Men’s rugby knocked off by Niagara U in 24-19 loss


Jennifer Brzyski

Christian Feickert returned to the team on Friday after a concussion held him out the prior two games.

Jahvon Graham, Reporter

Saturday night under the lights, the University of Niagara defeated the Buffalo State men’s club rugby team, 24-19.
“That game was one that everyone will probably remember,” co-captain Justin Brzyki said. “The atmosphere and intensity was unlike no other. The game was close all the way through. It wasn’t until the final minutes a winner was decided.”
The offense struggled throughout, managing only 19 points. Tim Kaiser scored a try along with Ethan Walsh and Jason Fuentes. Kicker Trevor Wilder added two out of three two-point conversion kicks.
“We’ve had some close games, this time we were just on the other side of the scoreboard,” August Edwards said.
Having clinched a playoff spot with a win last week, many starters didn’t see the field. Some players even played out of position.
With a bye week upcoming, the players have a chance to rest up before the final playoff push. After the bye week, they will take on Lemoyne in the last game of the regular season. The game has the potential to affect seeding, so it’s likely that a full slate of starters will play.
August Edwards is looking forward to the bye week to “keep working hard at our weaknesses and just practicing, practicing and practicing.”
“Our coaches thought we should move a few people around,” said Edwards, who didn’t play in Saturday’s loss. “We even played some new players.”
Going into the playoffs, the team wants to use their experience and play tough, grinding games that go down to the wire.
Luckily, the team is getting captain Christian Feickert back at the right time. Feickert saw game action on Saturday for the first time since suffering a concussion three weeks ago.
“We have heart, we show effort and we never give up,” head coach Rob Jenkinson said. “You always want to see those aspects out of your team.”
The players have a lot of confidence going into the playoffs and believe they have all the necessary components to make a deep playoff run.
“Without a doubt, I believe it’s all about putting all the pieces together,” Edwards said.
The team is using the loss as motivation to come back stronger next game.
“I can see us going deep in the playoffs,” Brzyski said. “We can use these tough losses as fire to make us work harder. This was an opponent that fought the whole game. In the playoffs, you have to show up and play all game.”

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