UMW Comes Back To Win D1AA Fall Final

University of Mary Washington is the fall D1AA champion after riding a wild second half to defeat St. Joseph’s 37-13 on Sunday in Greenville, SC.

St. Joe’s produced an impressive first 40 minutes, highlighted by a hard-nosed forward effort led by lock Mickey Chapple. And with Jimmy Wolfer unleashing his slick sidestepping, UMW found itself backpedaling more than the Mothers are used to against their opponents.

Wolfer put St. Joe’s ahead 3-0 with a penalty goal, and while Mary Washington replied with a try, St. Joe’s led again after a long period of attack. The Hawks tried to put it over wide and finally saw Chapple bull across the line up the middle. Wolfer converted for a 10-5 lead.

Wolfer added a drop goal for a 13-5 advantage that held until halftime.

The Comeback

In the second half, UMW slowly started to come back, but at the same time the Mothers were sometimes hurt by their impatience.

Some promising breaks were undercut by a too-risky offload or simply the lack of desire to set a ruck and go again.

Still, hooker Tom Williams thundered over and converted to make it 13-12 six minutes in, and Williams added a penalty to nudge his team ahead 15-13 a few minutes later.

After that, the UMW backs started to connect. Flyhalf Michael Sacks and No. 8 Matthew Gordon, both big bodies, started to push back the St. Joe’s defenders, and while fullback Bradlee Nichols was garnering attention, it was wing Nathan Neri who finished off the crucial try to extend that lead.

Neri put over a second, with some impressive elusive running, to stretch UMW's lead to 27-13. 

Mary Washington began to kick to space to pin St. Joe’s back and put the pressure on the Hawks. It worked. The Mothers almost scored another try but settled for a penalty from Williams, and then Gordon crashed through for the final try.

St. Joe's Pride

St. Joe’s did superbly all season and led at halftime because of a combination of teamwork and bravery. But Mary Washington was too big and wore down the St. Joe’s defense, and the Mothers kept their composure despite being in the unfamiliar position of trailing.

Neri, Gordon, and scrumhalf Harry Masters were all excellent for UMW, but the coaches pointed to locks Phillip Harrison and Lewis Grant and flankers Tucker Chewning and Jack Levine for their defensive play and work rate.

UMW's Dominant Fall 

Mary Washington finishes the fall 11-0, outscoring opponents 579-102. The 37 points the Mothers tallied in the fall final was the least number of points they scored all fall, and the winning margin of 24 was also UMW's smallest of the season.

Players, Even A Whole Pack, To Watch At Midwest RCT

Allison Bradfield
GHSNC Columbia vs Warsaw

The Midwest RCT will showcase a wide range of future collegiate and All American talent.

Weekend Watch Guide: Rivalries And Up-And-Comers

The Moment When The Eagles Won It

A longtime rivalry enters its 60th chapter, and tomorrow's Eagles get a chance to show themselves in two tournaments almost 2,000 miles from each other.

5 Players To Watch In USA vs. Canada

© John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports
AJ MacGinty Weighs In On Monumental Victory For USA

The latest installment of the USA-Canada rivalry this Saturday in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is a case of two teams going in different directions.

MLR Season Wraps, One Playoff Spot On The Line

Rugby Players Visit Texas Children's Cancer Center

The inaugural Major League Rugby season comes down to this coming weekend to finalize the playoff spots.

USA Names Lineup To Face Canada Live On FloRugby

© John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports
Miss Pass 28: So There Was This USA-Scotland Game

USA Men's 15s head coach Gary Gold has made three changes to Eagles' starting lineup as they take on rival Canada on Saturday at the Wanderers Grounds in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Eight Changes For Canada Against USA

David Barpal
Why Canada 7s Team's Mascot Is Called Captain Greene

Canada Men's 15s head coach Kingsley Jones has made several changes to his lineup to face the USA Saturday in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

3 Reasons Why Great NW Challenge Is A Must-Watch

Rugby Oregon
Overtime Magic For Danville And Royal Irish

This weekend's Great Northwest Challenge in Boise, Idaho, is as compelling a rugby tournament as you'll find in the USA, because—simply put—it produces Eagles and it produces surprises.

USA MNT To Play Ireland In Dublin In November

Colleen McCloskey

USA Rugby has confirmed that the men's 15s national team will play World Rugby No. 2-ranked Ireland on November 24 at Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

Why HS All-Star Tournaments Matter: 9 Rugby Stars Who Played In Them

David Barpal
Alex Maughan: The Job Of The Captain Is To Calm The Boys Down

Do you remember the first time you saw Hanco Germishuys, McKenzie Hawkins, or Ruben de Haas play?

Great NW Challenge: Don't Miss These Dominant Duos

Atavus Utah Scores Off The Scrum

Every player at the Regional Cup Tournament (RCT) level is individually talented. However, a prospect's talent alone isn't the only attribute that can catch a USA Rugby or college scout's eye.