Rugby wins MIT eventBy Mike Murphy
The MIT Rugby Club rebounded from a tough loss to Springfield Rugby Football Club in the league playoffs and won the Fifth MIT Invitational Rugby Tourney which it hosted Saturday.
The win marked the second time that MIT managed to capture its own tournament. MIT defeated Colby College 20-0 in the opening round and gained a small measure of revenge in beating Springfield by a score of 7-0 in the final. Springfield defeated the University of Vermont 22-0 earlier in the Tourney.
MIT played its best game since the season opener against an out-manned Colby side. Leo Casey G and Barry Culpepper G led a strong forward pack which dominated play and gave the backs plenty of time and room to run during the contest.
The Engineers' scoring in the first half was limited to a try by Casey. Mike Schoen '87 did a fine job of blunting Colby's kicking game from the fullback position.
MIT began the second half with the wind at its back and an offensive surge which buried Colby. After pinning Colby on their goal line with the kickoff, the attack led to tries by Rich Selesnick G and Schoen, making the score 16-0 and effectively ending the match.
The final was a rematch of the league semifinals. Springfield opened with an aggressive attack that backed MIT up against its goal line early in the game. The Engineers' outstanding team defense prevented a score and Selesnick was able to kick MIT out of trouble.
Quickly turning to the attack, MIT's forwards began to dominate as they had against Colby. This led to two penalty kick attempts by Selesnick, who made one to put MIT up 3-0.
Casey's blistering run through the entire Springfield defense at the end of the half almost led to a try, but time ran out before MIT could convert. It made little difference as MIT continued its attack with the second-half kickoff.
MIT camped near the Springfield goal, but several attempts to push the ball across were stopped. Finally, the insurance try came on a weakside play off the scrum with Casey passing to John Suber '87 for the score.
(Editor's note: Murphy is president of the MIT Rugby Football Club.)