April 16, 2022 Memphis TN– Sam Houston State University traveled to Memphis to participate in the Bluff City 7s collegiate tournament hosted by the University of Memphis Alumni. The trip was worth their effort as they took top honors on the day.
Four teams worked in a round robin format. Memphis A&B, Christian Brothers University and Sam Houston. The day was perfect for rugby with the weather around 65 degrees, overcast with intermittent slight sprinkles to cool the players.
A fairly good crowd was on hand despite the threat of rain and everyone seemed to have a lot of fun. There was a festive feel in the air.
Memphis A beat Sam Houston in the first match of the day. Then CBU won over Memphis B. Sam Houston won over CBU and Memphis A beat Memphis B. Memphis A won over CBU, and Sam Houston took Memphis B. The teams were re-seeded and a playoff was set. The last 2 matches of the day pitted Memphis A against Sam Houston and CBU against Memphis B.
Sam Houston had more firepower in the last match. Memphis A fought very hard with several amazing goal line stands, but they fell short on tries and took second place in the tournament.
CBU played very well on the weekend, showing the progress of their players in strength, fitness and rugby knowledge. “I was very impressed with the lads today”, said coach Brian Colbridge. “They outdid themselves.”
A surprise on the day was a the strength of Memphis B. Mostly pack players, they were dominant at moments of their matches due to the ability to control the ball while power running over opponents. “I loved seeing those props manage those quick offloads,” said Tiger Coach Dave Hill. “Gonna be great for our 15s in the fall.”
Memphis A was disappointed with their second place finish. However, as a tune up match for next weekend’s Southeastern Collegiate Rugby Conference (SCRC) 7s tournament, it worked out quite well. “For the most part, we came out of the weekend with a good run and the players healthy,” said Coach Phil Beck. “That was my main goal.”
Bling was passed out by tournament coordinator Steve Williams along with Rick Cole, Director of Rugby at Memphis. Many thanks to all who helped put on the tournament, including Marc Holley in the T-shirt booth, Referees Mariah Kaliapu, Rob Reetz and Troy McCall, and Jennifer Bone the trainer. Great thanks to Steve Williams, for coordinating the event.
The Tigers travel to MTSU next weekend for two days of conference play. We wish them well!