And so it began. With a healthy showing of over thirty alumni readying for kickoff, the captains for the alumni and the college engaged in the annual battle; are we playing four, 15 minute, quarters or regular halves? With Ian “Sean White” Mueller in no mindset for losing, he tried to dismiss the Alumni’s kind offer of playing quarters and became irate when Logan “Oh my Ribs” Honeycutt chimed in that he was good with eighths, and disgruntled he settled for two, thirty minute, halves. But that was a choice that he would come to regret.
The alumni had been descending on Charleston for a few days; Jeff “Jazzy” Siedel was so excited he turned up on Wednesday. By Friday night the alumni were getting up to full strength, announcing to the town that they were back with the finesse that only the rugby team can achieve decked out in social jerseys.
While tucking the children into bed, Sean White read a fairytale to his young team:
The alumni are out on the town as I post this, I hope you are not. Some good news, there are missing several of their best players and we stand a real chance of beating them tomorrow. I just listened to them threaten me with death on the field for the last two and a half hours so lets go out there and SHOCK THE WORLD TOMORROW!”
With a brief reminder from uncle Andy “Wandy” Evans that “you were threatened in other ways, not death”, the thoughts of the alumni returned to the important issues at hand.
Festivities continued and some pressing matters were concluded; with this being the tenth anniversary of the club, we took the steps to cement our first ten years through ratifying the Constitution of the club (available on the website). Elections followed as did the inaugural induction to the Hall of Fame with Brad “Box” Burns and Iljia Velkovic becoming the first two names emblazoned on the plaque. Much merriment continued on into the night and then, with the dawning of the rugby day, we took to the field to teach the children a lesson.
Convinced that they were in a better position, having secured halves over eighths, the College proceeded to lose the toss, which would become the first of many losses that day. The alumni kicked off and after a tepid start, the fortitude of the alumni soon kicked in. Jon “Head/Fatty/Grandpapa” Hansen made some powerful drives, breaking tackles and advancing the team up the field. Strong rucking from the forwards, who included Steve “The Animal” Leamon, Greg “IDF” Fronda, and Joey “I’ve been sharpening my elbows” Ingham led to some early scores, and within no time the alumni had built up a solid 17-0 lead. Kicks from Grandpa “Pip’s forgotten his real name” Grandpa and tries from Austin Coon, George “George Play’s wing now?” Woolstan and Lawson “Judge” Ballard quickly racked up the score and by half it was turning into a rout.
The second half picked up where the first left off. Quick scores by a host of players, including Wade “Easter” Berreth, Paul “I’m half the man I was” Fowler, and Rupert “Pip” Munro finalized the result. With the sound of Logan wailing about his femur the alumni rounded the game off with a convincing 46-0 win.
While the score may show a very one-sided game, the effort and potential shown by the college was very encouraging. No-one can say that this isn’t a rebuilding year, but the effort and raw talent shown by the team is a great sight. In the coming year they will be able to learn more about the game, and develop their abilities to the level that they show through effort. There’s a lot of potential in this club, and at the first major milestone of the club, it’s great to see that the team will carry on the great traditions of before.
The alumni association will be doing its part to try to develop this and we hope that all alumni will continue to be actively involved in the team. Thanks to everyone who helped make this weekend possible, from the organizers on the alumni and college teams, to everyone who paid dues. Two people deserve a special thank you for taking a leadership role in the financial development of the team; Sam Cook and Philip “Flip” Levi, both went above and beyond with significant donations – thank you to them. We’ve got a bright future ahead for the club – the first ten years were a great success – here’s to the next ten!
Rupert “Pip” Munro — Alumni Association Fundraising Chair