2009-10 Deep South Season Report

Deep South Rugby 2009-2010 Season Report

The following is an attempt to capture the highlights of rugby in the Deep South during the 2009-2010 season. If you have any other items you think should be added, send to deepsouthrugby@hotmail.com.

Congratulations to Steve Parrill on his appointment as Chair of Southern Referees Association (article in Archive Issue 3) and Michele Yarbrough on her appointment as USA Rugby South Assistant Collegiate Director (article in Archive Issue 3). 

The following LSU players (who played high school rugby in New Orleans) were selected to American Rugby News Collegiate All-American teams: Adam Ducoing (Brother Martin) , Bobby Johns (Jesuit), and Cody Cadella (Rummell). Congratulations to them and the coaches of New Orleans high school rugby.

Hilari French of the Baton Rouge Barbarians (Barbies) was selected as to the USA Rugby South All-Star Women’s Select Side to play in the National All Star Championship in Blaine, Minnesota on May 28-30th.

Mary Ann Reynolds, Danye O’Mahoney, and Madeline Wilbanks from Auburn were selected to the USA Rugby South U-23 Select Side to play in the U-23 National All-Star Championship in Santa Barbara, California on June 11-13.

Cameron Falcon of Shaw H. S. was selected and attended the High School All American Camp and played against Canada in December. He was on the list of players selected for the tour to Toronto in the summer of 2010, but unfortunately suffered a tear of his ACL in the left knee during the La. H. S. Championship game against Brother Martin and was not able to tour.

Below are reports on the Deep South Union team champions and how they did in their divisions and who went on to win the national division titles.


Teams Review: Men’s Division 2 

(There is currently no Men’s Division 1 side in the Deep South Union.)

South’s West Division 2.

The Pool Points (3 for win, 2 for draw, 1 for loss, 0 for forfeit but played, -1 for forfeit not played, -3 for no show) for the USA Rugby South West Division for 2009-2010 season were are follows:

Baton Rouge 13

Battleship  11

Jackson  11

Little Rock 17

Memphis  15

New Orleans 19

NORFC finished ahead of Little Rock as the No. 1 seed even though NORFC lost to Little Rock on Feb 20th in Little Rock by a score of 22-20. Based on the structure of the South Division 2 Pools, New Orleans only plays Baton Rouge and Battleship twice a year, and plays Memphis, Little Rock, and Jackson once a year. New Orleans scored 328 points to 56 points scored against them in the 7 regular matrix games they played in the spring 2010 season. In playoffs NORFC  faced Montgomery at home on April 10th and won 51-0.  Little Rock faced Knoxville in Knoxville on April 10th as #2 team out of USA Rugby South West Division and won 39-12.

In South Regional play on May 1st and 2nd  in Charleston, NORFC defeated Charleston  15-7 and then lost to Tampa Krewe 21-17. (Krewe beat Little Rock 39-17 the day before.) NORFC advanced to national play-offs as the USA Rugby South’s number 2 seed. On May 22nd New Orleans fell to Lincoln Park in Columbia, South Carolina, (22-18)  in the National Division 2 Final 8 Play-Offs. NORFC defeated Bayonne (Northeast #1 seed going into the tournament) 53-12 in the consolation match.

Tampa Krewe defeated Chicago (26-17) and Brandywine (32-5) in Columbia to advance to the USA Rugby Division 2 Final Four in Glendale, Colorado, on June 5th-6th. In their first match they faced Snake River (Boise, Idaho). The other semi-final match was Doylestown (PA) vs San Francisco.

Men’s Division 3

In Pool G of the USA Rugby South Division 3 Matrix the points (3 for win, 2 for draw, 1 for loss,0 for forfeit but played, -1 for forfeit but not played, -3 for no show) were as follows:

Columbus   20

Okaloosa  21

Panama City  7

Pensacola  17

Tallahassee 7

On April 10th in play-offs Birmingham (which was the USA Rugby South Pool D champ over Atlanta Bucks, High Country, & Athens) lost 6-0 to Johnson City in Johnson City, and Okaloosa hosting Krewe B from Tampa defeated them 28-13.  In the semi-finals on May 1st in Charleston,  Okaloosa lost to Triad 36-13. Triad fell the next day to Hilton Head by a score of 39-8. Hilton Head advanced to the national tournament as the South’s #1 seed and Triad the #2 seed.

