Norwich Rugby Returns to Bermuda | USA Islanders Rugby Team

Norwich Rugby Returns to Bermuda

After a hiatus in 2018 and successful trips to the island of Bermuda in 2016 and 2017, the Norwich Cadets return to the Ariel Re Bermuda International 7s in 2019 stronger than ever.

The Vermont-based Cadets' island adventure will be their first time competing outdoors in 2019. "The team is looking forward to the experience of traveling and competing together this spring," reported Bob Weggler, Head Coach of Norwich Rugby. "We can't wait to take advantage of the beautiful weather in Bermuda to practice, it's a nice change of pace from chilly Vermont."

Returning to Bermuda  

Besides the nice weather and beaches Bermuda has to offer, the trip for Weggler is all about player development. For many of his players, Bermuda will be the first time they play 7s in college. "There is a wide variety of competition, from top to bottom. Bermuda is a nice opportunity to expose the players to other teams outside their skill level... The guys get a first impression of solid teams and the vast experience other schools bring to the field."

Bermuda is also an opportunity to build upon the tremendous 50 year culture of rugby at Norwich. "We’re not just there for the tournament," stated Weggler, who has been the Head Coach at Norwich for 18 years. "Our rugby program is based on the idea of building a culture rooted in politeness, toughness, integrity and winning. But winning is always last if we don’t develop as a team, there is no gratification behind our wins."

This year, Norwich is bringing both an A and B side to play in the tournament.

Norwich Legacy in Bermuda 

Norwich kicked off its spring 7s season at the inaugural Ariel Re Bermuda 7s in 2016. The Cadets went 0-3 against three high-level Division I programs in Dartmouth (36-5), Stony Brook (19-0) and Columbia (29-17). In the consolation bracket, Norwich rebounded with a 2-1 victory to finish in 10th Place out of 12 teams. The Cadets downed St. Joe's 26-5 in their first match of the day. They then moved on to defeat the Yale B side, winning 20-5. In their final match, the Cadets lost a hard-fought 19-10 match to the Dartmouth B side.

In 2017, the Cadets went 0-3 on opening day Pool Play of the tournament. Norwich fell 27-0 to Kutztown B in its first match of the day, then followed up with a 31-7 loss to the Bermuda All-Stars. The Cadets fell 19-14 in their final match of the day against the Univ. of Pennsylvania.

But the team finished strong on Day 2, going 2-1 to place 10th overall in the tournament. Norwich downed St. Joe's B team 14-10 in the first game of the day. They also won their second game with a 26-12 victory over the University at Albany. But Norwich dropped a tough 24-21 match to the University of Pennsylvania, ending the day with a nail biter.

Register for the 2019 Bermuda Intl 7s

2018 Bermuda International 7s

The 2019 Ariel Re Bermuda International 7s host the very best in high school and college rugby at the National Sports Centre, Bermuda’s premier sporting event venue. The March 15-16, 2019 tournament will feature mini teams (ages 9-12), high school teams, collegiate men's and women's sides.

Contact Stephen Siano, siano@urugby.com, 610-389-4474 for information regarding entering a team in 2020.