This past weekend the Jazz Pigs traveled down to the land of Lincoln to take on The Westside Condors. In the Pigs’ first D2 win in a long time, they dominated in just about every facet of the match and routed their opponents 32-0. Might we also add that the Pigs also dominated the social aspect of the trip as well. The Bombers played Metropolis’s D3 side and while they fought hard, fell 13-31.
Saturday, November 5th the Pigs entered the playoffs for the 7th consecutive year, the longest streak amongst all Minnesota Men’s Clubs. To open the playoffs they would be taking on the Green Bay Celtics for the 4th time over the past six seasons. The Celtics have had the Pigs number in beating them on the previous three meetings, however this year the Pigs felt their hard work throughout the Summer and Fall would push them ahead.
The game time temperature was an unseasonably 56 degrees, with a very strong wind heading from goal post to goal post. This wind would be an obvious factor in the game. The fans were out in droves to see this powerhouse matchup. Green Bay won the toss the elected to take the wind in the second half with the Pigs taking the kickoff in the first half.
The Pigs opened with a magnificant kickoff from Padre that Pigs jumped up and took away from Green Bay at the start. This help dictate the begining of the match. At the 15th minute, the ball found Rubber’s hands, taking a hit he off loaded to Goose, who in turn found Zeth storming down the sideline and into the try zone for the first score. The wind making kicking difficult, didn’t allow Padre to make the conversion. Score 5-0.
At the 18th minute, the Pigs had a penalty at the 35 meter line. With the strong wind Padre felt as though this was a kick he could make, however the ball sailed slightly to the left post. Score remained 5-0. At the 25th minute of play, the Celtics found the corner of the try zone, missing the conversion brough the score to 5-5.
The Pigs continued to push against the Green Bay defense. The had pushed Green Bay deep into their own end. Green Bay was awarded a 5 meter scrum, not much of an award when you have Bauer breathing down your neck. Bauer burst through the scrum and stole the ball scoring under the posts, with the conversion we came to half time with a 12-5 Pigs lead.
The wind would become a huge issue in the second half. It was blowing at a steady 20 mph, which would push the Celtics deep into the Pigs end to start the second half. Solid defense keep the Celtics out of the try zone and a misake by Green Bay gave the Pigs the ball back. Little by little the Pigs would slowly begin pushing the ball out of their end. After driving 60 meters, Green Bay would utilize the wind and boom the ball back deep inside the Pigs 22. Some nifty runs by the Pigs back line continued to relieve the pressure, however the wind allowed Green Bay to push the ball again back inside the Pigs 22.
The Pigs dominated the second half of play both offensively and defensively, but the score remained the same at the final whistle, 12-5.
A great team win for the Pigs… and some needed rest for a team until playoffs resume in April
Tries: Seth Spreadbury, Zac Bauer
Conversions: Padre (1 for 2)
Penalties: Padre (1 for 3)
Big Hitter: Aaron Johnson
Man of the Match: Dietrich Peterson
On a gorgeous day for rugby the Pigs traveled to historic Faribault to play the final league game and their final tune-up before the 2011 playoffs. The league game would be against the Faribault Box Spring and Carleton College would be providing a second game.
The Pigs went on to a lopsided victory with Faribault’s only tri being scored by Twinkie (a Pigs prop). First year Piggie, Curtis had a breakout day scoring 5 tries and being involved in numerous other scoring plays setting up other scores. The victory was big, however the Pigs felt unsatisfied as they knew that the lack of intensity, emotion, and fire would not fly in playoffs.
The Pigs had a following game against Carleton. The game was a fun, competitive, close game. The Pigs/Bombers provided great intensity and dominant ball control leading them to a victory.
-Man of the Match: Will “Boxcar” Gilman
-Big Hitter: Paul ‘Potato Sally’ Fannin
-Bombers Man of the Match: Joe ‘Rubber’ Lang
The Pigs and Bottomfeeders both came into the match with a 3-0 record. Both teams being playoff bound with the winner getting home field throughout the first two rounds of the playoffs. This would be the biggest match between these two teams to date. The Pigs having been beaten by the Feeders in the Spring were ready for revenge.
The game started with the Bottomfeeders quickly pushing the ball into the Pigs end. The Pigs were not where they wanted to be, having to play defensively right from the kickoff. However the Pigs defense held strong and didn’t allow the Feeders into the try zone.
The Pigs quickly pushed back in the 10th minute. Rubber was running with the ball and was quickly swarmed by the Feeder’s backline. Having played many years together, Dietrich saw the gleam in Rubber’s eye and knew what was coming next. Rubber place a perfect pop kick over the back line, that Dietrich pursued. The ball was caught by the Feeders fullback, who saw Dietrich in pursuit. Instead of face the pressure of Dietrich the fullback attempted to kick the ball out of the back of the try zone. The ball didn’t make it, but Dietrich did, putting the first points on the board.
