The St. Paul Jazz Pigs D2 and D4 squads kicked off their season Saturday, August 27, 2016 hosting the Eastside Banshees at the Jazz Pigs’ beautiful pitch in Maplewood. The grass had been recently cut and the lines freshly painted. There had been a slight amount of rain; just enough to make the ground slightly softer when landing on it and the ball just more difficult to catch. The sun came peaking out behind the clouds making the air temperature in the mid 70s. A perfect day to play rugby.
The Jazz Pigs started the first match against the Banshees D2 squad. The Piggies sent a message to the Banshees by retrieving their own kick on kick-off. From there the Pigs marched down the field, smashing the Banshees in the mouth, making them regret not catching the ball. As the Pigs marched closer to the Banshees try zone, the Banshees became flustered and committed a penalty within their own 10 meters. The Pigs took advantage of this mistake with a quick tap and smashed the ball into the try zone to take an early lead, 5-0.
Unfortunately, this lead did not last long as the Pigs committed penalty and the Banshees took advantage. They kicked for touch, caught the ball on their own line-out, and then marched the ball into the try zone with a maul to even the score 5-5.
For the rest of the half, the scoring was one-sided. The Banshees capitalized on Jazz Pigs mistakes; whereas, the Pigs were unable to capitalize on the Banshees mistakes. The score at half was 5-22; Banshees lead.
This did not discourage the Pigs as they came out from half scoring a try and conversion to bring the score to 12-22. The second half was a hotly contested half with the Banshees scoring an additional try; however, they did so through undisciplined play. They received multiple yellow cards for a dump tackle, repeated high tackles, and repeated off-sides. As time ran out, the Banshees were able to score one more try to take the final score to 12-33.
The D4 match did not goes as well for the Bombers. The Banshees came roaring out and took a 33-7 lead into half-time; however, the Bombers made multiple adjustments to make the second half more competitive. Ultimately, the Banshees took the match with a final score of 45-7. While the Banshees won the match, the Bombers were able to get many young players into the match to gain more experience. Furthermore, there were some Pig who played 80 minutes in the D2 match and jumped in the D4 match to help out.
The Jazz Pigs and Bombers may have dropped two matches against the Eastside Banshees on Saturday, but they did not lose the St. Paul spirit. They fought hard, delivered bone crushing hits, and punished the Banshees for every meter earned. And as always, the Jazz Pigs and Bombers won the social.
The Jazz Pigs and Bombers will have two weeks to make adjustments before their next matches on Saturday, September 10th against Metropolis’ D2 and D4 squads at the All-MN Rugby Tournament.
Once a Jazz Pig, Always a Jazz Pig. Oink, Oink, Oink!!!