The Union County Rugby Football Club (UCRFC) U15 and U19 Boys teams were action on Friday playing against the touring Liberty RFC from Washington State. Liberty traveled east with a party of 75 players, coaches and fans to take on UCRFC and Xavier High School.
In the first match, the Liberty's U14 (freshmen) team bettered the UCRFC U15s by a 25-0 score. The match was much closer than the score would indicate as Liberty scored three tries that were quite controversial. To their credit, the young UCRFC team battled throughout the match and never gave up.
In the second match the UCRFC U19 B-side was matched up against the very talented Liberty U16 team. The Liberty U16s came into the match as a team that had played together for 4 years and had only lost a handful of matches during that time. The UCRFC "Bs", however, were up to the challenge and played a terrific match, pulling off a 9-7 upset. Ryne Morrison provided all the scoring as he made 3 penalty kicks, including the game winner with time running out.
In the final match on the day, UCRFC's U19 A-side took on Liberty's U19 A-side. UCRFC jumped out to an early lead as Pete Ondi scored a pair of tries. Liberty struck back with two tries of their own and a conversion to take a 12-10 lead. The "As" regained the lead on a try by Jon Brucia and they held a 15-12 lead at the half. Brucia added his second try and the Jr Mudturtles were up 20-12. Each team made multiple attacks that were stopped by strong defense. On the last play of the match, Liberty finally broke through to score a try that was converted but the 7 points could only get them within one point of the UCRFC team and the home side had a hard earned 20-19 win.
The much anticipated match on Sunday against Morris RFC was postponed because of an unplayable field. The two teams will meet on Tuesday May 4 at 5PM in Unami Park in a match that could decide the METNY U19 championship. Before that, however, the Jr Mudturtles will be in action against the Long Island Colts on Sunday May 2 in Wheeler Park, Linden.