The D1A Red River Collegiate Rugby Conference is coming up this Saturday April 1st. This competition should host some great college rugby match-ups. The inaugural Canterbury North America Red River Collegiate Rugby Championships will be held at Huns Field in Austin, TX. Gift-Time Rugby Network will be broadcasting the championship live.
The championship match between Baylor and LSU is on Saturday at 5:30 PM. The winner will have an automatic bid into the D1A USA Rugby playoffs and a shot at getting to the national championships. This should be an excellent showcase of this season’s talent and hard work from both sides. The Baylor Bears are ranked #1 in the Red River North division after they went 7-1 in league matches this spring. They are ready to take on Red River South division leader and #16 nationally ranked LSU with senior 8-man Peter Hamm.
Peter has been playing rugby for 8 years now and his experience as a player and captain has aided the Bears success. “I always try to lead by example on and off the pitch. Just trying to show my teammates that I’m a workhorse and that I do it for them and for the better of the team.”
However, Peter gave tremendous credit to his team and coaching staff and emphasized the joint effort behind Baylor Rugby. “We are constantly pushing each other to become better by consistently hold each other accountable whether that’s with workouts, with our practice, or with our dieting. We always challenge one another to be the best we can be on and off the pitch.” He went on the highlight the connection he has with his teammates. “Everyone on the team is best friends on and off the pitch which really goes a long way in team camaraderie and chemistry. The strongest aspect of our team is without a doubt the unbreakable brotherhood.”
The whole season Baylor has stressed the importance of fitness and focus on the pitch. On preparing for the upcoming championship Peter commented, “this week strategy is something we are trying to fine tune. We know that we’re going up against one of the best opponents of the year and that we’ve got to be on top of our game not only fitness-wise but strategically.”
LSU may be a nationally ranked team but Baylor is hungry for a chance to show what they can do. “No one gave us our spot in this championship. We earned it. Without a doubt we are very confident that it will be an 80-minute battle from kickoff to the whistle blow at the end.”
“No matter who we face this season we’ve always believed that we have a chance to win … ever since we beat Arkansas in the fall with a last second drop kick, we knew that we were a team to be reckoned with.”
“We definitely believe that we can win and that is our goal but when it comes Saturday we’re going to have to let our play speak for itself and we are really looking forward to the opportunity.”
Correction 3/29/2017: The article originally stated that Baylor was undefeated in league matches. Baylor actually went 7-1 with a loss to University of Oklahoma during the Fall.