In the USA Rugby National Round of 16 Triad was defeated by Cedar Rapids (Midwest #1 seed) by a score of 40-0. Cedar Rapids advanced to the semi-final play-offs by beating Old Gaelic (Mid-Atlantic  #2 seed) 23-13. Triad lost to Buffalo 37-15 in the consolation match. The South’s #1 seed (Hilton Head) fell to Virginia (Mid-Atlantic #1 seed) 20-5. Virginia advanced to the semi-final play-offs by defeating Fox Valley (Mid-West #2 seed) 48-12. Hilton Head won their consolation match against North Jersey 15-5.

Men’s Collegiate: Division 1

There is no Deep South Division 1 Side, but LSU (who plays in the Texas Union) is a spiritual Deep South side. The Tigers repeated as Western Union champions and made it to the Sweet 16,  played at Life University in Marietta, Georgia.

On day 1 LSU lost to Penn State 31 to 25 but came thundering back the next day to crush UCLA 41-14. The Tigers ended up ranked 11th in the country. Penn State was slaughtered by Univ. California – Berkeley 65-19 in the national semi-final.  Cal went on to defeat BYU (defending champ) in the national championship match by a score of 19-7 to claim their 25th national championship.

Men’s Collegiate Division 2

Points: (4 for win, 2 for draw, 1 for 4 or more tries, 1 for loss by less than 7 points)

Southeastern Division 2 Standings

Univ.  Georgia  25

Univ.  Tennessee  25

Vanderbilt  5

Univ.  Mississippi 14

Univ. of  Alabama 12

Mississippi State 6

Auburn 3

No Deep South side advanced to play-offs.

The  South #2 seed, North Carolina State, advanced to the round of 8 by defeating the Pacific #1 seed, California Maritime Academy, 28-17. In the Round of 8 NC State lost to Miami Univ. of Ohio 43-5. The South #1 seed, Appalachian State, defeated Western Oregon (Pacific #3 seed) 33-17 to advance to the Round of 8 where they were defeated by Temple 25-10.

Claremont Colleges (California) defeated Temple University in the Division 2 championships in Stanford, California by a score of 25-19 to claim its first ever national championship.

Men’s Collegiate Div 3 Bayou League

West Division: University of Louisiana Lafayette (Champ), Tulane , Loyola

East Division: Univ. West Florida, Univ. Southern Mississippi, Spring Hill

ULL had playoff victories against Springhill College, West Florida, Sewanee and the reigning Division 3 champion, Coastal Carolina. During their matches in play-offs ULL outscored opponents 178-24.

ULL advanced to the Final Four of the National Small College Rugby Championship.

The National Small College Rugby Organization (www.nscro.org) was created so that “small” colleges and universities could compete for a national championship in rugby. NSCRO was formed three years ago. In 2009 the NSCRO Men’s Division 3 National Champion was Coastal Carolina University. Participating teams in the championship this year were:
Region 1 Champion – Keene State College (New England RFU)
Region 2 Champion – William Paterson University (Met NY RFU)
Region 3 Champion – Penn State University – Berks Campus (East Penn RU)
Region 4 Champion – University of Louisiana-Lafayette (Deep South RU)

There were 99 eligible Division 3 teams representing 13 Local Area Unions  which were part of 4 different Territorial Unions.  ULL lost to Keene State (N.H.) College 25-22 in the semifinals, but rebounded to shut out William Paterson 43-0 in the consolation game. Penn State-Berks won the championship, defeating Keene State 11-6.

Tremendous congratulations to the coaches and players of the ULL Ragin Cajuns. Sixteen of the 26 players on ULL’s roster hail from the New Orleans area. Nine more are from Lafayette, with one Texan.


Women Division 2

Baton Rouge lost to Miami 21-7 in USA South Semi-Finals in October, 2009. BR Barbies went on to defeat Memphis in the consolation match to capture 3rd place in USA Rugby South.

Miami defeated Charleston 22-5 in the finals and both sides advanced to the national championships held in Houston on Nov. 7th and 8th. In the national tournament 10 teams competed in 3 pools. Miami lost to Providence in their pool match 31-12. Providence went on to lose to Raleigh in the semi-finals by a score of 31-5. Raleigh won the championship by defeating Pittsburgh by a score of 12-0.

Miami defeated Houston 31-0 to finish 5th in the national tournament.


