Playing the field: Charlotte Royals prep for Bingham Cup, Roller Girls fight hard and softball begins

Match-ups from across the Carolinas

All dressed up and someplace to go:
The Charlotte Royals are playing tough
on their way to the Bingham Cup in England in June.

Rugby

Momentum. That’s what the Charlotte Royals now have going into the Bingham Cup during the first weekend of June, by avenging two early season losses. The mid-April clash between the Royals and the Nashville Grizzlies was a rematch of the third-place game from the St. Louis Spring Invitational Tournament last month, which Nashville won 35-22. This time around, however, the Royals were able to get out to an early two-try lead and were able to maintain that advantage until the final whistle, winning 27-15. Scoring for Charlotte were backs Thomas Southerland and BJ Smith and for the forward, David June, who earned man of the match honors.

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On Cinco de Mayo, the Royals took on the Columbus Coyotes for the second game of their home series. Earlier this season, the Royals traveled to Columbus and lost, giving the Coyotes their first and only win of the season. Determined to defend their home turf, Charlotte put the pressure on early, scoring 6 tries in the first half to Columbus’ 1 try. By forcing turnovers and aggressive tackling, the Royals’ defense stood out, which limited their opponents to only the one first-half try and nothing after. BJ Smith had an outstanding game at scrum half, earning man of the match honors after racking up 4 tries and numerous assists. Also with multiple scores for the backs were Zach Anderson and Thomas Southerland. Scoring for the forwards were Coty Webb and J.T. Wentz, who earned man of the match honors, as well.

These two wins are a good sign that the Royals might be peaking at just the right time, because up next for the team is the Bingham Cup. The international tournament starts June 3rd in Manchester, England. To show their gratitude for anyone and everyone who helped make this trip possible, the Charlotte Royals Rugby Football Club will be hosting an Auxiliary Appreciation/Bingham Cup Sendoff party on May 19 at Sidelines Sports Bar. Check them out on Facebook at facebook.com/groups/27609515058 or visit charlotteroyals.org for more information.

Roller Girls

May 5 was a big sports weekend here in the Queen City with the Charlotte Roller Girls All-Stars and B-Dazzlers also taking on formidable opponents. The evening started with B-Dazzlers going against Star City out of Roanoke, Va. Star City was coming off a hard fought win in Greensboro and they maintained that determination by holding off a late rally from Charlotte to win the bout 137-108.

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The All-Stars were more fortunate by getting out to an early, but slim lead over the Little City Roller Girls from Johnson City, Tenn. The slender advantage made for a very competitive and tense match with the All-Stars coming out on top 147-118. Bomb Shelly from Star City had this to say after the bout, “The entire evening was so exciting! Charlotte definitely trains their girls to be some of the best competitors around.” Be sure to come out and see what she is talking about at Charlotte’s next home match on June 9 and check them out on Facebook at facebook.com/CharlotteRollerGirls or visit charlotterollergirls.com for more information.

Softball

The Carolina Softball Alliance’s season has gotten off to an exciting start with five teams vying for the league championship. About halfway through the season, Sidelines looks like the team to beat, getting out to an impressive 5-0 start. Pride and Hartigan’s are battling for second place right now with 3-1 and 2-3 records, respectively. Looking to turn things around in the second half, the Unity Conquerers and MCC need to improve on their 1-win totals. The league plays almost every Sunday at Veteran’s Park from 2-6 p.m. The league encourages anyone interested in softball to check out the league on Sundays and their Facebook page at facebook.com/1248909743 or visit carolinasoftball.org for more information. : :

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