Fresh blood welcomed as men's rugby team continues to build upon success

Carole Morris-Underhill
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Published on August 26, 2014

Jacob Zelman looks to where he's about to land as a Pictou county player takes him down during Aug. 23 rugby action in Windsor.

Published on August 26, 2014

Luke MacPherson holds on tight to the ball as Pictou County players try to steal it from him.

Published on August 26, 2014

Kyle Pritchard stopped this Pictou County player from advancing the ball any further up the pitch during a great defensive move Aug. 23. Also pictured for the Machine is Joe Seagram.

Published on August 26, 2014

Matthew MacLean evades being tackled by members of the Pictou County team Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

Matt Foster didn't hesitate to tackle this Pictou County player down to the ground. Also pictured for the Machine are Adam Boyd and Joe Seagram.

Published on August 26, 2014

Jacob Zelman braces for impact as Pictou County rugby players try to take him down during a Machine run Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

Axel Lawrence makes a clearance kick for the Machine.

Published on August 26, 2014

Jessie Lawrence and Adam Roebuck, on the ground, work in unison to take down this Pictou player.

Published on August 26, 2014

Eamonn Sullivan and Joe Seagram attempt to steal the ball from Pictou County Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

Kyle Pritchard maintains possession of the ball as a Pictou County player attempts to take him down.

Published on August 26, 2014

Ian Duey pushes a Pictou County player away from a downed Machine player as he gets in position for a ruck.

Published on August 26, 2014

A Pictou County rugby player passes the ball just as the Machine were closing in on him during a men's division II rugby match in Windsor Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

Kyle Pritchard gets ready to tackle a Pictou County player.

Published on August 26, 2014

With no Pictou County rugby players nearby, Axel Lawrence rushes to the goal line to get a try for the Hants County Machine Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

Ian Duey holds his ground as the Machine men get in a position to keep the ball.

Published on August 26, 2014

Axel Lawrence makes the catch during a line out against the Pictou County RFC.

Published on August 26, 2014

Captain Ian Duey charges ahead as the Machine push hard for a try late in the second half of their last home game Aug. 23.

Published on August 26, 2014

The 2014 Machine men's team posed for a team photo following their last home game of the season. Pictured are, from left, back row: James Hardy, Godfrey Kenny, Joe Seagram, Ben Brown, Adam Boyd, Savea Gordon, Tom MacKinnon, Jacob Zelman, Evan Chambers, Ian Duey, Matthew Foster, Jason Stuart, Matthew MacLean, and Andrew Hines; middle row: Luke MacPherson, Eamonn Sullivan, Kyle Pritchard, Jason Cookson, Adam Roebuck, Jordan Cassidy, and RJ Moulton; front row: Jesse Lawrence and Axel Lawrence.

Although the men's rugby team lost their final home game of the season, both the coach and the team's captain are proud of the strides the club has made this year.

Godfrey Kenny, who coaches the Windsor Hants County Rugby Football Club's division 2 men's team, said he was impressed with how the team fared against the first place Pictou County RFC Aug. 23.

“It was a really good, collective performance. There was a lot of good players out there. It wasn't just one or two guys,” said Kenny, later noting, “They really hit the breakdowns hard... and there was some nice strong tackling.”

The hometown team managed to score three tries against the powerful club. It was a feat that spoke volumes to Kenny about how well the team has meshed this year, and what they can build upon leading up to their 2015 season.

Last year, the coaching staff set the goal to recruit new players. Kenny said they succeeded in doing just that.

“This year, we've been averaging 20 to 25 guys at practice so that's one thing that we did (well),” said Kenny. “Now, what we want to do is really develop their skills and their knowledge of the game. We will do that in the off season.”

Ian Duey, the team captain, also looked to the positives as he reflected on the season that was, and considered the future.

“In general, I was proud of the team,” said Duey, noting the team was plagued with injuries.

“The boys played well all season. The second division was as tight as it had ever been,” Duey said, adding that there wasn't a significant gap separating the first place team from the middle of the pack.

Both Kenny and Duey remarked on how young the team was this year, and predicted that as the players become more experienced and build up their confidence, the team will see much success.

“We had a lot of youth this year and we just hope to keep building on that for next year,” Duey said.

The average age of a player on the team is 20 years, Kenny noted. Many of the younger players have played high school rugby at Avon View, King's-Edgehill, or in Sackville.

“We're getting better and getting better. We're just not as experienced as other sites,” said Kenny.

“I'm really looking forward to next year. I think next year we could do it and... win it,” he said, referring to the 11-team division championship.

Kenny said the club welcomes all skill levels and ages, and hopes to build upon its success in 2015.

“Young guys, old guys, every guy is welcome in our club,” said Kenny.

To learn more, or to contact the team, visit www.windsorrugby.ca.

 

Organizations: Windsor Hants County Rugby Football Club, Windsor Machine, King's-Edgehill School

Geographic location: Sackville, Windsor, Nova Scotia Hants County West Hants King's-Edgehill School

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