Women’s Collegiate – Division 2 (No Deep South Div 1 sides)

Points in USA Rugby South Central Division:  (4 for win, 2 for draw, 1 for 4 or more tries, 1 for loss by less than 7 points)

Lee University 23

GA Tech 17

Auburn 15

Mid TN State  11

Emory 0

Univ. of  Alabama 4

Auburn won 3 and loss 2 (losing to Lee University and Georgia Tech). University of Alabama played 5 and loss 4. Defeating Emory.

On March 6th  Auburn defeated the University of Alabama 40 -21 scoring 8 tries to 3.

Deep South Youth Rugby

The  State B- Side Tournament was held at ESA in Lafayette. The following are the results of the B-side tournament.
ESA 35 Bro Martin (B) 20
Jesuit (B) 12 ESA 5
Jesuit (B) 29 Bro Martin (B) 5
Saturday,  April 17, was the Louisiana Youth State Championship. The following were the seedings in the tournament.
  #1 Shaw v #4 Bro Martin
 #2 Jesuit v #3 Niceville

Jesuit Blue Jays captured the 2010 Louisiana State High School Championship by defeating Niceville 28-10 in their first match and Brother Martin 27-3 in the final.

Shaw represented the Deep South Union at the April 24th USA Rugby South Youth Championships at Furman College in South Carolina due to Jesuit and Brother Martin not being able to muster a squad for the trip. Shaw finished 5th out of the field of 8 teams . Shaw’s High School All-American Cameron Shaw was sorelymissed as he was out due to torn knee ligament suffered in LA High School Championships. Charlotte Catholic from North Carolina repeated as the South Champion defeating Walton High School from Marietta, Georgia, 15-8 in overtime. In the national tournament in Utah on the weekend of May 21st Charlotte Catholic defeated Snow Canyon (Pacific #2 seed) 17-12, but lost to Xavier (Northeast #1 seed) in semi-finals 24-15. Xavier defeated Gonzaga (mid-Atlantic #1 seed) 32-10 to take the High School Championship in the first all Eastern side final. Charlotte lost to Jesuit of Sacramento (who were the defending champions and Pacific #1 seed going into the tournament) 61-3 to end up in 4th place in the 8 team play-off tournament.

Louisiana (Deep South Union) had no Boys U-19 Club side competing at the USA Rugby South Championships. The final was a repeat of the last 3 years – Highland Rugby Club (Utah) playing the United Rugby Club (Utah). United won the very hard and closely fought match to end Highland’s 20 straight national championships.

Louisiana High School Rugby Schedule 2010

Below is the first draft of the 2010 La High School Rugby Schedule. If you have conflicts please contact the coach of the other team and work out a suitable change and then call or e-mail Gary Giepert (giepert@cox.net)  with the change and he will update the master schedule. Please work out all changes by Dec 31. The schedule becomes final as of January 1 , 2010.
For New Orleans teams all games will be at the Gretna field and the first team is the home team who is responsible the home team who is responsible for the getting the field ready and the ref.
3 NORFC High School Rugby Clinic 11am-2pm
16 Bro Martin v Jesuit 1pm
23 Jesuit v Rummel 1pm
Bro Martin @ ESA 12 noon
Bro Martin @ Lafayette 1:30pm
26 Shaw v Bro Martin 4:30 pm
30 ESA @ Rummel 10am
Shaw v LSU (B) 12 noon
2 Jesuit v Shaw 4:30pm
6 Bro Martin v White Station in Jackson 11:30 am
Shaw, Jesuit, ESA, Niceville, Alliance Round Robin in N O
9 Rummel v Bro Martin 4:30pm
23 Shaw v Rummel 4:30pm
25 Jesuit v Bro Martin 4:30pm
27 Shaw v ESA @ BR 11am
Jesuit v Niceville in Mobile 1pm
Lafayette@ Rummel 12 noon
4 Bro Martin v Shaw 4:30pm
6 Bro Martin v Niceville in Mobile 12 noon
Rummel v Jesuit 12noon
13 Jesuit @ ESA 12 noon
Jesuit @ Lafayette 1:30 pm
Rummel v Niceville @ Mobile 12 noon
Bro Martin @ Nash Bash
16 Shaw v Jesuit 4:30 pm
18 Bro Martin v Rummel 4:30pm
20 ESA v Niceville in Mobile 12 noon
Lafayette@ Shaw 12 noon
23 Rummel v Shaw 4:30pm
25 Shaw v Harvey School 4:30pm
26 Bro Martin v Harvey School 4:30pm
27 La State B-side Tournament @ ESA
8,10,13 Make up days and possible playoff dates
17 La State Championship Tournament in N O
( Top 4 teams in League)
24-25 South Regional Tournament
21-22 USA National Championships Salt Lake City Utah

