The Eagles qualified for the Rugby World Cup in 2011 with a solid 27-6 victory over the Los Teros of Uruguay Saturday in front of more than 2000 rugby fans at the Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill, Florida.
Fans had to be somewhat concerned going into Saturday’s match again the team from Uruguay. Even though history was on the side of the U.S. which had only lost to the Los Teros once in the last twenty years, they had nearly completed an amazing comeback against the Eagles a week earlier only to fall short by five.
The Eagles were in a similar position just a few months ago as well. After defeating the Canadian team by a score of 12-6 on the fourth of July they were set to qualify with a victory over the Canadian or loss by fewer than 6 points on the Canadians home field. Sadly, that was not the case as the U.S. played an error filled game and had to play down a man after losing a player to a red card early on.
This time the Eagles came out on top. In a very physical match, the Eagles fought to a 13-3 lead after 40 minutes of play. Superb backline play led to two tries during the half, in a game I which both teams knew every point, win or lose, would matter.
When qualifying for the Rugby World Cup teams play two matches, one on each team’s home field. It is the winner after scores from both matches are added together that qualifies.
The Los Teros scored first in the second half converting a penalty kick to narrow the U.S. lead to seven. That would be as close as they would get as the U.S. would respond with another try and a conversion to widen the lead back out to 20-6. The U.S. would finish the scoring for the day with another try and conversion making the final score 27-6.
With the win the Eagles have now qualified for the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand where they will compete in pool play with Australia, Italy, Ireland, and another European team yet to be decided.
After the game, fans and players alike undoubtedly adjourned to a watering hole to toast the day with a refreshing beverage or two. If they did so with a few Big River Red Ales from the Florida Brewing Company I am sure they were not disappointed. Your nose is teased with a pleasant malty scent and your palate is equally pleased as this beer taste tangy as it touches the palate but finishes with a strong hops taste. Not as refreshing as other beers, but easy to drink and a pleasure going down. At 5.3% ABV it will not end your party too early either.