Rugby welcomes Ohio State to Doyt for historic rivalry

Reporter and Reporter

The Falcon rugby club will look to get back on track against its old rival, the Ohio State Buckeyes.

BG will host Ohio State this Saturday at 6:15 p.m. at Doyt Perry Stadium.

Ohio State is BG’s first ever opponent. When the Falcons took on the Buckeyes in the fall of 1968, it was the first ever match for BG rugby.

Today, the Buckeyes have a trio that could cause problems for the Falcons. Luke Hickey is the scrum half while captain on the team, and David Stauder is a pack player, who relies on his size to overpower the opponent.

“[Luke] is small but knows the game very well and is very aggressive for his size,” said BG center Lucas Smith.

Dan Noland is the third piece to the puzzle for the Buckeyes. Smith played with Noland in high school and witnessed his work ethic everyday, which will pose as a threat to the Falcons.

Smith is a transfer from Ohio State and could play an advantage on Saturday, as he knows the system and weaknesses of the Buckeyes. However, an injury may prevent him from playing on the field against his former team, as he will be a game time decision.

BG has been without center Dominic Mauer all season long due to studying abroad, so the loss of Smith could be a big blow for the team this weekend.

BG will have to continue to count on the younger players to fill the voids of the banged up veterans.

More than 40 years ago, BG was facing a seasoned club at the time that had already been in existence since 1964. Ohio State was led by grad students and professors from rugby-popular countries, such as England and Wales. In the early years, there were no eligibility rules, so age was not a factor.

The Falcons were led by a group of former high school athletes and only club founders Roger Holliday (England), Tim Fox (ex-Air Force Academy) and Jerry Nicolosi (ex-Ohio State) had any rugby experience. Nonetheless, BG won its only match that season by an 8-3 score and started a streak that continues today of never having had a losing season.