Michele Yarbrough: Appointed Assistant Collegiate Director for USA Rugby South

 On Feb. 17th, 2010, USA Rugby South President Kevin Kitto approved and announced the appointment of Michele Yarbrough as Assistant Collegiate Director for USA Rugby South. Michele will work with USA Rugby South Collegiate Director Marty Bradley in the administration of the women’s collegiate competitions.

Michele’s dedication to the development of rugby is well known to ruggers in the Deep South Union and while congratulating Michele on this responsibility and honor, deepsouthrugby.net asked her a few questions to preserve a bit of the history of the moment and so readers, who don’t know Michele, can find out a little more about her. Below are the questions and Michele’s answers.

Question: When and where did you start playing?

I started playing Rugby at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, MS.  During the fall of 2000, I was challenged by one of the men’s players to see if I could last a whole women’s practice.  I went out to practice and the rest is really history for me.

 Question: Greatest moment as a player?

This is a very hard question to answer for me.  I have been extremely blessed to be around many great rugby players over the past ten years.  As a result I have so many moments with rugby that I will never forget.  It has truly made me who I am today.  If I had to pick one moment though, it would be the USM Women’s Alumni Game in 2005.  First I was asked to be captain – for the first time.  I played 60 minutes on a fractured ankle and ended up getting Man of the Match.  The only game that comes close to this is our first home game in the spring of 2001. We beat LSU and I think everyone on the team got to score a try! After that game I had the opportunity to thank the one person who had gone so unrecognized with the USM Women’s team, Sabrina Scott (Bean to those who know her).  She is truly the reason that the USM Women’s Rugby team has survived over the past ten year and deserved the credit.  To this day she is the one coach that I have had that I never want to disappoint.
Question: Overall greatest Rugby moment?

This is really going to be a toss up between two moments for me. 

This past weekend I was brought to tears of pride over 25 young women that I have been assisting this year to develop their own women’s collegiate rugby team.  At their first home game this weekend, they had the forethought to sing the national anthem before the match, invited dignitaries from their University and the President of our LAU, Charles Dube, was there to present them with a game ball.  They played with the gusto and drive that makes rugby the sport that it is today.  To make the day even better, they won!

The other moment that rivals this will happen on April 24, 2010.  The USM Women’s Rugby team will be celebrating its Tenth Anniversary of the start of the team.  We will have an alumni game, banquet, and I imagine some type of fun rugby awards.  I will have the opportunity to referee this game as my playing days are over.  It will be a bittersweet weekend.  When this team was formed there were at least 4 other collegiate women’s teams in the area (LSU, SLU, Loyola, & MSU), but there was no backing in our LAU for a matrix and now USM is the only team out of those original teams that is still around, but at the same time, we now have such great support from our LAU that this year we have seen the birth of two new college women’s teams (Alabama and Auburn) and in their first year, they are playing in a matrix!
Question: Views on direction of womens collegiate rugby in South, in Deep South, in nation?

Deep South Direction :I think our LAU has ignored women’s rugby for a very long time and if anyone wants to challenge me on that point I welcome them too, as I saw it first hand when I was in college.  I can honestly say that over the past two to three years that our LAU has made leaps and bounds on the emphasis that is being placed on women’s rugby.  We have made major efforts to educate people who are trying to start new teams and offer them as much assistance and guidance as we can.  This being said, while I have served as the Discipline Chair for this LAU, I have been grossly upset by watching teams being decimated by one or two bad eggs.  When this has occurred it takes several years to rebuild a team.  It is evident to me that it greatly benefits a college team to have an adult (Yes,  I said adult or just a non student) around to keep them grounded both on and off the field.  (It is worth pointing out Adult refers to a state of mind not age). I am excited and proud to be part of the Deep South Rugby Union. We are going through a  period of growth, which is great for us and the sport of rugby!