Padre missed the conversion, but made it up on a penalty kick soon after. The score now read 8-0. The next try was a bute, as Cros took the ball straight through 5 defenders and over the try line, with the conversion the score now was 15-0 going into half time. The Feeders were obviously winded, with Pigs ready for more.
The second half opened with a new Circus play the Pigs back line had been working on for the past few weeks. Padre flipped the ball to Dietz, who scooped it up off the turf and switched it to Lauren who in turn switched it over to Zeth. Zeth had no intensions on passing any further. Leaving a pile of carnage behind, Zeth took the ball in to bring the score to 20-0.
The backline was now on a roll. The next try was beautifully run as the backline ran the ball through the defense with Aaron flipping the ball to Dietrich just before being tackled. Dietrich was able to run just outside the reach of the Feeders backline and scored between the uprights. The next try found Dietz on a breakaway with one man to beat. He nearly broke free, but was grabbed at the last second. As he was getting taken to the deck, he gracefully popped the ball up to Dietrich who was again off to the races. With the conversions from Padre the final score read 34-0. With one match remaining the Pigs are in a great position to go undefeated in league play.
The Bombers took the field for the next match. Great play by the bombers young and old. It’s been a long time since any of us have seen so many great rugby players wearing red and black on the field.
Tries: Martin (1), Spreadbury (1), Dietrich (3)
Conversions: Boardman (3 for 5)
Penalties: Boardman (1 for 1)
Pigs Man of the Match: Seth Spreadbury
Bombers Man of the Match: Greg Lehmicke
Big Hitter: Aaron DM Princess
Hot off their win versus the Banshees, the Pigs headed down to Rochester to take on the Rouges. The weather was unseasonably warm, with temeratures nearing 85 degrees. A great day for rugby. The Pigs continuing to grow in numbers, showed up with 30 men ready to play some ball.
The match started with a quick try from Aaron and a penalty kick from Padre, giving the Pigs an early 1o-0 lead. Rochester stormed back and closed the gap to 10-7. With a lapse in defence the Rouges scored again to give them the lead 10-12. Determined not to be down at half Rubber took the ball across the try line to take the lead back 17-12. The Pigs had the first half lead, but were not happy with their play.
The second half the Pigs fitness took over. The Rouges were obviously winded, while the Pigs continued to push into their end. A second try by Rubber, a try by Zeth, and a penalty kick by Padre gave the Pigs a 34-20 win on the day.
The Bombers followed the Pigs with a win against Rochester B. Good play by everyone on the day.
Tries: Aaron, Seth Spreadberry, Joe Lang (2)
Penalties: Zac Boardman (2 for 2)
Conversions: Zac Boardman (4 for 4)
Man of the Match Pigs: Zac Boardman
Big Hitter Pigs: LauKahonen
Man of the Match Bombers: Tony
This Saturday was a beautiful day for rugby. Additionally, it was our fan appreciation day, so there were tons of fans out to see a great match between the Saint Paul Pigs and the Eastside Banshees. The game opened up with the Pigs running hard on the Banshees side of the pitch. A penalty kick in the opening minutes by Padre put the Pigs on the board first, with a score of 3-0.
The Pigs and Banshees traded tries with new Pig Lauren slashing through the defence to bring the score to 10-5. The Pigs kept control with Seth scoring a try to put the Pigs up 15-5. A penalty before half, put the score at 15-8.
The second half the Pigs fitness took over and they controlled the ball on the Banshees end of most the rest of the game. Tries were exchanged i the second half. Rubber took one over and the score now read 22-15. Rubber then took the game into his own hands with some fancy foot work down the sideline. He put a beautiful up and under kick over the defensively line and had the ball perfectly bounce into his hands as he lunged for the try zone. Put another penalty kick over by Padre and the final score was 30-15.
The Bombers took the field next and put on a very nice match against the new North Metro Wolves. Great opportunity for the younger Pigs to get some playing time. This writer only saw 3 players over the age of 30 on the pitch for the Bombers. The Pigs have some young blood coming into the organization which is great to see.
Thanks to everyone who helped put together a very successful match and Fan Appreciation Day.
Saturday, September 17th
St. Paul vs. Minneapolis Mayhem
The day was cool and slightly overcast. A great day to open up league play. Although the score didn’t necessarily indicate it, the Mayhem’s skills have improved over the last few years and a good match was enjoyed by each team. New Pig Aaron ran very hard at Center and led the team with five tries on the day earning Man of the Match. Another new Pig, Dave, showed how tough he was and won big hitter. 78-0 in favor of the Pigs.
