Saturday, August 2, 2014

Looking to 2014 with the Columbus Rugby Club

Last year Scioto Valley, the 15s leg of the Columbus Rugby Club, took fourth place in the newly formed Division I of the Midwest and, despite some personnel changes, Coach Steve Finkel expects a better result from his team.

"The Midwest Division I league is going to be hard this season," Finkel said.

Last year was the first time those teams had faced off in the DI format, so there was a bit of a feeling-out process during 2013. Now that he knows what to expect from each team, Finkel expects his team to be in the Top Four again this year.

While Finkel knows what to expect from his competitors, it remains to be seen if his remaining players can convert that knowledge into wins. This might be easier said than done, though, especially because some of their strongest players won't be in town.

"One of our star players just signed with USARFU 7s, Perry Baker, and is headed to San Diego with another one of our stars, already-signed Mike Ziegler," Finkel said. "We also had two other players invited to camp, Dom Mauer and Ryan Cochran. We also sent Zack Stryffeler to Ireland to improve his rugby skills."

Despite these notable absences, Finkel is confident in his remaining players and their ability to win. He is especially confident in his improved pack, which has been beefed up from last year.

"The Columbus Rugby Club will be playing the best rugby in the state this season," Finkel said.

Time will tell on that claim once the Fall season kicks off in August.

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