Sunday saw years 8/9 and 10 attend the Festival of Rugby organised excellently by the RFU. All our students played with determination and showed real sportsmanship. Below you can read match reports on all the games.
Year 8 team fully contributed to the success of the afternoon. They played a series of matches against some very good traditional Rugby Union Schools.
St John Fisher School Harrogate
Bingley Grammar School
Prince Henry Grammar School
South Craven School
The first game started poorly and St John Fisher were far too experienced (especially in the ruck) and much quicker than our boys and ran out easy winners, 6 tries to 0. Elements to improve on were identified for the second game and they played much better to beat Bingley Grammar 2-1, tries from Chude Isiuwe and Adan Terralonge. The third match was against Princess Henry and after finding ourselves 2-1 up with a minute on the clock, we gave away a penalty and allowed Prince Henry to tie the score at 2-2, which was slightly disappointing. Both tries in this game were from Terralonge. The last game was against South Craven and after some early good defence, 2 excellent break away tries from Adam Terralonge and a good late try from Jamie Pico gave the lads a deserved victory 3-1 to finish the afternoon off on a high.
Overall a very good afternoons work and great experience for this emerging team who up to 18 months ago had never played a game of rugby before, so to compete and beat some of teams we played yesterday was very pleasing to see.
Well done to them all. Match report Mr D Toronczak
Hedir Awudu, Jamie Pico, Franz Cajayon, Christopher Pizarras, Laxmi Rai, James Gallucci, Gabriel Kalisz, Daniel Villanueva, Danae Faal, Denis Tifantals, Jimmy O'Neil-Tolley, Chude Isiuwe, Adam Terralonge , Gauderic Totap.
Our year 9 rugby struggled but for reasons out of their control unfortunately. After 5 lads had to pull out due to injury and other commitments we took a squad of 9 to a 10-a-side tournament, clearly not ideal. We managed a 100% record in the tournament of 5 from 5! Regrettably, the fact that our joint top scorer with a solitary try was a lad that we borrowed from Wetherby High School indicates the reality of our 100% record.
In all seriousness, this may sound strange but although we lost all of our matches the lads performed admirably. They showed real determination and dedication to the cause. They played some really good rugby and definitely put their bodies on the line by the look of the battered, bruised and exhausted team that dragged themselves to the minibus after the last match. They conducted themselves graciously in defeat and tried their best to keep smiling throughout what was a tough afternoon.
It really is hard to single anybody out but individuals deserving of a special mention are Darren “hitman” Sjolander who tackled like a demon all afternoon, Ben Leonard who probably had his best games for the school and Leon Kowal who demonstrated that Rugby is another skill that he can tick off his increasing list of talents.
Match report by Mr Coady
Darren Sjolander, Damola Shofoluwe, Joseph Kirton, Matthew Buckley, Jacob Angus, Ben Leonard, Isaac Oldcorn, Josh Day, Leon Kowal.
We were originally entered into the festival tournament (designed for weaker sides) opposed to being in the 'elite' finals event. However, we were thrown into the finals event, at the last minute, along with 7 other 'Rugby Union Schools'. A daunting task, but one to relish was the general consensus when we found out.
SBSJ 2 - 1 South Craven
SBSJ 1- 3Horsforth
SBSJ 3- 3Bingley Grammar
SBSJ finished 2nd in the group stages.
3rd v 4th Playoff Game
SBSJ3- 2Ilkley Grammar
SBSJ finished 3rd out of 8 finalist teams.
To finish 3rd - beating some schools who take their Rugby very seriously, was very pleasing. Especially considering we played with a man less due to injury in all but our first game.
Man of the tournament - Jack Savage
Match report written by team captain - Jack Savage:
The tournament started off by SBSJ turning up to find out there were no opponents to play, after some mixing about we got moved up into a different league to play better quality teams.
Back to what SBSJ does best we got underway with the first game. A 2-1 against South Craven with some brilliant play shipping the ball out wide Luke Handol set up Jacob Dunn with a magnificent overhead catch to dive over the line, the first of many tries of the campaign. The game was filled with good play from both sides as South Craven equalised. We went again as Alex Handol stormed over the try line to put the game to bed.
We went into the second game with Confidence knowing we'll be versing a good side A slow start made sure the opposition could take the chance and scored, leaving SBSJ 1-0 down however as we woke up some great moves by SBSJ means a great drive from Luke Handol to do a runaround with Jack Savage offloading the ball to Savage on the wing to dash over the line. However, good structure left the opposition winning 3-1.
Onto the third game we go , learning from our mistakes, knowing a win would secure us a second place slot in the league. Excellent ball work from SBSJ found Jack Savage able to use his footwork and find the try line twice from this. 2-0 to SBSJ found us sitting comfortably in second place, on the other hand Bingley bounced back scoring another 2 tries to make it 2-2. Some brilliant power and communication meant the Handol twins could push us over the line that last one time to make it 3-2 to SBSJ. In the dying seconds of the game an unwise decision was made by Alex Handol which lead a howler of a kick which pea rolled its way into the hands of a Bingley player to get over the line. The draw was still enough to put us into the game for 3rd or 4th place playoff against Ilkley.
Once again quick offloads from the ruck and in-game allowed Jack Savage to get over the try line. As Ilkey shipped the ball side to side they managed to squeeze through to make it 1-1. SBSJ reacted quickly with some outstanding rips, drives and tackling from the likes of Josh Chima, Owen Rodil and Harkaran Singh once again finding Jack Savage to exploit the gaps dragging SBSJ into the lead once again. The game ended as SBSJ finished 3rd overall. A great performance from every single player on the field and some well worked tries. We go again to seek what challenges we have coming in the future.