their offensive strikes.
Mental errors and penalties piling up led to the Club’s downfall yesterday, though. The team fell back on old habits that led them to squandering scoring opportunities when deeply entrenched in enemy territory; and when the chips were down they let frustration get the better of them. Chirping at one another and the referee only added fuel to the frustration fire on Saturday and put the game out of reach.
The Club did have bright spots in their performance, though. The forwards more than held their own in the set pieces, standing firm in the scrums and stalling out the opposition mauls in lineouts. The back line executed plays with speed and passed with accuracy. All 15 men defended hard and never stopped playing.
Going forward, the Club’s players will look to continue to build on their conditioning and tighten up the intricacies of their play that make all the difference when the match is in the balance.
Practice goes as usual on Tuesday and Thursday as the team prepares for their annual pilgrimage to Athens, Ohio to take on Ohio University.