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The Seattle Saracens defeated Central Washington 45-14 in a friendly Saturday. After playing an NCRC game on the same day against the University of Washington, the Wildcats struggled to keep pace with an incredibly talented Saracens side.
Seattle did all the scoring the first half, netting a 19-0 cushion at the break. The Saracens punished Central Washington for playing too much rugby inside its own half. Seattle dominated possession for the first 30 minutes and was able to put up three tries.
The start of the second half went the way of the Wildcats, with Central Washington scoring two converted tries under the posts to cut the lead to 19-14.
“The next 20 minutes after the half was really ours,” said CWU coach Tony Pacheco. ”We had the lion share of the possession, territory and we scored two tries.”
The last 20 minutes, Seattle’s size and speed proved too much for the Wildcats. CWU began falling off of tackles and the Saracens ran in a number of tries for a 45-14 victory. The Wildcats simply could not maintain a high level of rugby for the final stages of the game.
“They just kept coming at us and we couldn’t stick to that level for the full 80 at this point,” Pacheco commented.
Despite the loss, Pacheco was very pleased with some aspects of his squad’s performance. Central Washington showed some very good defensive structure and maintained possession for a large stint in the middle of the game.
“I thought we played several phases of rugby against a high quality opponent for long periods of time and held possession for quite a while at times,” said Pacheco.
Nevertheless, the Wildcats will look to improve on their tackling next week as they head for a rematch with the Saracens. Seattle has strong runners, including several guys with test match experience, and at times, CWU struggled to bring down the likes of Miles Craigwell and Nick Hawkins.
“We were in the right place. We just have to finish those opportunities,” Pacheco said of his squads tackling.
Ultimately a home and home with the Saracens will bode well for a Central Washington team hoping to make noise in the Varsity Cup. Conference play has done very little to challenge the Wildcats and a series against one of the best club teams in the country will certainly help.
“It is great opportunity for us to play against players that are really on another level,” Pacheco added. “As a club goes, their as organized and put together as any in the country.”