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1998-1999 Spring Results

  • 1998 Texas Division II - 3rd Place
  • 1998 Western RFU Division II - 5th Place

Fort Worth RFC @ The 1999 Western Championship

Complete Brackets and Scores

Omaha, Nebraska, April 23-25, 1999

Fort Worth's run of three consecutive Western Championships was ended with a disheartening loss to San Antonio RFC on Friday. Fort Worth played hard through the remaining matches of the weekend, winning easily on Saturday and Sunday to take fifth place.

The Woodlands played some splendid rugby all weekend, and were clearly the best team in the tournament. Congratulations Woodlands!

Woodlands keeps the trophy in its rightful state of Texas. On the weekend, the Texas teams finished 6-1 against non-Texas opponents, outscoring the other unions 233-75. The lone Texas loss was by 3 points on a drop-goal in injury time.

Friday: Fort Worth - 18 San Antonio - 22

The game began with a San Antonio line-out near Fort Worth's goal. San Antonio spun the ball to their inside center, who crashed back hard and dove across the line for a quick 5-0 lead within a minute of play. Within 5 minutes a try by their winger made it 10-0.

Fort Worth steadily made a come back, and took the lead 18-17 with five minutes remaining. At 2 minutes from full time, a maul from a line-out was driven over and San Antonio had the lead 22-18.

Fort Worth had one more chance to take the victory, driving a maul to within 1 meter of the winning try. San Antonio held the line in the final seconds and took the match 22-18.

Saturday: Fort Worth - 31 Saint Louis Royals - 15

Each team was nursing some serious hangovers as they stepped on the field for this consolation match. Close through 60 minutes, the score stood at 17-15, but two late tries by Fort Worth put the game out of reach for the Royals.

Sunday: Fort Worth - 46 Sioux Falls Crow - 0

The Crow had a bye on the previous day (NM Highlands is completely inept) and were anxious to play another match. Fort Worth, however, was looking to get the nightmare of a weekend over as soon as possible. The match was played in good spirit, with all 31 participants having a good time. Referee Norbert Mueller was even seen to crack a smile on more than one occasion. :-) The Crow had a female at the #2 spot, and Fort Worth payed the proper respects by pushing over two tries.

The highlight of the match was to be a complete setup of Fort Worth's hooker, Skip Miles. On the first scrum in Crow territory, Fort Worth was going to call the secret play "Noonan". The ball was to be fed directly to the opposing hooker (the female). Skip was never going to live down losing one against the head to a girl. However, after the ball was fed almost directly to the Crow's second row, it was accidently kicked back to Fort Worth and Skip's reputation remained intact.

Another highlight of the match was a banger by 280 lb prop Mike Szymanski. He took the ball and headed straight for the female. While she didn't exactly tackle him, she didn't move out of the way, either. A few tacklers arrived in support and Mike was finally brought down.

Fort Worth RFC @ The 31st Annual Austin Tournament

Austin, Texas, April 10-11, 1999

For the first time in 4 years, Fort Worth RFC travelled to Austin with a full side, and proceeded to march into the final with their new game of deliberate, patient rugby and solid defense.

Match 1: Fort Worth - 18 Fort Hood - 13 (overtime)

Fort Worth seemed in control of this match from the outset, but Fort Hood kept it close and scored the tying try with less than a minute remaining. The overtime was a 7 on 7, sudden death match. Fort Worth received the kickoff and spun the ball wide. Winger Alex Rylance turned the corner and sped up the sideline with one covering defender to beat. Alex popped a beautiful kick over the defender and sped past him to catch it on the second bounce and score the winning try.

Match 2: Fort Worth - 17 Kwaggas - 14

This match promised to be one of the best of the day and it didn't disappoint. Kwaggas is a side of Texas players from South Africa, with solid and experienced players at every position.

Fort Worth and Kwaggas battled evenly from the outset, with Kwaggas maintaining a slight territorial advantage. Numerous scoring opportunities were thwarted by the solid defense of Fort Worth. Midway through the first half Fort Worth's flyhalf, James Swain, slotted a drop goal from 30 meters to give Fort Worth the advantage. Later in the half, Ivan Moorhead dotted down from the base of a driving maul begun from a lineout. The conversion by Rick Dell gave Fort Worth a 10-0 halftime lead.