 Rugby South Direction : From what I have learned over the past few years and in the most recent few weeks, I think that USA Rugby South is moving in the correct direction for women’s collegiate rugby.  Between people like Marty Bradley, Nancy Campbell and Kevin Kitto, there is no doubt in my mind that there is a great deal of backing for women’s collegiate rugby.  What I can most definitely point out, as a need, is the help from past players to step in and volunteer to coach.  For teams to continue to excel in the South, we need more people who have already hung up their boots to pick them back up and lend time to these new players.  In my opinion collegiate rugby takes the most time to coach and lend direction to, mainly because you only have players for 2 to 4 years and rugby is fighting for their attention, which is split between school, work and that wonderful college experience.  To every former player who coaches, referees or is an administrator a big thank you!  It takes the work of all of you to make these teams what they are today and your continued support to take them forward.


Personal Rugby Accomplishments

2009                 Deep South Rugby Referee Society

Appointed  the Referee Development Officer with the responsibility to determine, schedule and refer training for all referees in our society.

2008-Current       Deep South Rugby Union                                                     

Appointed  the Discipline Chair with the responsibility to determine equitable discipline for inappropriate actions both on and off the field.

2004-2009         Battleship Men’s Rugby Football Club, Inc. , Mobile, AL

Elected to two terms as Club President 2006-2008

Elected to four terms as Club Treasurer 2005-2008

Elected to two terms as Club Secretary 2004-2005

Served for six years as a Tournament Chairwoman 2004-2009

(If you have a Michele story to add to the article, send it to deepsouthrugby@hotmail.com ).

Baton Rouge Redfish 7s Tournie 2010

By Cara De Carlo

Saturday was a rugby day.

What the hell does that mean?

Kids, I used to play rugby. Yes, rugby: the game where 20 people seem to be looking for one contact lens, and then trying to kill each other. The photos of me playing rugby are brilliant, because you don’t know I’m running AWAY.

Fortunately for everyone involved, I stopped playing the game and started enjoying it. What you might not know about rugby is that it’s not just a game. It’s an entire culture, and it has its own holiday: the sixth day of the week. Here’s what all rugby rookies should learn:

 1. A 7s Tournament Is Not a Card Game.

During the summer, rugby is played in fast, 14-minute games with only seven on a side. This is because the missing eight are in a hospital. But the quick format with smaller teams allows for a lot of teams to get together and play a great tournament.

Here’s what you can expect by the pitch…

“I thought it was guys … in striped shirts … and you always had to play in the mud,” said Kelly. Kelly plays for Baton Rouge Women’s Rugby, same as I did.

Kristen added to this: “You can hate somebody on the field, and [then] you go to the party and it’s like nothing ever happened!”

Kelly nodded. “You’re friends,” she says.

Some guys in the green-and-yellow New Orleans colors passed by.

“No slapping!” said one.

“I don’t have a shirt on.”

Other players talked of other tournaments:

“…did shots of 151 and hot sauce!”

“One of our guys passed out with both doors open … in the middle of Birmingham!”

“Wow,” came the reply. “One of our guys went to jail when we were in Birmingham!”

See? The atmosphere was awesome. Best of all: it wasn’t Birmingham.

2. The Action’s Like Tiger Football on Fast-Forward.

Here, let me show you:

At 2 p.m., Baton Rouge Women’s Rugby faced New Orleans. Kaufmann-Swang kicked the ball for B.R., and N.O. recovered. A maul attempt by Baton Rouge resulted in a stoppage in play. N.O. took the ball deep into the B.R. end, but a kick by Kaufmann-Swang brought B.R. the distance. B.R. recovered close to the try zone, and French scored early in the game’s first half.

As fast as Baton Rouge scored, the game was reset. B.R. kicked to New Orleans, followed by a scrum in Baton Rouge’s own end. The ball was forced out at the 5. There was a line-out to inbound the ball, and Baton Rouge took possession at the 10. A Galliano-to-Crouch pass resulted in a forward call, and play stopped once again. I, in turn, paced nervously and broke two pens.

The half ended with Baton Rouge up. So New Orleans kicked, but it required a do-over. Baton Rouge recovered, but not definitively.[1]This began Baton Rouge’s defensive battle to the finish. New Orleans kept the ball in Baton Rouge’s end, but French registered two pivotal tackles within a minute of each other. There were three scrum-downs and a maul attempt, but all Baton Rouge needed was possession. They got it on the third scrum-down…

Galliano passed the ball to Kaufmann-Swang, who paused to find the gap. She found it, and sprinted 70m for the try. This game ended with a score of 14-0 Baton Rouge over New Orleans, but New Orleans had certainly put up a fight.

