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LADY BULLDOGS CHEWING UP COMPETITION

The Okkodo Lady Bulldogs have emerged as one of the top teams in the 2016 season. Saturday’s performance left a lot of positives, but also areas where the team can improve with a championship in their sights.

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By Rob Leon Guerrero

IIAAG high school rugby action continued at Wettengel Rugby Field in Dededo this weekend, where the Okkodo Lady Bulldogs , despite playing strong in their opening game, gave an uneven performance. After a sound victory over the Tiyan Titans, the Bulldogs came out flat against JFK and only managed one score on their way to a draw.

The Bulldogs have been steadily building their rugby program under former Guam national player Tiffany Tallada, and Andrea Gera.

“Our team is very close,” Gera said, “we always coach them to think of each other.”

In sevens rugby, with the limited number of players on the field, that chemistry can create a strong foundation for team performance, as well as a stepping stone for the younger players to grow in the sport.

The Bulldogs’ comradery is something that has transcended the field, as the team maintains close bonds away from the game. “Overall… this team is a close family,” Tallada said, “they play with heart.” A strong point for Tallada’s coaching success has been her support of the players, an attitude that carries throughout the squad. “I tell the girls that as long as they play their best, we can take the loss,” she said.

In the opening match against Tiyan, Leeza Vahilig raced 60 meters out of a scrum for an early try. From there, the Bulldogs defense lived up to the image of their team name, as they hounded their opponents and bit off every chance they could. Jacia Vita and Caitlyn Cabrera each created scoring opportunites from their tackles, poaching the ball and giving senior winger Celine Amparo room to score. Despite a yellow card, the Bulldogs maintained composure and finished with a final score of 20-0 against the Titans.

In their second game, the Bulldogs appeared uncharacteristically flat and, despite a fine score from Amparo, only managed a draw with the JFK Islanders.

Amparo, a 4-player player under Tallada has echoed her coach’s message to the team. “We just try to communicate with each other… to stay on the same level and help each other out,” she said, “we have a great bond off the field.”

“Celine’s been a great player for me for the last four years,” Tallada spoke of her captain, continuing on highlight Amparo as a very smart player who’s leadership is felt throughout the team.

Tuesday February 9, 2016
5:20pm – GW 0, Okkodo 10 – Boys Junior Varsity
5:40pm – St. John 12,  FD 5 – Boys Junior Varsity
6:00pm – Southern 17, Sanchez 0 – Boys Junior Varsity
6:20pm – St. Paul 17, JFK 24 – Boys Junior Varsity
6:40pm – FD 10, GW 10 – Boys Junior Varsity
7:00pm – Okkodo 17, Sanchez 10 – Boys Junior Varsity
7:20pm – St. John 31, JFK 0 – Boys Junior Varsity
7:40pm – Southern 15, St. Paul 10 – Boys Junior Varsity

Thursday February 11, 2016

5:20pm – GW 10, Acaademy 5 – Girls Junior Varsity
5:40pm –  ND 12, Southern 5 – Girls Junior Varsity
6:00pm – Okkodo 20, JFK 0 – Girls Junior Varsity
6:20pm – Acaademy 0, Southern 0 – Girls Junior Varsity
6:40pm – Sanchez 15, JFK 0 – Girls Junior Varsity
7:00pm – ND 10, Okkodo 10 – Girls Junior Varsity
7:20pm – Southern 7, GW 5 – Girls Junior Varsity
7:40pm – Acaademy 0, Okkodo 24 – Girls Junior Varsity
8:00pm – Sanchez 0, ND 12 – Girls Junior Varsity

Saturday February 13, 2016

8:30am – Academy 5, JFK 0 – Girls Varsity
9:00am – Academy 5, GW 31 – Girls Varsity
9:15am – Southern 12, GW 7 – Boys Varsity
10:30am – Tiyan 0, JFK 32 – Boys Varsity
11:45pm – Okkodo 27, Sanchez 12 – Boys Varsity
1:00pm – Guam High 5, FD 52 – Boys Varsity
2:20pm – Guam High 17, Sanchez 5 – Girls Varsity
2:40pm – ND 19, Southern 5 – Girls Varsity
3:00pm – Okkodo 20, Tiyan 0 – Girls Varsity
3:20pm – GW 36, Guam High 0 – Girls Varsity
3:40pm – Tiyan 0, Southern 26 – Girls Varsity
4:00pm – ND 19, Sanchez 0 – Girls Varsity
4:20pm – Okkodo 5, JFK 5 – Girls Varsity
4:40pm – ND 42, Guam High 5 – Girls Varsity
5:00pm -Tiyan 0, Sanchez 19 – Girls Varsity
5:20pm – Southern 24, JFK 12 – Girls Varsity

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Since forming the GNYFF in 2009, the league has never gone without a season until 2020. The league announced their plans to cancel the 2020 season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

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RIP: Former Guam football player Phil Mendiola, shown here with son Tano, passed away in Las Vegas due to a heart attack. Mendiola played for numerous Guam teams from youth to varsity. He was 39.
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Morgan McKenna (left with black face mask) poses for a photo with Guam Football Association Technical Director Sang Hoon Kim (seated, with blue face mask) and Guam Football Association Assistant Technical Director Ross Awa (standing) after signing his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference.

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