The 1st XV Pitch was buzzing last Wednesday evening as fans from all over campus gathered to see players from their halls line up against the BUCS 3s in a rugby match which promised to be a “physical and highly competitive fixture”. Liz Tyler watched for Label Sport.
The teams started as they meant to go on; putting everything they had into the match which unfortunately ended in disaster just minutes in for one All Stars player, who had to depart the pitch for an injury. The brilliant show of effort from both sides mustered on and though the BUCS 3s got close, the All Stars defended well and kept the AU side away from the try line. Things stayed fairly even until the BUCS 3s won a kickable penalty. Will Falle split the uprights to see the AU side go 3-0 up.
The IMS players did not let their strong play drop and not only managed to keep the BUCS side away from their try line but spent the next few minutes camped out in their oppositions half, getting close to scoring themselves. Just on the stroke of half-time, however, the BUCS 3s saw a crack in the All Stars defence and broke through to score. Falle missed the conversion, but the AU side led 8-0 going into the break.
With the game too close for comfort, the BUCS 3s came back from the break with an attacking mind-set. They stretched the All Stars defence to breaking point and pushed over, putting two more converted tries on the scoreboard, taking the score to 22-0.
To their credit, the All Stars did not give in and they broke their opposition’s defence to get some points on the board themselves, the score moving to 22-5.
The BUCS 3s reacted immediately, pushing through the All Stars’ weary defence to gain their fourth. Falle missed the conversion but the AU side was comfortably in the lead heading into the final minutes of the match, the score now 27-5.
As the game drew to a close, the BUCS side showed why they represent Loughborough Sport and scored their fifth and final try to end their clinical second half performance and take the final score to 32-5.
With the crowd choosing between supporting their own halls or their AU side, the atmosphere was brilliant and, despite the comprehensive win for the BUCS 3s, the game was a credit to Loughborough’s sporting environment. After all, regardless of the result, whichever side you chose, Loughborough still walk on water.