Last week, Penn blooded more than 12 new players and a new look coaching staff in a series of two City Six 7's tournaments hosted at LaSalle University and Penn Park.
With little match practice under their belts, Penn viewed the two City Six 7's tournaments as an opportunity to provide new players with ample game time to learn the game, as well as fine tune combinations for the upcoming Ivy 7s Championships.
At LaSalle, despite a slow start against an experienced St Joe's side, Penn bounced back with two very convincing wins against Drexel and LaSalle. Veterans Alex Salazar and Nathan Xu were impressive in their performances, alongside freshman Finn Teoh and newcomer Aidan MacPherson. A lack of match fitness however, saw Penn fall away from Temple in their final match of the tournament, squandering a lead to grant Temple a deserving victory.
On a lovely Sunday afternoon at Penn, another slow start against St Joes was followed up with an impressive attacking display against Drexel, courtesy of the new structures implemented by coaches Tiger Bax and Tyler May. Penn concluded the tournament with another close loss against Temple.
Penn looks to send a mix of experienced and new players to the upcoming Ivy 7s Championships, hosted by Harvard University on the 13th of April. In what will undoubtably turn out to be an exciting display of running rugby from all teams, Penn looks to utilise the tournament as a platform to turn the club into a genuine Ivy League contender in the coming years.
Last Saturday, Brown came down to Penn for the Ivy League semi-finals.
Despite a close contest in the first 20 minutes, Brown broke away in the last part of the first half and capitalized on multiple Penn errors. The half finished with Brown leading, 31-7.
In the second half, Penn got back in the game, scoring a rapid succession of tries to win the half but lose the game, with a final score of 45-26.
The boys left with their heads held high and hope to take the success of this season into their Spring 7s season.
Thank you to all of our friends and family for the support this season!
Penn traveled to Princeton on Saturday for the team’s final regular season game. At stakes was a place in the Ivy Playoffs, with both Penn and Princeton one win away from clinching a place in the Playoffs.
The game started at 1:30 in the midst of heavy wind, light rain, and a soaked natural grass pitch. Jonathan Lee made a quick break off the kickoff, putting Penn spitting distance from the try line. After an aggressive sequence of play close to the try line, Penn was able to lock down an early try from Jonathan Lee.
Just after the 20th minute, Penn capitalized on a Princeton error and Nick Biden delivered an unbelievable full field sprint to score the second try. However, it came at the cost of a hamstring injury, forcing Biden out of the rest of the game. The kick was converted by Frans Otten.
Despite a dominant display from Penn, Princeton put away a quick try minutes before halftime.
Penn 12 - 7
Off the kickoff, Penn capitalized on another Princeton error to score a try by Jonathan Lee. Kick converted by Nathan Xu.
Penn 19 - Princeton 7
The second half saw an aggressive counterattack from Princeton which led to a quick try in the 66th minute.
Penn 19 - Princeton 14
Nail biting close calls for both teams occurred close to the try line and the game was anyone’s in the final phases.
In the final minutes, a forceful effort from Penn matched the aggressive counterattack Princeton had launched in the second half. Jonathan Lee was pulled out inches away from the try line, keeping Princeton in until the very end. After a whirlwind 80 minutes, Penn was victorious and the lads couldn’t be happier.
Final Score: Penn 19 - Princeton 14
Penn traveled to Cornell where they put on a dominate display against the home side. Despite a slow first half, Penn came out swinging in the second half to record a major win.
After many injuries in the Harvard game, Penn traveled to Brown where they suffered a tough defeat to a strong Brown side.
Despite a strong start which left Penn with a 13-10 lead at the half, Harvard dominated the second half giving them a strong victory over the Penn side.
Thank you to our fans for coming out in record numbers. Thank you also to Harvard for a great game and for making the trip down to Philadelphia.
On Saturday, Columbia Rugby travelled down to Penn for the first game of the Ivy League season. The game was fierce, but Penn's offensive dominance left them the winner. We'd like to thank Columbia Rugby for a great game. Until next time.
Penn 40 - Columbia 10
Our try scorers last weekend were:
Tshepo Yane (1)
Teddie Levenfiche (1)
Avery Hoffman (1)
Nick Biden (1)
Adam Kirsh (1)
Han Ng (1)
Conversions made by:
Frans Otten (4)
Nathan Xu (1)
We are excited to announce that Penn Rugby alum Conor Lamb has won his congressional race.
We'd like to thank the Daily Pennsylvanian for featuring Penn Rugby's recent success at the Philadelphia City Six tournaments.
A strong performance by the boys in the club last week.
We are currently 8-0 in the city six series so far in this season, beating every team we've played against so far.
Sophomore Nick Biden accumulated another 7 tries last week, totaling at 14 in the past two weeks.
Sophmore Alex Salazar scored 3 tries this week, totaling at 6 now.
Freshman Jonathan Lee scored 2 tries this week.
Nathan Xu, Camilo Navarro, and Adam Kirsh all scored 1 try, and Nathan Xu got 2 kicks in too.
The club set the tone for this year’s City Six 7s tournament series on Wednesday night, posting a spotless 4-0 record on its way to winning the St. Joe’s leg of the series.
The Penn men beat La Salle University, Villanova University and Temple University twice to claim the championship, which was hosted by St. Joseph’s University.
Sophomore speedster Nick Biden was unanimously voted Penn’s player of the tournament, scoring in each match and racking up 7 tries altogether. Senior captain Nathan Xu registered three tries and went 9 of 12 on kicks. Sophomore Ted McLennan added one try, and seniors Alex Salazar and Jack Smallwood scored 3 tries and 1 try, respectively. Smallwood slotted his sole kick attempt.
The City Six tournament series is an annual competition among the six college rugby programs in central Philadelphia. Tournaments are held weekly on Wednesday evenings during the spring semester with the location rotating between the competing universities. St. Joe’s was the first installment of this year’s series. The competition continues next week at La Salle.