You shoulda been there…

On the men’s side, game play continued in the tournament pool.

“We won our first one and had a draw for our second,” said Mike Dellafiora of Team BR1, “so we kinda need to beat the dog sh–t outta these cats.”

Well, BR1 did win that match (against Galveston), putting them at the top of their pool for the semifinals. Scoring tries for BR1 were Molina, Kelso, Tabor, Somers, and Kelso again.

Said Kaufmann-Swang about Kelso: “He’s awesome at rugby … AND sex!”

On that note…

3. With Rugby, There’s Always a Social

And I don’t mean a cooler of beers and orange wedges. BR1 won the tournament, but the party was for all. In Baton Rouge, this means a certain bar under a certain overpass.

This year’s theme was “Redneck.” One thing about rugby parties – there is always a theme. It’s never just Saturday if it can be Toga Day or Trashy Versions of Bible People Day. (OK, that last one I may have made up – for now.)

Anyway, I showed up in my T-shirt and jeans, but everyone else had on cutoffs, overalls, T-shirts without sleeves … in general, it was clothing without limbs.

I didn’t want to stand out too much, so immediately I started drinking. Besides, it only improves the other traditions.

I wasn’t too far in the bag when I heard the whole bar start to sing: “Heyyy, Zulu War-rior!” and I knew to get out of the way.

Fast as the Phillies considered Halladay, a guy and a girl came sprinting through the barroom naked. They went into the hall, startled the guests on the other side, and ran back out the door from which they came.

I assure you this is normal, because every time new players score their first try, they have to get naked at the party. And why shouldn’t they? I often find that I, too, am naked when I score…

There is one final tradition of a Saturday Rugby Day that I have to tell you about. It’s the songs. When the people are just drunk enough, it seems like a good idea to sing a standard battery of rugby-camp songs. This includes hits such as “If I Were the Marrying Kind” and “The Days of the Week.” (Guess what kind of day is Saturday!)

That night, a guy from one of the visiting teams stepped up to lead the songs. But his arm was in a sling, making it impossible to do all the required vulgar gestures. Thus, he was forced to “Shoot the boot!”

Ever see a man in a sling chug beer from a moldy, old, cowboy boot? Wait, you have? Sh–t, I’m going to lunch with you from now on…

4. Mark It on Your Calendar

OK, so you missed the 7s tournament this year, but now that you know all about it, you can plan to go the next time it’s in town. Remember, games are at BREC’s Highland Road Park. It’s Baton Rouge Rugby, baby. GET SOME.

[1]The average 7s tournament is played in 7,000-degree heat. This causes the ball to become coated in a frictionless mixture of sweat and SPF. In scientific terms, no one can hang on to the greasy motherf–ker…

Vomit Sliding & Rugby with Manners

Dear Fran, Tom, and the rest of the Pack,

I was reading the website DeepSouthRugbyUnion.com when I stumbled onto the slogan poll.

 I voted for Rugby with Manners. It is a catchy phrase.

 I thought about rugby combined with manners for a brief moment. I went back to my very first rugby party which was in Fort Wayne, Indiana circa 1975. Bill Campbell from Boon, North Carolina came to town and he was friends with my ex. We attended the party with him and at the beginning it seemed like a regular party. We dined on grilled hamburgers and slammed beer in large quantities. The singing began and I was hooked. “This is Mad Magazine live.” I said to my ex. He ignored me as he usually did which is why I now call him my ex.

 I went looking around in the next room where they were playing music and dancing. But it wasn’t couples dancing and it wasn’t line dancing; it was a group of about ten people holding beer cups and having a ball, all dancing together. I joined in the dancing and singing and nearly every song became an aerobic workout. The beer was sloshing everywhere. In the group, there were some tall, handsome lads; a few, cute girls; and a short, stocky guy whom everyone called “Hooker.”

