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The unofficial opening of the spring rugby season commenced this weekend at the Dennis Storer Classic in Los Angeles, Calif. Named in honor of the U.S. National team and UCLA coach, the tournament gathered a conglomerate of squads in the University of California system to test their mettle against each other. Cal, UCLA, UC Davis, UC Santa Cruz, and UC San Diego played a total of eight games to kick off 2018.

#1 ranked Cal showed it’s might completing a four-game sweep of the tournament by a combined score of 240-7. Three of the four games were shutouts with only UC San Diego scoring a single try.

Head coach Jack Clark’s main takeaway was playing over 40 guys this weekend. “We were able to get a look at the whole of the roster. My biggest takeaway was that everyone got a chance to play and show what they got. We had a handful of impressive performances, but we are not going to make much out of an early season tournament like that.”

On the competition at the Classic, Clark was encouraged by the play of UCLA and UC Davis. “[They] were both good rugby teams. Those two games probably had the most developmental value for us. Those teams have good players on them and they are hard to break down. In particular, UCLA’s Scott Stewart is a really good coach.”

Cal has been in camp since January 3rd and treated the tournament as an extension of the ramp up to the season. “We were very basic this weekend and we are going to have to be a more sophisticated team as time wears on. We considered this weekend as part of that camp we were just in. We rolled out of camp and had some live competition. It was a good way to open the season.”

“What is important is we continue to flesh out our options as a team,” Clark added. “We played pretty vanilla rugby and didn’t really have much in. We’ll have to continue to add to our technical approach. We will have to expand what we are doing on the field in the way of our options at the line of touch, scrum moves, backline moves, and how we boxcar things together. All of that needs to be increasingly complicated, more sophisticated as the season wears on.”

With multiple players graduated from last season’s squad, Clark is still in the process of filling out his starting 23. “Obviously, some of the guys who graduated were exceptional players and were exceptional leaders as well. I’m not sure that I have a read on who is going to be able to fill those voids. It may not be even fair to suggest that they are going to be filled."

“It might mean that some of the returning players are going to have to naturally raise their own game and maybe we will be good and experienced at different positions. You’re not going to replace Russell Webb or Anthony Salaber. I don’t think that’s a fair call on somebody. Those are really hard players to replace.”

The tournament was a mixed bag for the remainder of the teams. UC Davis and UCLA both lost to Cal and UC Davis won the head to head match, 17-15. On Sunday, the Aggies, unfortunately, fell to UC Santa Cruz, 19-5, to finish their weekend.

HOMESCOREAWAYSCORECONFERENCE
Michigan15Minnesota22D1A - Big Ten
Ohio State31Purdue24D1A - Big Ten
Stony Brook5Fordham31D1A - Liberty
Colgate14Binghamton32D1A - Liberty
American International College71Rutgers0D1A - Liberty
Brockport17Albany48D1A - Liberty
Oswego State5Syracuse43D1A - Liberty
Rhode Island0Northeastern69D1A - Liberty
Tufts0UConn30D1A - Liberty
UMass49Fairfield14D1A - Liberty
Delaware15West Chester24D1A - Non-Conference
Notre Dame7Davenport48D1A - Non-Conference
KutztownCancelledVirginia TechCancelledD1A - Non-Conference
Western Michigan12Indiana35D1A - Non-Conference
Iona7Navy25D1A - Non-Conference
Arkansas State63Mississippi State0D1A - Non-Conference
Colorado College17Air Force21D1A - Non-Conference
Saint Bonaventure10Army28D1A - Rugby East
Buffalo3Army86D1A - Rugby East
Penn State29Notre Dame College14D1A - Rugby East
New Mexico26Colorado49D1A -Rocky Mountain
Towson39Georgetown14D1AA - Chesapeake
Mary WashingtonPostponedJames MadisonPostponedD1AA - Chesapeake
Salisbury17Maryland12D1AA - Chesapeake
Indiana (PA)33Pittsburgh26D1AA - Mid-Atlantic
St. Joseph's25Rowan19D1AA - Mid-Atlantic
West Virginia11Temple32D1AA - Mid-Atlantic
Cincinnatti10Kentucky50D1AA - Non-Conference
Dartmouth45New England College12D1AA - Non-Conference
Kennesaw StateCancelledAlabamaCancelledD1AA - SCRC
Tennessee68Middle Tennessee State0D1AA - SCRC
NYAC26Life31Men's DI Club - Atlantic North/ARP
Old Blue52Mystic River14Men's DI Club - Atlantic North/ARP
Schuylkill River Exiles36Baltimore-Chesapeake22Men's DI Club - Mid-Atlantic
Rocky Gorge Rugby38Pittsburgh Harlequins14Men's DI Club - Mid-Atlantic
Northern Virginia RugbyPostponedNorfolk BluesPostponedMen's DI Club - Mid-Atlantic
Detroit Tradesmen45Chicago Griffins29Men's DI Club - Midwest
Chicago Lions75Columbus Rugby21Men's DI Club - Midwest
St. Louis Bombers0Metropolis Rugby59Men's DI Club - Midwest
Milwaukee Barbarians14Palmer College Dragons48Men's DI Club - Midwest
Ontario Arrows40Glendale Raptors18MLR - Exhibition
Albany Sirens5Philadelphia Rugby31Women's DI Club - Eastern
D.C. Furies12Atlanta Harlequins51Women's Premier League
Oregon Sports Union26San Diego Surfers29Women's Premier League
Chicago North Shore0Glendale Merlins45Women's Premier League
New York Rugby30Beantown Rugby33Women's Premier League