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TRU Weekend in Review: Jan 13-21

It’s 2024 and rugby has officially kicked off in the TRU. Some teams who started in November/December continue to make progress, while others take to the pitch for the first time. Already there are big wins and surprise results, read more about it below!

Men's Premiership

There was only one match the past two weeks, but it provided some truly headline worthy news – Huns Defeat Dallas! That’s right, the boys in blue from Austin successfully defended their home turf on January 13th against 2022 National Champions Dallas RFC. It was Dallas who hit the scoreboard early with an impressive set piece stand on the goal line, but Austin winger George Tavarez had an absolute field day and found the in-goal area five times and added a conversion, accounting for 27 of the team’s 35 points. However, Dallas did manage to fire all engines in the waning minutes and came away with their own win at the final whistle; a crucial fourth try for a losing bonus point. With how fierce the competition is in the Premiership, it all could come down to that bonus point in playoff standings.

Until then, the Huns look to keep riding their high as they travel to the Austin Blacks this Saturday for the famed Austin derby. The Dallas Harlequins travel to Lake Highlands the same day to meet their crosstown rivals, the Dallas RFC.

Women's D1

The Women’s Division 1 is on a winter hiatus until the Valkyries host the sHARCs on March 9th. Both teams will be playing matches outside of Texas in order to hit the number of matches required to be eligible for USAR postseason, and we will cover them as they happen, kicking off February 24th.

Men's D2

Three games happened over the January 13th weekend, The Woodlands vs HARC, Grand Prairie vs DARC, and the Austin Huns versus the Dallas RFC. After a disappointing start to the season, The Woodlands roared back into the winners circle with a 53-0 rout of HARC. A stellar day for the backline as both wingers, the flyhalf, and fullback all got on the board for The Woodlands. Grand Prairie also righted their ship with a win after two early season losses in 2023, they took down DARC 38-12, giving them a 1-2 record. The only Dallas side to leave Austin with a win on the 13th was the Division 2, who got maximum bonus points with a 35-15 victory over the Huns. They remain perfect on the season, as do the Austin Blacks and HURT.

Plenty of games are upcoming for the next two weekends; our eyes are on Grand Prairie vs Fort Worth on January 27th and HURT vs Dallas on February 3rd. Those are sure to shake up the standings a bit.

Women's D2

The sHARCs got their first win of the season as they hosted Dallas RFC on January 13th. Both teams were 0-1 entering the match, but it was HARC who first found the try line at 11 minutes. They’d score two more quickly around 30 minutes, but Dallas added their own at the same time, keeping the contest close. That would be Dallas’ only try of the day though as HARC found the line four more times to make the final 43-5.

In matches upcoming, San Antonio looks for their first win of the season against HARC on January 27th while both the Dallas Harlequins and Little Rock are determined to remain undefeated as they take on Round Rock Rage and the sHARCs respectively on February 3rd.

Men's D3

Plenty of action in the Men’s Division 3 to catch up on. In the 1C subdivision (teams who have Premiership/D2 sides), the Austin Huns had a resounding 50-21 defeat of Dallas RFC while the Austin Blacks had a bit closer, but still solid 26-10 defeat of the Dallas Harlequins, failing to get a BP for four tries or more – which leaves the Huns on top of the table with maximum points. We’ll get to see the Austin Blacks square off against the Huns on January 27th though, so things could change quickly.

In the D3 Central, San Antonio races out to a 4-0 record with their January 20th defeat of Corpus Christi, an impressive 66-0. Fort Hood Old Skool and McAllen had a much closer battle, one that saw Fort Hood improve to 2-1 on the season, as they took down the Knights 26-21 thanks to a couple of tries by loosehead prop Zachary Mack. Old Skool will be back in action this weekend as they host Alamo City, while the battle of the shore takes place in Corpus Christi when the McAllen Knights come to town.

Heading east we catch up with Shreveport who have come out firing in 2024 with a tight 30-29 win over Bay Area on the 13th and followed up with a 50-26 slam of Galveston on the 20th. No better place to start your season than the top of the table, and that’s just what Shreveport has done. They’ll remain quiet until February 17th, giving them time to scout the opposition as the rest of the South battles it out. The Houston Arrows come back into play this weekend as they travel to Galveston, and then host BARC. Plenty to play for in the Houston and Louisiana area, that’s for sure.

Our final subdivision takes us north to DFW, Oklahoma, and Arkansas to check in on a season just kicked off. No matches played in the 2023 part of the 23/24 season, and only one played so far; there’s not much to unpack but plenty to speculate. Little Rock hosted the OKC Crusaders on January 13th and came away with the home win 24-0, so they currently sit on top of the division. Alliance look to challenge that berth though as they host Little Rock on the 27th, while the battle of OKC sees the Crusaders hosting the Tribe the same day.

Men's D4

More action from both the North and South in the Men’s Division 4 at the start of the year; let’s start with the lone match in the South. The Woodlands continued the success of their D2 side with a season opening win over HARC 43-21 on January 13th. We’ll have to wait until February 24th to see The Woodlands take on HURT and the battle of the undefeated sides, but HARC hopes to ruin that streak early as they rematch against HURT on February 3rd.

Heading north to the DFW metroplex, all eyes are on Collin County RFC who top the table undefeated after wins over Denton and Fort Worth in early January. Both matches were thrilling affairs as Denton scored 19 and Fort Worth 20 of their own points to stay on the board and stay engaged the entire time. Upcoming matches have Denton looking for their first win of the season on January 27th against Las Colinas and Collin County traveling to the Dallas RFC on February 3rd. The excitement never stops!

Note to reader: All data is gathered from team-entered match reports on RugbyXplorer, all information is up to date at time of posting. If you notice any inconsistencies or errors, please check with your team admin and if issues persist let me know at kat@texasrugbyunion.com.

All other commentary is unbiased and for fun. 

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