September 28, 2014: By Chris Baker: This past weekend Fort Wayne’s Black and Blue made the short trip to Elkhart to take on Michiana with hopes of coming away with a victory. This was either the first time these teams played, or it had been awhile since they had, and  both teams were looking to make an impact in the division with a victory. The Michiana Moose were 2-0 going into the game while Fort Wayne was 1-1 and trying to recover from the week before loss to White River.

Veterans present for The Black and Blue were: Jim Burns, Jeremy Dunfee, Jeff Salamone, Matt Mangan, James Sendo, Wes Steele, Josh Boyanowski, Cody Casagrande, Ryan Day, Matt Brown, Kevin Hastings, Brian Werling, and Austin Fain. Newer players and rookies present were: Ben Bowden, Felipe Martinez, Taylor Serres, Nathan Strack, Ben Fuchs, Chris Ballard, Andrew Stephenson, Shane Trigg, Jordan Dahl, and Bear.

Fort Wayne arrived in force, looking for a win against a Moose team that had only had one try scored on them during the season. The game started and The Black and Blue were looking good controlling possession and moving forward with great running. Fort Wayne struck first and then struck again 15 minutes into the game. Things were going in the Black and Blue’s favor, but the Moose would strike back with tries and points of their own. Tough running and support were keys to the Black and Blues success early; the second half ended with the Moose ahead 12-17.

The second half started with Fort Wayne behind and kicking off. The Moose made the most of every opportunity and scored several tries quick, but the Black and Blue kept coming and did not fold under the pressure. Late into the second half Fort Wayne scored several tries making an effort to come back and putting pressure on the Michiana. When the final whistle had blow the score was 27-37 in favor of the Michiana Moose.

The game could best be described as struggle between the favorite of the division and team who is starting to find its identity, with the favorite coming out on top. The game was a full eighty minutes of balls to the wall rugby with neither team willing to give any ground to the other, it was really a great game to be a part of. Try scorers for the Black and Blue were: Matt Mangan with two, Josh Boyanowski with one, Kevin Hastings with one, and Brian Werling with one. Congrats to MIchiana, good luck and we will see ya next year in April.

The Black and Blue have taken a few steps forward and no it crucial that we do not take any steps back during the next two weeks. We played will in long spurts and got beat when we were tired. I think that we kind of got off track from the game plan during the second half, I didn’t think that we would lose the game coming back from halftime.

That being said, we did play well in both halves and we started to play like a team that wanted to win. We didn’t go into this game thinking that we deserved to win, which help us come out and score two tries quick in the first half, something that hasn’t happened in a while. We are coming together and we are playing as a team, I think that if we keep our egos in check like we did last week people should be afraid of us! Come to practice even though we don’t have a game this weekend, lets keep building for the future!

Bleed Black and Blue