Jesuit Rugby Surges Past NOLA Barbarians and Bayou Hurricanes
On Saturday, March 25, the Blue Jay rugby team, coming off a big 44-10 win against cross-town rivals the NOLA Barbarians, took on the Bayou Hurricanes down in Houma. The Jays faced the Hurricanes in the past two state title matches. The Hurricanes won the first; the Jays won the second. So, it was a test between two championship teams.
The Jays struck first and struck quickly. Within the first minute of the match, flyhalf Gabe Massey identified a gap in the Hurricane’s defense and used a clever corner kick to pin the Hurricanes deep in their own zone. A Bayou handling error resulted in a Jesuit scrum at the Hurricane’s five meter line. The Blue Jays assaulted the Bayou line with a pass from Massey to senior Matt Palmer, who crashed to the Bayou one foot line. Some quick thinking and a nifty “show and go” by senior halfback Brady Moran saw Moran sneak the pill across the line and dot down for the first score of the match. Conversion was no good. Jesuit up, 5-0.
Bayou was not cowed, however, and struck back with two quick, if somewhat flukey, scores. The first came off an intercepted pass that the Bayou player took to the house. The second followed another smart tactical kick by Massey, which pinned Bayou on its one foot line. A Bayou player recovered the ball just near the touchline and was cornered by three Blue Jays – when a defensive communication error saw the Bayou runner manage to juke the Jays and score a 100 meter try. Suddenly, Bayou was up 12-5.
The Blue Jays, however, remained calm and composed, and quickly found themselves back on the front foot. Numerous long runs by junior William Newel found the Hurricanes in a frantic defense trying to keep the Jays from scoring again. They were unsuccessful. The Jays swung the ball back and forth across the field leaving the Hurricanes dazed and confused. Massey attacked Bayou’s tryline and drew several defenders to him before he made a short pass to a charging Pat Gallagher, who was tackled on the one-foot. Noah Tobin, always with a nose for the ball, quickly grabbed it and dove across the line for the second Jays score. Conversion good, 12-12.
Thereafter, it was all Jays, all day. Jesuit executed several powerful driving mauls that left Bayou gasping and frustrated. Both resulted in Jesuit scores, the first by junior Langston Goldenberg, the second by senior Chuck Lobrano. Not long thereafter, the Jays found themselves back in their offensive pattern running and passing from touchline to touchline. Each successive Blue Jay assault earned them more meters. Eventually, the Jays found themselves at the Bayou five meter line when senior Johnny Tindall smartly scoped up the ball at the back of a ruck and crashed over for another Jesuit score. Shortly thereafter, senior wing Jack “Dilly” Dilaberto found himself with the ball with a narrow crease in front of him. Using some nifty footwork he slipped through the crack Bayou’s defense and proceeded to race down the field weaving around defenders for a 50 meter try.
Final score, Jays 41, Bayou 26. The Jays are now 2-0 in league play. Results from the St. Paul’s game coming soon, and then it’s on to Brother Martin.