In the second half Kwaggas jumped on the board with a converted try from a rolling maul begun at a lineout. Fort Worth came back quickly with a try by winger Trey Buck, and Dell's conversion sent the lead to 17-7. With 5 minutes remaining Kwaggas scored another converted try from another mauled lineout to cut the lead to 17-14, which remained to the end.

Match 3: Fort Worth - 20 Austin Huns - 8

Fort Worth played a solid game all around, with only one minor defensive breakdown to spoil the shutout. The Huns hit hard, and rucked hard, but in the end Fort Worth's speed made the difference.

Semi-Final: Fort Worth - 1 San Antonio - 0

San Antonio showed with only 5 players, yielding Fort Worth the forfeit victory.

Premier Final: Fort Worth - 8 Austin RFC - 15

Fort Worth played another deliberate and patient match, in an attempt to neutralize Austin's speed and fitness. The plan worked well at the outset, where neither team gained a solid territorial advantage. Austin jumped on the board with a penalty and an unconverted try by Mark Brewerton, but Fort Worth held their defense in the headwind for the rest of the first half.

With the wind, Fort Worth began tactical kicking, and secured their first points on a penalty by Rick Dell to cut the lead to 5. Austin came back quickly, however, and sent a deep up-and-under kick to a spot 10 meters from the try line. Fort Worth had three players in defense once Austin had taken the ball, but the Austin pack arrived in force to create an overload that was finally touched down by their flanker.

With 5 minutes left, Fort Worth spun the ball wide to Mike Harvey who sprinted around his opposite, cut inside another defender, and crashed over a third to touch down in the corner for Fort Worth's final score. The missed conversion left it at 8-15, with the tournament hosts, Austin RFC the victors.

Fort Worth's A & B sides @ the TRU Championships

Houston, Texas, March 27-28, 1999 <Brackets & Scores>

B Semifinal: Fort Worth B - 14 Houston Athletic 2B - 0

The TRU Championships began with an energetic victory for Fort Worth's B side, which fought for every inch against the very experienced and skilled tournament hosts, Houstin Athletic. The scoring began 20 minutes into the first half with an 80 meter try begun with a solid run by 300 lb inside center Junior Filikitonga. The try was scored and converted by winger Alex Rylance.

In the second half hooker Skip Miles dove over the line from a ruck, and Rylance converted to finish the scoring for Fort Worth. On the day, Fort Worth was solid in the lineouts, defense and scrums.

A Semifinal: Fort Worth A - 26 Woodlands A - 31

Fort Worth entered this game riding a 50 game unbeaten streak in Texas cup competition, and a 7 game winning streak against the Woodlands. In the last 4 years, Fort Worth had met the Woodlands in final after final, and what began as big victories dwindled to narrow ones as our rivals to the south steadily improved. In the previous 2 matches, Fort Worth had escaped with merely one point victories.

With this rich history in mind, and with a profound mutual respect, the teams met in a match that will go down as one of the finest in both clubs' history.

Woodlands began the scoring early, using the wind to their advantage and pinning Fort Worth in their end. Lineouts deep in Fort Worth territory were converted to quick tries, and Fort Worth quickly found themselves down 14-0. Within 20 minutes, however, Woodlands were keenly aware of what Fort Worth brings to every match, dominant scummaging. Fort Worth got on the board with a push over try touched down by Dan Morgan and converted by Rick Dell.

Woodlands was far from finished and continued their strategic kicks and lineouts, and put another try and penalty to assume a halftime lead of 24-7.

In the second half, Fort Worth gained the wind and repeated the strategy of  Woodlands with deep kicks. Steadily the scrummaging began to wear down Woodlands and Fort Worth were awarded a penalty try after a number of collapsed scrums near the goal line.

