Saturday is Rugby Day and Life West hosted visiting teams from Sacramento in the form of the Amazons (women’s), Capitols and Blackhawks (both mens). It proved a huge success on and off the field.
Starting the day’s proceedings, Life West women’s team, the Gladiatrix were up for the challenge against defending NorCal champion and National Championship finalists, Sacramento Amazons. The Amazons are a different team from last year with a number of the team retiring. The ‘Trix’ went on to win the game in convincing fashion by a mammoth 103 points to 14. A number of players standing out, none moreso than fullback, Cameo Motley, who has now scored 21 tries in four games.
The next game of the day saw the Gladiator D2 side (2nd XV) take on a very accomplished Sacramento Capitols side. The same team they faced in the 2015 NorCal Championship game. The end result was a comprehensive 43-12 win over very good and well coached opposition. Whilst the winning result was not the same as the last time these teams met, the bonus point (scoring four tries or more) win gave the home team five valuable league points to secure themselves on the league standings. A huge effort up front from powerful tighthead prop, Maka Tameilau, laid the platform for success. Flyhalf Calvin Nell was in sublime form and utilized possession well with some deft kicks into space, astute decision making and impressive ball carrying.
The main game saw the Sacramento Blackhawks D1 side put on a brave effort against a young and inexperienced Gladiator 1st XV. With the home team coming home 50 – 7 after leading the game 26 – 0 at halftime. Young hooker Tino Mafi lead from the front with some elusive running and ball carries and in the backs, the experience and precision of flyhalf and captain, Orene Aii helped the players gain ascendancy on a hot spring day.
The last and final game of the day saw the B-sides from the two D1 teams play a 40 minute game against one another. Again the Gladiators overcame a strong effort from the Blackhawks, winning 26 points to 10.