New York, NY - Dartmouth traveled to New York City on Saturday to take on the Midshipmen of Navy for a much needed preseason tune-up. The Big Green were able to get nine first-year players into the match as they chased a physical and fit Navy outfit to the tune of 5 to 65.
The lone Big Green try came from freshman Dawit Workie '17 halfway through the first half on an impressive line break set up by senior Kevin Clark ’14.
“Navy always presents the DRFC with a stern test and this weekend was no different,” co-captain John Descalzi '13 said. “This was the first step of many in an exciting spring season that will see us compete in California, the Ivy Championship, the Varsity Cup, and the USA Sevens Collegiate Rugby Championships.”
Four forwards and three backs from the fall's starting XV were joined by a collection of 18 reserve-grade and 1st-year players. Many of these players showed well and put themselves in a position to compete for playing time come the Ivy Rugby playoffs and Varsity Cup matches.
"It was a good opportunity to give some younger guys experience against top competition and continue to develop leadership throughout the squad,” noted co-captain Neil Greene ‘14. “Besides a few mistakes that led to points, I was happy with our performance in the 1st half, and our overall improvements from the Boston scrimmage. I was also impressed by Navy's depth."
Dartmouth now enters a two-week hiatus for reading period and exams, before traveling to California for Spring Tour. The next match in the team’s progression will be against the Cal Bears on March 17 at 6:30pm on the Berkeley campus.
“Sincere thanks to Old Blue and Navy for helping this game take place,” said Dartmouth head coach Gavin Hickie, “We are delighted to have been able to play against a strong Navy team before we depart for tour. Our last XVs game was in October and Saturday's game allowed us to see where we are currently and the areas we need to address before the spring season kicks off.”