With 5 minutes remaining, Fort Worth once again found themselves on Woodlands line with a scrum. Down 24-19, Fort Worth were intent upon pushing over for the winning try. In the next three minutes, the two teams battled in an epic force of wills as the front rows met and collapsed time after time. After what seemed to be at least a dozen scrum downs, the referee once again found Woodlands as the culprits and awarded the apparent winning penalty try to Fort Worth.

With a 26-24 lead and two minutes remaining, Fort Worth cautioned themselves to play defense, play safe, and tackle, tackle, tackle. Woodlands, however, were utterly determined to finally defeat the only team in Texas they hadn't beat in the last 4 years, and hadn't given up by a longshot.

Woodlands fly-half quickly kicked deep and away from his pack, and his backs chased the kick inside Fort Worth's 22. Fort Worth fielded the ball and kicked, but the ball failed to find touch and Woodlands attacked from their 10. Brought down at Fort Worth's 10, the ball was spun weak and finally ended up in their outside center's hands who quickly cut inside Fort Worth's two covering defenders and sprinted for the winning score at full time.

B Final: Fort Worth B - 8 Woodlands B - 5

Fort Worth B - 1999 Texas Rugby Union IIB Champions

Ben Ferreira scored a try and a penalty to secure Fort Worth's first B side Texas Championship since 1995. Woodlands discovered what Fort Worth has known for three years ... it's virtually impossible to win both the A and B side TRU Championships.

The referee of the match was Graeme Bullen who summed up the match perfectly on the Society of Texas Rugby Referees web page at

"What a game. This is why you referee. I haven`t had as much fun doing a game in a long time. You could sense the players intensity long before kick off. Both teams have mutual respect and admiration for each other and that was apparent at the pre-game checks.

The field was muddy and heavy conditions prevailed. I informed the front rows that slipping was not an excuse for collapsing the scrums and I am pleased to say that the scrums did not collapse the whole game. From the kick off it was an all-out game with both teams tackling like demons. The handing was surprisingly good with a muddy, often wet ball...

The game flowed nicely. Ft Worth held a huge territorial advantage and constantly put pressure on Woodlands. Both tries were from great rugby, controlling the ball, backs and forwards combining well, etc. In the second half with the score 5-5, Ft Worth mounted a sustained attack, pinning Woodlands in their own half. In the middle of the field, just short of Woodland 22 a ruck formed with Ft Worth winning the ball. A black player (Woodlands) was bound in the ruck and could see the ball emerging on White`s side. I noticed that he was leaning over in an attempt to get at the ball. I yelled at him twice "Stay on your feet Black", he slowly went over and lost his balace and fell to the ground effectively blocking the ball. That pentalty was converted and Ft Worth won the game 8-5.

It was an exciting finish with both teams having good runs and opportunities. The sidelines were cheering and the players were giving their all. When the final whistle blew, you could see jubliation and disappointment all at once. I made a point of thanking the players first before they thanked me as they had put in a mountaneous effort, played fairly and cleanly, and deserved to be thanked. I couldn`t help notice some Woodlands players with teary eyes and it reminded me that this game means something to the players and we should never forget that." - Graeme Bullen

A Consolation: Fort Worth A - 41 Dallas Harlequins 2A - 5

Fort Worth's head coach, Mike Kwedar, summed up the weekend perfectly after this match:

"The bad news is that our Texas Cup unbeaten streak stopped at 50. The good news is that our winning streak now stands at one."

From the outset, this was Fort Worth's game. Dominance in the scrums yielded 4 push overs (2 against the head), and a 5th from a stolen ball in a scrum. Solid mauling after a line-out yielded another score, and a beautiful play from a line-out yielded the 7th try.

The Quins fought to the end and their scrum-half scored near full time to end the shutout. With the victory Fort Worth earns a spot in the Western RFU Championship as the 3rd seed from Texas.

Preview: For the 4th consecutive year, Fort Worth's A side has qualified for the TRU Championship tournament.  The A side brings their 9-0-1 record and their formidable 50 game unbeaten streak (in TRU competition). Waiting in Houston will be the best 4 sides ever to play for a Texas Division 2 Championship, including the Woodlands, San Antonio, and either the Dallas Harlequins or Houston Athletic vying to knock off the defending champions in Fort Worth.

