October 14: Blues at Wisconsin RFC

By October 14, 2023Uncategorized

Results: October 14
Kansas City Blues at Wisconsin RFC


The Boys in Blue traveled North once again this weekend, this time to Madison WI to take on Wisconsin Rugby Club.  The Northern chill and rain met them in Des Moines, IA and would be a constant companion the rest of the way.  Iowa football was also in town to play Wisconsin that weekend and the town was full and buzzin.  In fact, the boys had to stay about 45 min out of town at a Deer Lodge Hotel fully equipped with deer antler toilet paper holders.  Also, an indoor water park with slide and all!  The boys did not have time to indulge in the water park as the vans arrived around 11 PM and 2 AM respectively.  But the next morning they woke up with a readiness to brave the elements and take the first step necessary towards a playoff berth.  The facilities at Wisconsin, as always, were the finest in the game.  The field was soft but well kept despite the days of rain leading up to the game.  The kickoff went up into a sky as spitting rain came down, and the game was on.


The first 20 minutes of the game looked a lot like the first 20 minutes of the game last year in Wisconsin.... all Wisconsin.  The ball stayed in the Blues half and spent a lot of time inside our own 22 for that first fourth of the game.  The Wisconsin 10 has a good boot and made us pay on some penalties, combined with a few knock ons and ball slips (the ball was wet and slippery as hell), made for the deep in our own territory situation.  But a few goal line stands and some tough defense kept Wisconsin from scoring on those deep opportunities.  In fact, the first score of the game came from a very nice kick by #10 Sam Chapman that pinned Wisconsin deep in their own territory.  A shank of a return kick was caught at about the 15 by the Blues, passed through the hands and eventually dotted down by wing Daniel Tapusoa, conversion by Sam Chapman.  Wisconsin did respond shortly thereafter with a score of their own after working the ball down the field and employing a series of forward crashes.  Conversion missed to make the game 7-5 Blues.  A Blues lineout lead to a nice run by Jimmy Lillis after Wisconsin failed to engage a maul and was finished off with a pick and go by import lock Jono Bloomfield.  12-5 Blues and halftime.

The sun came out for the second half and so did the Blues normal game.  We looked cleaner in play and more held together in the second half.  Next score came off a breakaway that turned into forward pack crashes on the goal line and was eventually scored by flanker Danny Apgar.  Minutes later another offensive possession was finished off with a hard line and a skidding dive for the try line by center Greg Fry.  Wisconsin is a physical team and things got a little chippy and cheeky towards the end, which was sort of the persona of the whole game.  A fistfight in the mud.  Wisconsin capitalized on such activities when #8 Evan Albeck emerged from a scuffle with a breakaway, eventually chipping and chasing his own kick and finishing with a diving try.  That brought the score to 26-10.  Lastly a Blues possession worked the ball down the field and entered the goal line area. Forwards crashes sucked the defense in and the ball was spun wide to the backs and was scored by Nick Hartey for last score of the game which resulted in a final score of 31-10.


Play did get a little chippy but we respect the hell out of Wisconsin Rugby Club and we would play them any day.  It's an honor to get to play at such nice facilities and they are the most gracious hosts you could ask for. The post game meal was awesome and very Wisconsin-y (baked potato bar, turkey chili, etc).  We want to extend our sincerest thank you to WRC and look forward to our trip up there next year.

And this brings us to this weekend.  The biggest home gameday weekend for the club in a long long time.  First, our D2 side plays longtime cross town rival KCRFC at high noon.  KCRFC is on a run with multiple league wins in a row, and the Blues D2 is coming off a big decisive win against Omaha and the two will battle it out for league standings and bragging rights.  We don't have to tell the Blues nation how much this one means.  And then immediately after, the D1 side takes on the Chicago Lions in a de-facto playoff game. The Blues sit in second place in the Western Conference with 20 PTS the Lions in third place with 16.  A Kansas City win would clinch a playoff berth and send the Blues to play the top side of the Eastern conference in the semifinals.  Most likely Cincinatti.  The big game is here, the time is now, the destiny is in our own hands.  We would love to see all our supporters out this weekend.  Forecast as of right now for Saturday is a high of 72 and sunny.  City week and D1 playoff berth on the line, could we ask for anything more?  #LBO3!


Kansas City Blues D1 at Wisconsin RFC

1) Isikeli Fukofuka 2) Mike Lillis 3) Seif Esylad 4) Jonathan Bloomfield 5) Matt Wirken 6) Shundell Williams 7) Danny Apgar 8) Jimmy Lillis (C) 9) Tuuaga Lavea 10) Sam Chapman 11) Daniel Tapusoa 12) Greg Fry (VC) 13) Ryan Ellison 14) Osi Nauer 15) Kyle Renner 16) Jon Khalil 17) Scott McAvoy 18) Chase Higgins 19) Stephen Lomas 20) Zach Cohen 21) Blakeston Bryant 22) Nick Hartley 23) Cam Kirkland

Scott Kram - Head Coach
Jamie Dever - Pack Coach
Darragh Leader - Backs Coach
Casey Cummings - Assistant Coach
Darlwin Nelson - Assistant Coach
Kyle Izard - Manager