The second match of the day was Pigs versus Lakehead. The teams were very evenly matched. The first half was back and forth with neither team able to get points on the board. With seconds to play in the first half, Lakehead found a hole and found the try zone. Unable to convert, they led the match 5-0.
The second half opened with more of the same. The Pigs were in position on a couple of penalties to convert for points, but the windy conditions made finding the posts difficult. Finally a good opporunity arose directly in front of the posts and the Pigs closed the gap 5-3. The Pigs continued to push, however like the first half Lakehead found a couple of gaps in the defense and was able to push through 2 more tries. With 12 minutse to play Lakehead led 19-3.
The Pigs determined to keep pushing, lead a surge in the closing minutes. The Pigs first try of the day was on a sensational run by Soft Porn. He zig-zagged his was through the defense to close the gap 19-10. The Pigs could now feel as though a comeback was possible. With 5 minutes to play, the ball came out of the scrum and down the backline. Padre looking like he was a spry 29 year old tossed the ball out to SoftPorn, who sucked in the defense, then made a magnificent pass to Dietrich. Dietrich sensing Padre looping along the line flipped the ball to the end. Padre realizing the defense was up tight, put down a perfect grubber that he was able to chase down and score the try. With the score now reading 14-19, it was close, but time was not on the Pigs side.
The Pigs again took control of the ball. Pushing hard into the Lakehead side of the field, backs and pack alike took turns taking the ball closer to the try line. With less than a minute to play, young Greg Lehmicke took the ball straight into 5 Lakehead forwards and found a seam to push the ball into the try zone. The Pigs came out victorious 20-19.
Having used all his old man strength in the game, Padre was unable to make it to the social to accept man of the match, but Ben Mattox stepped up to accept the award. Great work on the day to everyone!
Saturday, May 14th the Pigs took of the University of Minnesota. It was a rather chilly 45 degrees at game time with a slight rain coming down. Not ideal conditions, especially for this time of year. The Pigs this Spring have come close in a number of matches, this match was one they were ready to win and felt the needed to win.
The team dominated play from the start. The Pigs defense had finally come together and they continually pushed the young U of MN squad back. The U had a few very nice plays, but for the most part the Pigs were able to shut them down. At the whistle the final score was St. Paul 30, U of MN 19. Great work to everyone who played in the match and special thanks to our fans and the Bombers who weren’t able to get in this match.
Scoring: Valek, Peterson, Bauer, Grand Pre
Conversions: Michno: 2 for 4
Penalty Kicks: Michno: 2 for 2
Big Hitter: Zac Bayer
Man of the Match: Stephan Grand Pre
The Pigs traveled to Winona over the weekend for a match versus the college side. The team traveled a little lighter than they would have liked, but were ready for a good match.
The Winona team was a strong club and matched up with the Pigs quite well across the board. The Pigs opened slow and put a strong push on at the end of the match, but came up on the losing side with a score of 22-32. The Bombers followed the Pigs with a nice win from the young fellas.
Pigs Big Hitter – Zac Bauer
Pigs Man of the Match – Grant Dietrich
Bombers Best Forward – Dan
Bombers Best Back – JJ
It was the first game of the Spring. There were a few snow patches still cluttered on the field, but for the most part, the grass was ready for some ball. The Pigs took the field for the first time under new Head Coach Pietila. Excitement grew as they drew one of their largest draw of fans in quite some time.
The game was back to back through the first half. The Sioux Falls team having won their first birth in the West Championships was showing they belonged at a higher level of competition. The Pigs battled back throughout the day. Sioux Falls found the tri zone first with a push from their pack over the middle. They took a second score to go into the half with a 12-0 lead.
The Pigs were confident in their skills with their off season work showing in their level of fitness. The controlled the second half. The mud slowed play considerably not allowing the Pigs backs to show some of their speed. Thus the pack had to carry a heavier load. The Pigs first score came from a break through by Ben Mattox. He gave an off load to Ben Hanson, who then passed it over to new Pig Greg Parsons.
The Pigs needed a few more minutes to continue their push, but time expired as they were ready to take the lead. Final score 12-7.
Thanks to Macalaster Rugby for bringing a team out to play the Bombers. The muddy conditions keep this score low, but it was a great learning experience for the younger Pigs.
Tries: Greg Parsons (1)
Conversions: Paul Staats (1-1)
Penalties: Paul Staats (0-1)
Pigs Man of the Match: Ben Mattox
Pigs Big Hitter: Erik Gustaf
Bombers Best Back: Zac Chamberlin
Bombers Best Pack: Tyler Moe-Slepica