By: Coach of the Year Tara Murray & Professor of Creative Writing Becca Moose

March 25, 2018

The Renegades hosted Detroit on a chilly, but beautiful, Sunday morning in Somerville at the prestigious Immaculata High School.  Before even mentioning the on the field efforts of the teams, an immediate shout out is necessary for Alex Rumsey, Diana Valencia, Kat Hussey, and Kathleen Kerwin and BIG WEEN for making the weekend possible.  Mother nature’s dumping of snow on Wednesday made it impossible for Monmouth Rugby to host using our typical venue of Thompson Park. This left the club scrambling to find a turf field to accommodate the last minute schedule changes.  Kathleen “Weenie” Kerwin was able to call in a favor to her dad, “Big Ween” to secure the field for the matches at Immaculata High School. Thank you to everyone for handling the changes and still being able to play some top quality rugby!

Coming off of a 17-0 loss to Boston on Saturday, the women knew Detroit would come out swinging. Newly appointed, and possibly short-lived, Head Coach Christian Sloiweroiski, came in hot to the match to help lead the Renegades to their first season victory. He thought he was coming to coach a shuffleboard game at his local senior center, but made the best of the situation once realizing it was rugby. The Renegades kicked off the start the match and started with a strong, crushing pace. This smashing effort was led by Number 8 Liz Russoniello and her solid tackles to set the tone vs Detroit. After the first try by Liz, Detroit made their first crusade down the field to attempt to score on the Renegades. 10-year captain and Renegade leader, Diana Valencia, led the forwards in maintaining their composure and constantly attacking the offensive line. Forward Bitch of the Pitch, Nikki Zuck, welcomed each charging Detroit player with open arms as she took on tackle after tackle. Looking over at the backline, newly dubbed captain Wiener “Weenie” Kerwin, led the first cohesive back line since the Fall of 2017. Leandra “LFB” Berry was back with a vengeance after suffering a broken collar bone, cutting up Detroit’s defense and earned herself the Backs Bitch of the Pitch.  Detroit persisted and was finally able to break through the Renegade defense to score their one and only try.

Late in the first half, Detroit saw they were on the decline, so they tried to attack the Renegades only weak spot – kicking the ball at a young Durin Russinello.  Luckily, Liz used her mother forces screaming “PROTECT MY SON” across the pitch to build a force field around the young whippersnapper. Liz was not happy with the dirty move by Detroit, so she charged them in the 38th minute and scored her second try of the game.

~Half Time~

At the kick off of the second half, Detroit kicked to the Renegades.  The Renegades tried to keep their momentum going from the first half, but unfortunately, they ended up playing defense 95% of the second half.  As a credit to the Renegades, the defense never broke and was able to hold Detroit from scoring another try. New Head Coach, Christian Slkj!dfhadskl;ski, made a pivotal move late in the second half.  He subbed in Jackie “Big E” Mullens. He moved the chains. Without his genius substitution strategy, another Renegade try would not have been scored. Stitch gave Big E the ball on the 10 meter line at the 79th minute and in slow motion plowed through minimum 6 Detroit defensive players and scored her first ever rugby try! Zulu to come. Time expired as Amanda Rumsey sent the ball soaring through the uprights. The Renegades have done it! They have won their first game of the season. It was an excellent, hard fought first match back, but the Renegades were happily able to send Detroit back to 8 mile road with a 19-7 loss.

“The world on their shoulders as they run back to that 8 mile road ~Eminem”

~Becca Moose