For the 5th consecutive year. Fort Worth's B side enters as the favorite to claim the Texas 2B title. What's most interesting is that three time defending champion Denton has not qualified, leaving three time runners-up Fort Worth as the top contender. Fort Worth has won the 2B title twice in its history, most recently in 1995.

Fort Worth vs. Dallas Blues, Gateway Park, Saturday, March 13, 1999

Fort Worth A - 22 Dallas Blues A - 10

The Blues played a very scrappy game that at times frustrated Fort Worth's offense. The conditions were horrid as the wet field and blistering cold helped keep it close.

Fort Worth B - 15 Dallas Blues B - 0

Another 40 minute match for Fort Worth's seconds. Unfortunately common in the second division these days.

Preview: The Blues have been playing solid rugby all year, including some close matches with the Dallas Harlequins.  This is the last cup match for both sides, and will not affect the TRU standings in any way. However, the Blues want to end on a high note and Fort Worth wants to play well heading into the TRU Championship. These factors alone make this an exciting match. This will be the last time to see Fort Worth in action at home, except maybe in the National Quarterfinals in May.

The A side match will kick off at 2:00 PM at Fort Worth's Gateway Park. The B side match will follow at 3:30 PM. Following the match is a party for all players and fans at The Springbok Pub at 5:30 PM.

Fort Worth vs. Denton, Gateway Park, Saturday, February 27, 1999

Fort Worth A - 64 Denton A - 0

Denton showed with a young side and around 20 players. The match was never in doubt, but Denton was able to put together a few solid attempts at scores, and even pushed into the try zone without being able to touch down. Fort Worth had a number of beautiful long tries, including one that went 105 meters, and touched at least 10 sets of hands on the way.

Fort Worth B - 36 Denton B - 0

A 40 minute match where Denton was forced to play with the same players.   Fort Worth's B side put together some solid tries, and played well all around.

Preview: Denton is in a rebuilding process, and has difficulty fielding 2 sides. The rivalry continues regardless of the successes or failures of each club, hence this match promises to be hard fought and entertaining.

The A side match will kick off at 2:00 PM at Fort Worth's Gateway Park. The B side match will follow at 3:30 PM. Following the match is a party for all players and fans at The Springbok Pub at 5:30 PM.

Fort Worth vs. Dallas Our Gang, Gateway Park, Saturday, February 20, 1999

Fort Worth A - 52 Dallas Our Gang A - 22

Fort Worth - 8 tries, 6 conversions, Our Gang -3 tries, 2 conversions, 1 penalty. Fort Worth played their best game of the year, running and gunning, and mounting scoring attacks from all over the pitch. Dallas Our Gang put up impressive attacks of their own, scoring 10 points and 12 points in successive halves, but were unable to match Fort Worth's consistent pressure.

Fort Worth B - 36 Dallas Our Gang B - 10

A short match with all the exciting B-side Fort Worth action, including a 60 meter try from 300+ lb. inside center Junior Filikitonga, shifty runs from outside center David Moala, and the usual feisty attacks from fly-half Ben Ferreirra. Hooker Skipper Miles gets on the board for the year with a try.

Preview: Our Gang has gotten their act together, and put up some big numbers in recent victories. The fall match between these teams was as scrappy and ugly as rugby can be, and hopefully this match can change that.

The A side match will kick off at 2:00 PM at Fort Worth's Gateway Park. The B side match will follow at 3:30 PM. Following the match is a party for all players and fans at The Springbok Pub at 5:30 PM.

Fort Worth vs. Arlington Mavericks, Gateway Park, Saturday, February 13, 1999

Fort Worth A - 49 Arlington Mavericks A - 5

Fort Worth - 9 tries, 2 conversions, Arlington -1 try. Arlington played a scrappy game, and out-rucked Fort Worth on a number of occasions. However, Fort Worth's superior speed, size, and experience in key positions kept them pinned in their own end for most of the game.

