The Happy Valley Barbarians returned home after three road games, to the friendly confines of West Campus to face Old Gaelic, an EPRU D3 team based out of Mechanicsburg. Old Gaelic (OG) was rebounding from a disappointing loss at the MARFU playoffs, where they finished 3rd.
The game started off with both teams feeling each other out, playing mostly between the 22's. Old Gaelic gave up an early penalty, which Patrick converted, HV 3- OG 0. Old Gaelic worked down the field getting in the Baba's 22 and then their fly half converted a drop kick, now 3-3. Soon thereafter, Ricketts broke free, running about 25 m and then about 5 m from the try zone, attempted to offload to Andy, who knocked it on. On the ensuing scrum to OG, the front row of Andy, Hank and Brandon, won one off the tighthead, Ethan worked it out to MoMo on the wing who placed it down over two tacklers. Baba's up 8-3. The Baba's continued to dominate territory and possession, winning many rucks, maintaining good possession on scrums and lineout's, until the ball worked out wide to Tony Monaco, breaking several tackles and placed it down for another try, Baba's up 13-3. On the ensuing kickoff, Old Gaelic took back possession on a poorly handled kick by the Baba's and pressured the Baba's deep in their half. Some dumb handling in the try zone by the Baba's resulted in an Old Gaelic player putting down the ball in the try zone (or possibly the ref awarded a penalty try, can't remember) and they were now successfully converting, putting the game at 13-10, Baba's.
After half, Old Gaelic was called in for hands in penalty directly in front of their post, Patrick converted, and we are now up 16-10 and starting to cruise. On the ensuing kickoff, the Baba's worked the ball out to put pressure on OG in their 22, their scrum won the ball, worked it back to the flyhalf who attempted to kick and the kick was blocked by Deerhunter with Patrick scrambling on the ball to score a try. Baba's now up 21-10.
Old Gaelic was not quitting, they still had some hard runners who broke through the backline, but pursuit by Gorgeous George, Schweppe, Steve T and Jack Ambler prevented any breakaways. Matt Langston did a great job in handling some tough kicks at fullback and the game was in the safe hands of the Babas. With about 10 m to play, Deerhunter took a quick penalty, danced around several OG players and scored the final points of the day, 26-10. Happy Valley wins.
In the B game, a mixture of old, motley and young players faced off against the OG A side and though scoring first on a great dish from Neil to Tom Hay, they ended up losing 35-7. Great tackling by Crapplegate, Rod Boner and Sausage Wallet in a well played B game facing a very good Old Gaelic side.
A Side Starting 15- Andy (Hooker at 50m), Hank, Brandon (Andy at 55 m), Jack, George, Rickets, Steve T, Schweppe, Ethan, DH, Tony, Patrick, MoMo (Mike Green at 50 m), Flude (yes that is not a typo),Matt .
B Side 15 -Austin, Crapplegate, Chad Fisher, Rebar, Tom Hay, Del, Neil, Bernie, Hooker, Boner, Brett B, Rob Swales, a few Juniata guys.
Barbarisms- a treat during the B game was little Tommy Hay peeing in the try zone, (and then his Dad asking if he pooped or peed). Flude at wing was very interesting, as was his Chiquita banana outfit at the social. Many violated the rugby rules of etiquette by going home and showering before coming to the social- Martha Stewart would be ashamed. The Zlupko's are starting a dating service called BabaDate, and word is that Patrick met some interesting housefrau's later that evening at the bars. Thanks to Sharon and Neil for hosting the social. Since only about 6 Baba's were at the social initially the Man of the Match was Andy Haines, someone must have felt pity for the old man.
Next game is May 16 home vs. Frederick. This Saturday, May 9, the State College Alumni game is being held on West, all are welcome to come out and Jones a game, KO is 12:30 pm. Practice continues Tuesday and Thursday at 6 pm at West.