Written by Alex Goff    Sunday, 19 January 2014 16:59    PDF Print Write e-mail
Only Two at 2-0 in NorCal - DI League Roundup
Clubs - Men's DI Clubs

The East Palo Alto Bulldogs bulldogged their way over the San Jose Seahawks to win their second game of this young Northern California season.

Breaking through. SFGG v Diablo. Austin Brewin photo.
SFGG v Diablo. Austin Brewin photo.
Sacramento moved to 2-0 with a win over the EPA Razorbacks. Betty Loumoli photo.

San Jose were fast, skilled, and adventurous, but couldn't handle EPA's power game and lost 68-10. New Bulldogs Coach Alatini Saulala, the former USA outside center, might be forgiven for trying a game plan that emulated his personal open-running style. But dancing with the one who brought him, Saulala forced San Jose to stop his big guys, and they didn't.

Also in Northern California action, Sacramento defeated the East Palo Alto Razorbacks 32-19 in a game where the Lions felt they could have scored more.

“We had many opportunities for scoring tries. There were four opportunities that we were unable to close on in the first half,” said Lions Head Coach Ifereme Tawake during the half time break. “It’s hard to get an opportunity like that, so we’ve got to make use of it. Especially playing teams like this, you’ve got to go for it.”

Siaosi Heleta broke a big run from midfield in the 13th minute to get the scoring started. Viliami Finau capped off some slick handling for the Lions' second, but the Razorbacks replied right after.

“We could have scored a lot more early on, but the Razorbacks’ goal line defense was really effective,” said Lions team manager Aaron Frederick. “A lot of opportunities that we missed, we had to clean up in the second half.”

Up 13-5 at halftime, the Lions scored two minutes into the second half when Ratu Rinakama broke through, grubbered past the cover defense, and scores.

EPA replied to keep it close, but Maciu Koroi and then Rinakama put the Lions out of reach.

“They need to stick to the game plan that I gave them. We need to move the ball and run it,” said Tawake. “The Razorbacks wanted us to come in to the center and we really need to keep passing it.”

The Bulldogs and Lions are both now 2-0, while the Razorbacks and Seahawks fell to 1-1. Improving to 1-1 with big victories are Santa Rosa and SFGG.

Rosa were paced by Ilivasi Navia's three tries in their 50-17 win over Fresno. SFGG rebounded from their opening weekend loss to crush the Diablo Olde Gaels 73-3.

Diablo seemed to lack cohesion on the afternoon. SFGG, which is fielding its 2nd XV in this league, rebounded after a bit of a shock last week. Playing in DI league games set the younger players back a bit, but this week the SFGG squad were on the same page on Saturday, playing aggressively on offense and busting Diablo tackles.

With two weeks gone, already the two pools, the former-DII-heavy Group B, and the more established Group A, are separating, with Group A 6-2 and Group B 2-6.

Unofficial Standings

Northern California A W L T Pf Pa Pd BT BL Pts
EPA Bulldogs 2 0 0 108 25 83 2 0 10
Sacramento Lions 2 0 0 57 40 17 2 0 10
Santa Rosa 1 1 0 71 42 29 1 1 6
SFGG 1 1 0 88 43 45 1 0 5

Northern California A W L T Pf Pa Pd BT BL Pts
EPA Razorbacks 1 1 0 56 42 14 1 0 5
San Jose 1 1 0 55 92 -37 1 0 5
Diablo Gaels 0 2 0 27 118 -91 1 0 1
Fresno 0 2 0 27 87 -60 0 0 0


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