The beer was sloshing everywhere and I stopped to roll up my bell bottom jeans. I rejoined the group and began dancing again when, out of the blue, Hooker hurled all over my shoes. He did it with intent. It wasn’t a roll over and puke out of the side of his mouth type of puke. It was an aim-his-mouth-at-my-feet-and-turn-his-head-back-and-forth-to-insure-complete-coverage, type puke. In my fine, upper-middle class upbringing with charm school lessons, etiquette training and ballroom dance lessons that included more etiquette; I never once stumbled into the proper, mannerly response to someone puking on ones shoes. What would Miss Manners do?

I went to the bathroom of their clubhouse and put my foot in the toilet and flushed it. I put my second foot in the toilet and flushed that. I tried to dry the old shoes with paper towels and soon gave up. I touched up my lipstick, in hopes of diverting attention away from my feet, and I returned to the dance floor.

When I returned to the room, with a fresh beer; the group was standing in a bigger circle outside the dance floor and Hooker was the center of attention. He would stand in the middle of the room and regurgitate in all directions. He would then run to the edge of the room where the crowd would part a hole for him. Then, with a running start, he would hurl himself onto the floor and slide the rest of the way in his on puke. He slid in the vomit on his back, on his side, curled up in a ball and every which way making quite a show. He would then slam beer, replenishing his supply, while others in the room would measure his slide, stepping heel to toe along his slide mark of vomit. Then, they announced how many “feet” the slide was. The room cheered no matter what the call. This went on for a while and I was so enamored with this group I was soon measuring the slides myself. Hooker had an impressive skill. I never once saw him stick a finger down his throat. Someone told me, he had been a wrestler in school. His mom made him eat every meal and his coach told him to lose weight. He had taught himself to toss cookies at will to please both authority figures at once. This was the mid 70s so he must have been the world’s, first known bulimic.

 I have this embarrassingly good memory and this was thirty-four years ago if my math is correct and I will never forget my introduction to this wonderful world of rugby with its own, unique set of manners.

 And the loser is: Inspiring rednecks to fall in love with Rugby

Color me a Redneck.

 Anita Beer

Fran’s Comments

I went both years I rented the other half of the club  – Mardi Gras 82 and 83.  The group was called Party ‘Til You Puke. And I don’t remember how they found the clubhouse. The first year was an Elvis Theme and included a poster of Elvis stating “Don’t Puke On My Blue Suede Shoes.” The second year they left a couple sacks of oysters, which Roger Escude and I prepared every way but the wrong way the next day for the Seattle RFC guys staying with us during carnival. Yes, it started out gross and got worse. But I loved those guys.


Steve Parrill – Chairman of Southern Referee Association

Deep South Rugby’s very own Steve Parrill was recently chosen Chairman of the Southern Referee Association.

Steve began playing rugby at Southeastern Louisiana University in 1982. He played for the Hammond Black Lions while they were in existence and then for New Orleans RFC. He began refereeing full time around 2001/2002 and became chairman of the Deep South Referee Society when Alastair Twaddle left in 2003/04. He is a licensed IRB Trainer and Educator for USA Rugby and currently serves on the training committiee for USA Rugby. He is certified to teach the various courses offered by the IRB and also to train educators who teach those classes. He is a B3 territorial referee for the South. This grade is now considered a T panel referee.

His recent selection as Chairman of the Southern Referee Association  includes responsibility for the Deep South Society, Florida and SEERS, which is the rest of the south except for Tennessee.

Alex Sharland has become Chair of the Deep South Referees Association.

What follows is the new grading system for referees in the United States.
The grading system for referees in the United States has just changed going into this year.
The new system:
The grades of D, C3, C2 and C1 will now be called L4, L3, L2 and L1 (which stands for Local). And all the B grades (B3, B2, and B1) will all collapse into one combined T Panel grade. (This stands for Territorial)

The progression for referees will now be:
Local – L4 to L3 to L2 to L1 to
Territorial – T panel to
National – National Focus Group to National Panel to International Panel.
The system for T Panel refs will use just a number for the match (just like the old evaluation system) but there will be no grade. It will be expected that a new T panel ref will have lower scores than a referee who is about to be promoted to the USA FG or National panel. Likewise, a T panel referee who is getting older and nearing the end of their refereeing career would be expected to score low and even score below grade for a T Panel. This would lead to the referee being moved to a L1 if they wanted to continue to be a competitive referee, or they would be given the option of taking a Directors grade of T Panel and being moved to a non competitive category.
The evaluation manual has been changed to reflect this new T Panel grade and the competences in the Tackle, Ruck, Communication and Control elements has been merged together. Some of the B3 competences have been pushed down to L1 (Old C1).

