Sunday, October 30, 2011

New thing #4: Rugby playoffs

We traveled to Detroit today to watch the Division III men's rugby playoffs. It felt a little like old times when every weekend was spent at the soccer fields, but now rugby has become The Boy's passion. The day was beautifully crisp and clear - a great day to "bleed and breathe rugby". To be honest, I don't understand much about this game. The Boy played a few games in a pick-up league last year,  but never had a win. This year he is on an official team with funding, a coach, and a winning record.

The Boy plays Hooker for the Oakland University team. He's the guy in the scrum (huddle) who is propped up by the other players so he can use his feet to "hook" the ball and win possession for this team. Ranked fourth, the OU team faced the first place team in the semi finals this morning. As games go it was fairly mild - a couple bruised ribs, a knot on the head, one guy nearly lost a finger - and OU dominated the play. They shut out the first place team and moved on to the finals. There the men played hard and with heart, but when the final whistle blew they were down three points. It was a bittersweet end to a great season, as a young inexperienced group of players formed a brotherhood on and off the field. They took the loss with grace and are already looking forward to the next season. I'll be right there cheering them on.

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