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Warrior ruggers start season with two shutouts - Will host L.A. Cougars Saturday evening

The Fallbrook Rugby Club high school boys team began its 2009-10 season with two shutouts in December.

The Warriors, whose next game will take place at home Saturday evening against the Loyola High School (Los Angeles) team known as the L.A. Cougars, started the season with a 53-0 win at home December 12 against the Cathedral Catholic team and won 58-0

December 19 at home against the San Pasqual team.

“ good start for the varsity team,” said Fallbrook coach Mike Majewski.

Normally the junior varsity teams play a couple of quarters following the varsity game, but Fallbrook accumulated such a lead that its JV players were participating in the varsity contest by the second half.

“We were able to start subbing,” Majewski said. “Everybody’s getting a lot of playing time, which has been good for us.”

This year the team is captained by seniors Kyle Volan and John Hayden. “Everything’s working pretty well,” Majewski said. “We have some size this year, which is nice, and a lot of speed. We’re going to rely on speed and fitness once again to be our strengths.”

Majewski also noted that the team has more depth than the 2009 squad.

Rugby is not a CIF sport, but the Fallbrook Rugby Club has a high school boys team which plays both in a high school league and in under-19 club tournament competition. In 2009 the Fallbrook Rugby Club won the high school league’s Southern California championship before losing to Jesuit High School of Carmichael in the first-ever state championship match between the Southern California Youth Rugby League and the Northern California Youth Rugby League champions.

Other than that loss, Fallbrook’s only defeat during high school league play was a 10-9 loss to Back Bay, a team the Warriors had defeated earlier in the season. The Warriors won the Southern Division championship and won the Southern California Youth Rugby League title with a 65-0 win over the San Luis Obispo team which earned the Northern Division championship.

Fallbrook’s only other loss of the 2009 season was in a Southern California qualifying tournament for the national tournament; the Warriors lost to the L.A. Cougars, who were ranked fifth in the nation at the time.

The L.A. Cougars will travel to Fallbrook for the January 9 high school game. “We feel that this is a good rematch,” Majewski said.

That game will be played at Fallbrook High School and will have a 5 p.m. kickoff time.

While last year’s high school and club seasons overlapped, this year the high school league will mirror the CIF Winter sports season while the club competition will begin in late February.

“We’re basically taking the same high school team into the club season after this,” Majewski said.

The Southern California Rugby Football Union and the Pacific Coast Rugby Football Union which includes Northern California (and also covers Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Nevada) have collaborated to form a statewide Rugby California organization which sanctions youth rugby throughout the state, and Rugby California is the sanctioning body of both the high school league and the club competition.

In 2009, the high school league consisted of the Southern Division and the Northern Division with the two division champions playing for the Southern California Youth Rugby League championship. This year the Southern California league consists of three divisions; Fallbrook is in the Central Division along with San Pasqual, Cathedral, and St. Augustine.

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