Fort Worth B - 28 Arlington Mavericks B - 0

This match was called at halftime due to incessant whining and talking to the ref. The referee already had the unenviable task of refereeing two matches, and 120 minutes of bitching was enough. Arlington wanted to finish the game without a ref, but Fort Worth decided not to play without a society ref. In the editor's honest opinion, I felt the STRR official had a good day, refereeing two decidedly different styles. One hates to see a rugby official get frustrated enough to call a match early, but if clubs do not give referees the proper respect, they are left without many choices. Although Fort Worth was not the culprit in this case, every team can do a better job at reinforcing respect for referees to their members.

Galveston Mardi Gras, Galveston Island, February 6-7, 1999

Fort Worth won the consolation match against the Woodlands, after losing in the semifinal match to the eventual champions, the Metro Barbarians.

Complete summary of the weekend...

Fort Worth vs. Dallas Harlequins - II, Gateway Park, Saturday, January 30, 1999

Fort Worth A - 10 Dallas Harlequins IIA - 10

The importance of this match for both clubs could not be overstated, as the winner could have taken a commanding lead in the race for the automatic seed in the TRU championship tournament. With the resulting tie, Fort Worth maintains their position atop the TRU-North, with a 5-0-1 record, while the Quins are certain to play a home qualifying match later this Spring to earn their spot.

The Quins began the match with a lot of energy and emotion, and steadily worked their way into Fort Worth territory. Their first score came within the first five minutes, as their center dotted down under the posts after a few phases in the forwards. The conversion made it 7-0. Midway through the half a penalty kick from 30M gave them the 10-0 advantage.

Fort Worth soon began countering the Quins with their steady forward game. Their first score came from fly half Rick Dell, who took the pass from the base of an attacking scrum and dove at the corner to cut the Quins lead to 10-5.

In the second half, Fort Worth finally began to secure possesion in the line-outs, and it would make the difference in the tying score. >From 10 meters, Fort Worth won the line-out throw to the first jumper and drove a maul about five meters. Tonga Makawe took a banger at ten meters out, and plowed through the defense to touch down in the corner. The missed conversion left the score at 10-10. This half saw both teams miss obvious scoring opportunities which would have meant the game, as Fort Worth knocked on two sure push-over tries, and the Quins missed a makeable penalty kick, and then mis-handled a pass at full time that would have netted them the victory.

For Fort Worth, Dan Morgan played a stellar defensive game, and earned Man-of-the-Match honors.

Fort Worth B - 8 Dallas Harlequins IIB - 0

Fort Worth scored a quick 3 in the first five minutes, and followed it with a try by Buddy Taylor midway through the first half. The second half required a solid defensive game by Fort Worth, as both sides threatened to score from anywhere.  On the day, however, Fort Worth played the better game and earned the victory. Steve Utter earned Man-of-the-match honors with his solid defense at fullback.

Preview:  This will be a key match for Fort Worth, and a chance to take a commanding lead for the one automatic seed in the TRU tournament.  The Quins only loss was to Fort Worth in a closer-than-appears 32-17 match in the Fall.

The A side match will kick off at 2:00 PM at Fort Worth's Gateway Park. The B side match will follow at 3:30 PM. Following the match is a party for all players and fans at The Springbok Pub at 5:30 PM.

Fort Worth vs. Austin RFC, Gateway Park, Saturday, January 16, 1999

Fort Worth A - 10 Austin A - 53

Austin RFC travelled to Fort Worth and left with a solid victory.   The match was a close 10-20 affair until midway through the second half when Austin's superior fitness began to show. Quickly the match turned into a route as Austin rolled to try after try in the unusually warm weather.

Fort Worth B - 17 Austin B - 17

Fort Worth led this match 17-10 at halftime, when Austin gained the wind and slope advantage. Solid defense kept Austin at bay until full time when their talented inside center set up the tying try.

Preview:  This will be a difficult match for Fort Worth, after losing to Austin 44-7 in the Fall.  Austin has been a well-run and hard-playing side for years, while Fort Worth's prowess has only been earned in the last few.  The renewing of the two game series between these clubs is a very exciting addition to Fort Worth's schedule.



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