The 3rd annual Blackout Tournament in Charleston, SC was held on the 9th of April. The returning champions, the College of Charleston Cougars, were set to take on the Citadel, UNC-Wilmington, and Appalachian State University. The first game of the day was CofC-A vs the Citadel. The Cougars were ready to take their cross town rivals after a not-so-stellar performance against the cadets in matrix play. CofC displayed excellent defense in the 1st half and capitalized on an early opportunity as Shaun White scored the opening try of the tournament. Later in the half, Austin Coon took a pass from Shaun and drove through several cadets on the way to another try. The 2nd half was much of the same as CofC began to poor on the points, continuing to display great tackling. There were tries scored by "Tall" Jon Bernstein off of a nifty lineout play, Joey Ingham off of a half-somersault, George "Big Dawg" Woolston off of a timely overload, and by, Zulu Warrior, Jeremy "Penguin" Tindal who finished his try with a special celebration. The Cougars yielded a try and a couple conversions, but the Citadel was clearly outmatched for 50min.
The 2nd match of the day was between CofC-B and Appalachian State (AHO). The young Cougar squad fought hard and showed promise of a bright future for the club, but, in the end, AHO proved to be too much for CofC-B and took the match convincingly.
The 3rd match was played between CofC-A and UNCW-B. The Clam-diggers were determined to give CofC all they could handle, but about midway through the 1st half, Shaun White passed the ball to Austin Coon, who immediately looked back inside to Shaun, setting up White for his 2nd try of the day. This match was competitive early on as CofC clung to a 5 point lead at half time, but in the 2nd half, CofC blew it open. Ray Chappell earned a Zulu and then added 1 more try for good measure. George "Big Dawg" Woolston displayed excellent awareness as he hopped into the back line, received a pass from Shaun White, passed the ball to Austin Coon, and then looped Coon, who floated a ball out to the Dawg for his 2nd try of the tourney. JJ Garrell explained that he wanted to keep the game interesting, so he caught a kickoff and kicked a line drive directly into the hands of one of the Clam-diggers in stride; the play resulted in a penalty conversion for UNCW. Garrell made up for the play on the next kickoff as he caught the kick and broke several tackles on the way to a single-handed try. The win gave CofC a spot in the Blackout Championship.
After a lunch break, the next game turned out to be the game of the day, as AHO took on division rival, UNCW. The match was back and forth with opportunities to score by both teams. The match a defensive struggle and it was clear that whoever score 1st would win the match. The team that scored was AHO, placing App State in the Championship vs CofC.
The Citadel played 2 more matches on the day. The 1st was against UNCW-B/CofC-B. the 2nd was against UNCW-A to see who would receive 3rd place. Citadel won the 1st match and then lost the 2nd; therefore, 4th place in the 2011 Blackout Tournament went to the Citadel, while UNCW claimed 3rd.
After 2 matches and being in the sun for 9 hours straight, the Championship match was a tough one to say the least. CofC fought hard, but D-II juggernaut, AHO, was clearly the more skilled team. App scored many tries, but the Cougars kept fighting, determined to not be shut out. Late in the 2nd half, with CofC 20meters out, Joey Ingham quick tapped after a penalty and popped the ball off to Austin Coon sprinting to the weak-side. Coon cut it up, stiff armed a defender, and stretched out to score the final try of the season. AHO won the tournament, rightfully so, but CofC gave an outstanding effort and took home 2nd place in the Blackout Tournament for the 2nd time in 3 years.
2/16 Citadel @ CofC
2/23 CofC @ Coastal
3/16 Davidson @ CofC
3/23 CofC @ UNCW
SoCon Tournament TBA