The Philadelphia Fight and the Rhode Island Rebellion sits atop the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast divisions respectively.
Rhode Island have outscored every team so far, averaging over 55 points a game, including a hard fought win last weekend against the New York Knights at Randalls Island. The Rebellion won 40 to 26, which included three tries to Center, Andrew Stockhecker, as well as 16 points being scored by Ben Sullivan (hooker), kicking six goals and also scoring a try.
After being knocked out in the first round of last year’s playoffs, Rhode Island are committed to going further this year. The squad has been placing a big emphasis on playing as a team unit and strengthening their mental toughness. Second Rower Lawrence Almagno Jr., believes the team is heading in the right direction, but there is no time for complacency.
“In this sport and competition we all realize that we cannot rest on a victory each game, we need to improve from the week before because we all know that the rest of the teams will,” Almagno said.
Contradicting the team’s results was the poor pre-season for the team, which was hampered due to weather. The Rebellion have added to their team’s depth by bringing in three Australians to their squad, being Jake Whittle (fullback), Jai Drake (lock) and Ben Sullivan. The team’s long term prospects are also looking strong as they have brought in debutants from high school competitions including, Junior Ray Richards (prop), Elmer Torres and Franklin Noesis who were both named as interchanges in round three.
In order to maintain their unbeaten record, the team will need to overcome the Connecticut Wildcats this Saturday at Brown University (5.30pm). The Rebellion can expect a tough and physical match and the Wildcats will have extra determination to win in order to avoid losing three matches in a row. Almagno said, “The Wildcats are packed with star talent and experience led by Matt Walsh and Curtis Cunz.” Both Walsh and Cunz are former teammates of Almagno from 2010.
Off-field news seems to be just as positive as the three consecutive wins this season for the Rebellion. The team’s home matches have been moved to Brown University’s Marvel Field, so the fan experience is enhanced as alcohol can be served and a full concession stand is available. The club’s website has also recently been given a facelift – see it for yourself at: http://rebellion-rugby.com/. Rhode Island Rebellion has been forming a close relationship with the Coogee Wombats from Sydney, Australia. The partnership involves a match against the team on September 5 and Geoff Tunks from the Wombats spent the beginning of the season with the team.
Support your local team this weekend, to see the round four fixtures click here. Tickets to this weekend’s game against the Wildcats are just $5 and entry is FREE for children under 12!
Round 3 – New York Knights vs. Rhode Island Rebellion
New York Knights 26 | Rhode Island Rebellion 40