This Saturday the official bell rang declaring Indiana University top team in D1A Big Ten. Taking the field against Ohio State University, Indiana Hoosiers were ready to work hard to maintain their undefeated record and position themselves as a top ranking team heading into post-season matchups. 37-0 was the final score.
Indiana’s success was simple – hard work. “We began the season and told the guys that there is no secret to success,” says Indiana Head Coach Sarasopa Enari. “It’s about pulling through with the commitment and hard work. The technical stuff comes from myself and the coaching staff, but if it doesn’t come from [the players], we might as well go home.” Setting this attitude early on in the season has clearly done well and has permeated the ethos on the pitch, as Saturday’s match stood as proof.
The first half of the match brought Indiana to face the wind, providing a slight advantage to the Ohio State Buckeyes. With control, Indiana maintained strong scrums ultimately overpowering the smaller Buckeye pack. The half ended 15-0 for Indiana, Ohio doing their best to hold the Hoosiers at bay. “Their defense was absolutely outstanding,” said Ohio State Coach Tom Rooney. “That’s what really set the platform” heading into the second half.
Notable pack play was exhibited in the lock combination as well as with Isaac Hall as eight-man. Strength for the Hoosiers also came out in the back line with a deadly combination at inside and outside center. “Their two centers were huge and were creating some havoc,” says Rooney. “I can’t take anything away from them, they are on a roll right now.”
The Hoosiers kept up a fast pace, strong defense and moved the ball across the pitch, supporting individual player creativity that has proven successful throughout the entire season. A well-trained and organized rugby team that exhibits incredible fitness will make the magic happen. Here, the magic comes in the form of quick pace play, control in phases up the pitch, and a team full of excellent players that know how to work together. Coach Enari emphasized that it is necessary to have the hard work that supports such a vision of rugby. “The bottom line is, you need to work hard in everything you do. If you don’t, it won’t come your way. So that is what they experienced and they were willing to put in the work today and they enjoyed it.”
There is no secret in their sauce, just good old fashion hard work and dedication.