Fond Memories of Wayne and Other Thoughts from Anita Beer

By Anita Beer

Fond Memories of Wayne and Other Thoughts from Anita Beer”

The other day I received the email below from an old friend whom I haven’t seen in 25 years. We were brought together again by memories of Wayne Fontenelle’s life and our continuing sadness at his passing. Below are some of her thoughts on Wayne and the mental ramblings of a world class rugger hugger.

hiya Tom and Fran and Lads of the NORFC!!

It’s Jennifer here – from now on to be known as “Anita Beer”. I’ve gone from young, beautiful and willing to make a beer run to old, saggy, and wrinkled with cottage cheese laden thighs spilling over the sides of my chair. And I’m getting that old man smell.

I was so sad to hear about Wayne passing. I saw Wayne the same day I saw Fran last at the Jazz Festival circa 2003 or 4 perhaps? We ran into Fran at our campsite where he gave me directions to his site. I went over there later that day. I never found you, Fran; but fortunately I ran into Wayne and his wife and daughter. I remember being stunned that Wayne was all growed up, with a family. And they were all so beautiful together with their brown hair and big brown eyes. Now I am more than just stunned that he has passed away. I am so sad for all of you and his family. It seems he lived his whole life in warp speed … as fast as he could run.

And I am given this opportunity to reconnect with you two and I cannot resist. What if one of you drops dead before you get this email! I shouldn’t procrastinate another minute. Just know I loved you and if you ever croak I would be so sad yet richly endowed with wonderful memories.

Thomas, I saw your house yesterday. Since nobody buys art during a recession; I am riding it out, working as a field researcher for the University of Mich. They are doing the New Orleans Katrina Study and I am basically their eyes on the ground down here. The respondents are picked randomly based on their address. My job is to track them down and I have been trained to fill out a form assessing each housing unit at each address. I am a highly trained professional. So when Ellen was in need of a Housing Unit Assessment, I was her man. Do I need to over amplify the importance of my position any more?

My highly trained professional assessment of the Housing Unit is: Ellen and her friends should stay with me.

Not because there is anything wrong with Crosby’s house, I think its very cute. I just want the company of a bunch of fun girls and, as always, I am still in it for my own personal gratification.

Tom, I love your little pink house. I started singing John Mellencamp when I got there. ” awwww for you and me!” Everybody, sing with me!

I went around to the back yard and saw your deck. I saw some sweaty, thick-thighed rugby players sucking on a beer keg and I heard them singing the Abortion Song in front of a really pregnant woman. I saw the Edwards Brothers hovering over your chiminea full of burning pot. In the far corner of the lot, by the alley, I saw Maureen puking with a Jamesons pocket rocket stuck in her nest of hair. I saw Fran in his black man costume asking, “Where da white women?” (Fran, I don’t know if you knew this or not but I was on acid that night and you and your costume caused me to have a quantum personality change.) Back to what I saw at Tom’s house.

I saw the outdoor “shower”. No no no. This is not a shower. Here, again, is where Tom’s perspective takes flight on reality. A shed is not a house and a garden hose does not a shower make. I saw Wally, naked, taking a shower. I threw some soap in his general direction.

I’ve had chances to reconnect via email with a few people over the years and never have I experienced the fun of reliving the past such as this has been. Writing this letter is a blast as I go back to those days spent with you guys and the New Orleans Rugby Football Club on Oak Street and the pitch on the river and the trips and the singing and the fun and the dancing and the impromptu visits in the night from Rocek and (ok there I mentioned him. Sated?) some of my favorite times were spent with you guys. You contributed greatly to making the whole of my life exquisite. I am truly blessed to have those days to remember, making friends with Ellen and you all, when I was young and cute and we all had so much fun. Exquisite.

I am now living in Lakeview rebuilding this house we bought after the flood. And in lieu of turning my fingers into bloody stumps, rewriting what is already there — here is the link to somewhat update you on where we are now.

www.jenniferporterartist.com the storm story sort of says most of it. And I have an all new site under construction with more of that story coming. Stay tuned.

So if you guys drop dead tomorrow, you will know how much I appreciate how you contributed to one of the best phases of my life.

And, by the way, I mailed a copy of this to my lawyer.

much love,

Jenn … oops, Anita