Bears for the PAC Rugby 7s Championship

Bears for the PAC Rugby 7s Championship

Kelley Cox/klcfotos

Cal Rugby will take part in the two-day event on November 12-13.


Cal goes across the bay to Stanford for his ninth championship title

BERKELEY – California rugby is set for its final competition of the Fall 7s season at the PAC Rugby 7s Championship tournament, being held at Stanford on November 12-13. The two-day event will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Networks.

The Bears have won eight of the nine league titles since the tournament began, including the last three back-to-back in 2018, 2019 and 2021; Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there was no tournament in 2020.

At last year’s PAC 7s, Cal won the tournament at the program’s home turf, Witter Rugby Field. The Bears defeated Arizona 27-5 in the semifinals and then beat UCLA 10-0 in the cup final. Over the two days of play, 12 different Golden Bears scored a total of 24 tries against conference opponents Oregon, USC, Utah, Arizona and UCLA. 2022–2023 returnee and current co-captain of the team Max Schumacher was Cal’s leading try-scorer with his six tries throughout the weekend, including four in the opener against Oregon and one in the final against the Bruins. The Bears defense also performed well in last year’s tournament, never allowing an opponent to score more than one try in a game.

This weekend’s contest will be the third and final Sevens tournament of the fall. Cal claimed both the Cal Poly 7s and Treasure Island 7s tournament titles in October. The Bears sent two teams to each tournament, one of which was a development team, and both teams outperformed their pools to advance to the quarterfinals and semifinals each time. Cal’s top team had victories in the Finals games, defeating Saint Mary’s 31-14 in the Cal Poly Finals and Arizona 33-14 in the Treasure Island Cup Finals.

At this year’s PAC Rugby 7s, each participating team will send a squad, creating an eight-team tournament field. Cal will be part of Pool A along with Oregon, Utah and Stanford, while Pool B will consist of UCLA, Arizona, USC and Oregon State. Pool play takes place on the first day of the tournament, with the rising teams playing in the knockout rounds and cup final on the second day. Cal’s schedule for day one is below.

Saturday, November 12:

10:30 a.m. – Cal vs. Stanford
1:00 p.m. – Cal vs. Utah
3:10 p.m. – Cal vs. Oregon

Cal will send a 13-man roster to represent the Blue & Gold in the conference championships. The following student athletes will qualify for the Bears.
Alex Aguero
Alex Brundage
Max Clark
Mack fell
Luke Freiman
Joe Kirsten
Oliver Neuall
Kealan O’Connell
Rand Santos
Max Schumacher
Kaleb Tomasin
Solomon Williams
Nathan Zylstra

The diverse roster is made up of five underclassmen, including three freshmen. second grader Kealan O’Connell has played an outstanding 7s season so far, made 9 tries and 19 conversions in 2022 and was named Tournament MVP at the Treasure Island 7s. Junior Kaleb Tomasin also took the spotlight this fall, contributing eight tries this season, crowned by his hat-trick in a match against UC Davis at the Treasure Island tournament.

Co-Captain Schumacher u Nathan Zylstra will also compete for the Bears this weekend. Zylstra will return from injury reserves while Schumacher tries to add to his four tries and three conversions from the previous sevens tournaments.

“This is our last performance of the autumn, so we are ready to give everything we have,” said Schumacher. “Our main goal is to improve our performance at Treasure Island and reach our full potential, but beyond that we want to play as a unit and stick to the existing systems.”

Fans can follow the Bears on Twitter for live updates on the PAC Rugby 7s Championship.

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