GLENDALE, Colo. – Glendale is arguably the center of the rugby universe this weekend with the Serevi RugbyTown Sevens Tournament kicking off on Friday. Twenty matches between 17 senior teams in addition to 14 matches in a brand new U18 High School Tournament highlighted Day 1 of the events at SRS.
Army (3-0-0) and Air Force (2-1-0) opened up the first day of action as frontrunners for the Military Championship, with multiple wins to open up play in Pool A. Army looked dominant, particularly in their 52-0 thumping of the Marines, but Air Force strung together steady performances throughout the day.
“I thought our performance was pretty solid. We’re working on cleaning up our unforced errors. We have a lot of room to find our potential and that’s what we’ll be working on Saturday,” Air Force head coach Andy McQuade said. “This is exactly where we wanted to be wrapping up Day 1 and we’re happy to be where we are.”
In Pool B, the unfamiliar and new faces to SRS, the Canadian Upright Rugby Rogues, lead the standings, going an undefeated 2-0-0 in Friday’s action including a tightly contested 28-21 tournament opening win over the hosting Glendale Raptors. The Raptors (1-0-1 on Friday) bounced back with a 25-7 win over the Stars 7s side and remain within striking distance with four points in the table.
In Pool C the Denver 7s looked like the side to beat, opening their tournament with a 32-5 win over the Mexico Serpientes National Team and a more closely contested 21-17 victory over the Northeast Academy. Northeast and traveling 7s side Atlantis enter Saturday tied for second place in Pool C with four points each.
The Serevi Selects side leads Pool D after the first day, with two wins and six points to its name. The Collegiate All-Americans and Texas-based Negro Y Azul enter Day 2 in a battle for second place, both with four points apiece.
In the High School Tournament, Atlantis Rugby’s U-18s side is the frontrunner as the only youth side to go undefeated on Day 1, capping it with a 10-7 win over the Upright Rugby Rogues, one of the other leading youth teams.
The local Raptors U-18 squad faced its fair share of ups and downs, narrowly losing a 26-24 contest against the Rogues to start the tournament, followed by a dominant 34-0 outing against Atavus. The Glendale Academy closed out the tournament with back-to back losses against Atlantis and Utah Lions, however.
Pool Play continues Saturday with early morning rounds followed by the Inaugural SRS U18 High School Tournament Championship (3 p.m.) as well as the Armed Forces Championship (3:56 p.m.). SRS Bowl and Cup Quarterfinals will round out the afternoon’s action on Saturday.
Also highlighting Saturday’s events is the Bruises and Brews Beerfest, which will take place from 12-4 p.m. in Festival Plaza, adjacent to Infinity Park. Twenty breweries will showcase their top brews, along with a few distilleries and a couple terrific hard ciders. Tickets for Glendale’s Bruises and Brews Beerfest are available for $35 online at www.glendalebeerfest.com or at the Infinity Park Stadium.