Glendale Teams Fall to St. Mary’s College

by | Feb 26, 2018 | D1 Men, U23 Men

Merlins 26 – St. Mary’s 31
Glendale Raptors Academy 12 – St. Mary’s 58

Following a strong victory against the Austin Huns, the Glendale Merlins traveled to Moraga, California last Saturday to take on St. Mary’s College in a non-league match. Traveling with the D1 team was Glendale’s Raptors Academy squad, which played against another St. Mary’s side following the Merlins match. Merlins head coach Luke Gross was very complimentary of the Californian competition: “St. Mary’s is a well-oiled machine. Their physicality and quality of play was among the best we’ve seen this season.”

Glendale Merlins Rugby vs St. Mary's

Photo by Justin Purdy

The first half of the Division I match saw exceptional play by both teams. St. Mary’s struck first with a penalty conversion, but the Merlins rallied with converted tries at 17 and 21 minutes. St. Mary’s scored a try and conversion at 26 and 37 minutes, with an additional Glendale try and conversion in the 32nd minute. The Merlins led at the half, in front of St. Mary’s 21-17.

St. Mary’s came out strong in the second half, scoring and converting a try in the 44th minute. Glendale made it into the try zone six minutes later, but was unable to convert. A converted St. Mary’s try at 67 minutes secured victory, the final score 31-26. Coach Gross was magnanimous in defeat; attributing the Merlins loss to injuries suffered in the second half. “Our team played very well, tactfully and physically in the first half. Due to injuries in the second, some of our decision-making lapsed and St. Mary’s got the best of us.”

U23 Academy vs St. Mary's

Photo by Justin Purdy

Glendale’s Raptors Academy team traveled with the Merlins to compete against another St. Mary’s side. The California team dominated the first half of the match, scoring five tries, though unable to convert any. St. Mary’s led at the break 25-0. The Raptors Academy team was able to put points on the board in the second half, scoring two tries and converting one, but the St. Mary’s offense proved too formidable, scoring five more tries and converting all but one. The final score put the Moraga-based team ahead of Glendale 58-12.

In spite of the losses, Glendale’s teams played hard rugby, and gained valuable experience through the non-league competition. Merlins Head Coach Luke Gross embraced the knowledge gained on Saturday: “We are grateful to Saint Mary’s for this high quality match.  It really helped us grow as a team and we’ll take the lessons learned as we move forward into our next regular season league match.” The Raptors Academy named wing/full back Korbin Miller their player of the match. The Merlins D1 squad recognized the rugby acumen of Andrew “Shazza” Srokzynski, naming him their player of the match as he celebrated his 30th birthday on the pitch.

The Merlins have a bye this weekend, their next Division I match the team’s first home game: March 10 at 1pm Mountain Time. The Merlins will face an undefeated Austin Blacks team on Infinity Park’s turf field. March 10 will be fan appreciation day at Infinity Park, with a free exhibition match between New Orleans Gold and Glendale’s professional Raptors squad in addition to the D1 action. The Raptors play at 3pm Mountain Time. The Raptors Academy team play their next match on March 17, taking on Colorado State University in Ft. Collins.

Follow the Raptors Academy and Glendale Merlins on Facebook and Twitter for full-time scores on all games and additional information. All Merlins home games have free admission in 2018.

Andrew Srokzynski

Andrew Srokzynski
D1 Player of the Match

Korbin Miller

Korbin Miller
Academy Player of the Match

D1 Traveling Roster

  1. Giorgi Tsverava
  2. James Wilson
  3. Christopher Hathaway
  4. Andrew Srokzynski
  5. Brett Gallrein
  6. Kyle Stoffers
  7. Richard Davidson
  8. Alex Fitch

  10. Trevor Wilder
  11. Westley LaBorde
  12. Ryan Chavkin
  13. Clint Cook
  14. Nathan Faamatuainu
  15. Angel Mendez
  16. Juta Vakabua

  18. Devin Pearl
  19. Marcus Thomas
  20. Scott Smith
  21. Marshall Godfrey
  22. Torin Killeen
  23. George Bristow
  24. Isaiah Puryear
  • Head Coach: Luke Gross
  • Assistant Coach: Mike Wright
  • Trainer: Shauna Whitlow

Academy Traveling Roster

  1. TJ Downey
  2. Lole Veimau
  3. Alec Leddy
  4. Max Dacey ©
  5. Dylan Cahill
  6. Owen Hundt
  7. Joe Rusert-Cudy
  8. Jack Miller

  10. Carlo de Nysschen
  11. Mika Kruse
  12. Ty Carlson
  13. Pat Conway
  14. Siale Maka
  15. Ryan James
  16. Korbin Miller

  18. Zach Chorn
  19. Cam Tibbets
  20. Ziggy Tua
  21. Isaiah Puryear
  22. Zach Rademacher
  23. Jake Christmann
  24. Divan de Nysschen
  25. Angel Mendez
  • Head Coach: Dave Synnott

Photos by Justin Purdy