Week 3 of the Pacific Rugby Premiership.
By Marco Cummings
For the third-straight weekend the Glendale Raptors will embark on another California road trip. And for the third-straight weekend, they’ll be looking to leave the Golden State with a victory as they head to SoCal to face Santa Monica.
Much like their opening match against Olympic Club, the Raptors will be looking to avoid the pitfalls of a classic “trap game” while they look to extend their lead atop the Pacific Rugby Premiership (PRP) standings.
“Last weekend they played against [San Francisco Golden Gate] they had a good weekend and they scored a few tries and some points,” Raptors head coach Andre Snyman said. “Once again, it’s one of those teams that you can’t take for granted.”
Following a solid defensive performance last week in a 33-6 win over Old Mission Beach Athletic Club (OMBAC), Glendale will be looking to maintain defensive momentum while at the same time pushing the tempo offensively.
“We’re going to focus again on defense and do some training in attack,” Snyman explained. “There are areas in in Santa Monica’s defense that I think we can attack and we can maybe have success.”
Armandt Peens will once again carry the load offensively at Fly Half in addition to the reliance of the speed and agility of wingers Dewon Reed and Max Statler. Glendale will once again be without its full complement of players however, with Zach Fenoglio out with injury and Chad London, Niku Kruger and Hanco Germishuys on USA Eagle duty once again.
But the biggest challenge is perhaps the rigors of travel, as the Raptors embark on their third road game in a travel heavy early part of the campaign.
“Obviously it’s four weeks in a row of travel. It takes its toll on the boys,” Snyman said of the challenge. “It’s tough, but I’m proud of the boys for sticking to it.”
Nevertheless, Snyman remains confident in the team’s methodology: “We just have got to focus on ourselves, like I always say.”
Kick off is at 1:30pm PT out in Santa Monica.