Another week, another BUCS winning percentage above 50%! This Wednesday saw temperatures as high as 17 degrees, making outdoor matches extremely hot to play in. Our home success rate in particular was excellent this week with 9 wins, 1 draw and only 3 losses.
Check out this week's highlights below.
WEEK 17 HIGHLIGHTS:
Men’s Rugby 2nd hosted Kings College London 3rd on Wednesday. Continuing on from last week’s immense victory against City University, Essex were ready and waiting upon their arrival. Wivenhoe was a sunny 17C with the grounds looking impeccable as always, for what was the last home game for many final year students; an emotional affair by all accounts. 2pm saw the ball fly high from the kick off and Essex scoring in no less than 8 minutes after one too many penalties being given away. The Blades forwards were aggressive in their attack and with all too much flair paved the way for the backs to waltz in try after try after try. Essex lineout’s were top notch, scrums were dominated, and the defence was perfection - not a missed tackle in sight. Special mention must go to final year Rory Sinnott (12) who wouldn’t look out of place playing for UEFC with his superb kick chases, with one resulting in a superb try. Final years Giovanni De Bacci (8) and Charles Campbell (C,10) both had immense games breaking Kings’ defensive line countless times. This paved the way to a huge 71-0 victory for Essex. Player of the Match went to Scott Arnold at fullback, who scored 2 and set up countless tries throughout his 80 minutes on the pitch. Kings were true sportsman and played right up until VC Ed Miles slotted the final conversion of the match. An excellent end note for many final years who have enjoyed many a Wednesday on the hallowed turf of Wivenhoe park which will be missed by so very many.
Rory Sinnott rides a tackle during our Men's Rugby 2nd's 71-0 victory over Kings College 3rd on Wednesday.
Men’s Hockey 1st fielded a full-strength side against their opponents, Surrey 2nd, in the semi final of the Cup who were sure to be the strongest opponents of the year to date. A few early chances were given to Essex with some quick, early passing giving multiple options to Essex but a defiant Surrey goalkeeper let nothing past him. This was until a silky run down the baseline from the Captain Calum led to him rolling the ball past the goalkeeper at his inside post to make it 1-0! The first half continued at a furious pace in the heat of February, with Surrey growing into the game winning a few short corners, which they couldn’t convert. Essex however, still always looked good for a goal with quick counter attacking play until the first half drew to a close with Essex on top. The second half was a scrapper affair with lots of fouls, a couple of green cards and plenty of controversy. This started when Surrey were given a goal, when the ball was well past the baseline which was eventually disallowed. Surrey then began to look more threatening and began to press the Essex defence, but they were always able to find a way out mainly due to the brilliant play from Rory. However, Surrey did grab an equaliser from a short corner. After this goal the game opened up and both teams had chances, but with only a few minutes remaining the Aussie steps up finishing a tricky ball into the bottom corner of the goal giving Essex a 2-1 lead. Surrey were still able to muster a few chances but were denied by excellent saves from Schoua, which had been a feature throughout the game. This was a huge result for Essex putting them through to the final of the cup which is the furthest the team has got in recent history. Next step: the final on the 6th March.
Essex Men's Hockey 1st celebrate during their 2-1 Conference Cup Semi-Final win over Surrey 2nd.
Tennis – 3 of the Tennis Club teams played matches last week. At home, Men’s 1st made short work of Imperial 3rd in a 10-2 win, to progress to the final of the South Eastern Conference Cup! Away from home, Men’s 2nd won their league against Imperial 4th with 10-2, whilst Women’s 1st finished their season off with a great win against City with a score of 10-2! Triple score for the Blades. Next week is the final of the South Eastern Conference Cup at Brunel for Men’s 1st!
Mixed American Football 1st won their Quarter Final match of the Cup! Proving that there is such a thing as an "ugly win" the Blades move on to the Semi Finals on the back of a truly dominating defensive display. A super aggressive Sussex defence kept the Blades relatively quiet throughout the day. However, a turnover on the Sussex 30 was followed by Will Molyneux playing the read-option to perfection to keep the ball and swing around the right side of the line for a 7-0 halftime lead. Two missed field goal (FG) attempts in the first half kept the score worryingly close as both teams exchanged punts and field position. A pick at the Sussex 25 led to Billy Wagstaff finally connecting on a FG try which crept over the crossbar for a 10-0 lead. The Blades defence continued to stifle the Sussex O and a fake FG was snuffed out to turn over the ball and ultimately left the Blades to control the clock and run out time for a first play-off win for 10 years. A postponed game elsewhere means that the Blades next opponents are still to be decided but we will be ready whoever gets through. Final score – Essex 10-0 Sussex.
SUMMARY OF BUCS RESULTS – WEEK 17
Winning Percentage: 52%
Currently, the University of Essex is sits in 35th place across the country, with a total of 983.5 BUCS points.
Away from BUCS our Men’s and Women’s Swimming teams had their South East Regionals in Surrey, where they were competing against Surrey and Brighton, with Imperial being a no-show. Both Men’s relays – 4x50m freestyle and medley, were won by the Essex boys, who also achieved individual Golds in Men’s 50m back and Men’s 100m back. Essex achieved silver in the 8x50m freestyle relay with Women’s team also winning in the 100m freestyle. Shoutout to club President, Dhruva Preston, who achieved four Gold medals and one Silver.
Members of our Men's and Women's Swimming teams following their successful trip to Surrey for the South East Regional competition.
This weekend (9th/10th March) sees several members of our Swimming team heading to Oxford, to compete in the BUCS Biathlon Championships. Good luck to those taking part, with an update to follow in next week's blog.
And last but not least, our Men’s/Women’s Football and Men’s/Women’s Rugby clubs are holding a charity football match this Saturday at 1pm on the Grass Pitches at Wivenhoe Park. Money raised will go to Cardiac Risk in the Young, particularly in memory of Olivia Shaw. If you can, please watch and donate!