BERMUDA - The Norwich University men's rugby team won the Ariel Re Bermuda 7s tournament title on Saturday, going a perfect 6-0 in its third trip to the tournament in the last four years.
Junior Nathan Rolling (Taylorsville, Utah) scored six tries to lead the Norwich offense and earned tournament MVP honors. Junior Connor Miller (Sydney, Australia) had an impressive 7s debut, scoring four tries on the weekend.
Norwich went a perfect 3-0 on Friday in pool play, to earn the No. 3 seed for Saturday's single-elimination knockout bracket. The Cadets started Friday with a dominant 29-0 win over Colgate and then followed up with a dramatic, come-from-behind 19-14 victory over Rowan. NU closed the pool play round with a 15-10 victory over Chesapeake I.
The Cadets continued their impressive run on Saturday, defeating Chesapeake I 24-14 in the quarterfinal round. NU then upset No. 2 seed Ohio State 26-15 before taking down the No. 1 seed Bermuda Men's All-Stars 10-5 in the championship match.
Norwich (7-2-2) won the title in dramatic fashion after Bermuda was whistled for a penalty after a high tackle. The final horn signifying the last play of the game was sounded. Norwich decided to kick to touch for the lineout. The Cadets won the lineout and decided not to pass it out but to maul 15 meters as hooker Adam Schmitz (Chesterfield, Mo.) placed it down for the game-winning try to send the players and coaches pouring out onto the pitch.
The Gold team (2nd side) also competed, going 0-5 with one try scored by Mac Nagel (Lakewood, Ohio). The NU second side fell to Ohio St 36-5, Stony Brook 33-0 and Bermuda II 41-0. The Gold side also lost to Colgate II 31-0 and Rowan 54-0 on Saturday in the consolation bracket.
Norwich 29-Colgate 0
1st half Nate Rolling scored 2 tries, one converted by Connor Miller.
Halftime: NU 12- Colgate 0
Eli Henderson scores an unconverted try
Conner Miller scores an unconverted try
Austin Manhey scores a converted try
Final NU 29-0
Norwich 19-Rowan 14
Rowan scores two converted tries
Last play of half Conner Miller has a break away, gets tackled nearing the try line, off loads to Austin Manhey who places it down for the try. Miller converts.
Halftime: Rowan 14- NU 7
Nate Rolling scores and Miller converts to tie the game
NU 14-Rowan 14
Korbin Wayton scores the go-ahead try.
NU 19-Rowan 14
NU 19- Rowan 14
Norwich 15- Chesapeake 1 Selects 10
Chesapeake score two unconverted tries
Halftime: Chesapeake 10- Norwich 0
Will Rambin scores unconverted try
Chesapeake 10- NU 5
Mac Nagel scores
NU 10- Chesapeake 10
Last play of game Conner Miller pins his man to put Korbin Wayton through the whole, he bursts through and scores the try on the last play.
Nu 15- Chesapeake 10
NU 15- Chesapeake 10
Norwich 24- Chesapeake 1 Selects 14
Norwich jumps out to a 10-point lead with tries by Nate Rolling and Will Rambin
NU 10- Chesapeake 0
Halftime: NU 10 Chesapeake 0
Austin Manhey scores and Miller converts to boost the lead to 17-0
Chesapeake scores a converted try
NU 17- Chesapeake 7
Mac Nagel scores the fourth Cadet try, Miller conerts
Last play Chesapeake scores a converted try
NU 24-Chesapeake 14
Norwich 26- Ohio St 15
Norwich scores three tries in the first half
Miller scores and converts
Rolling scores and Miller converts
Halftime: Norwich 17-Ohio St 0
Ohio St scores and unconverted try
NU 17- Ohio St 5
Nate Rolling scores down the middle and Mac Nagel converts
NU 26-Ohio St 5
Ohio St score two late unconverted tries
Norwich 26- Ohio St 15
Norwich 10- Bermuda All Stars
Mac Nagel scores an unconverted try, Norwich plays a tenacious defense
Halftime: Norwich 5- Bermuda 0
Bermuda scores an unconverted try with two minutes left in the final
NU 5-Bermuda 5
Adam Schmitz scores game-winning try to win 10-5 on last play of game.
At the Ceremony
Norwich placed 10th in the its last two appearances in the Bermuda 7s tournament.
In addition to leading his team to victory, Rolling graciously accepted the Mark Dombroski tournament MVP presented by the American Consul General Dieman.
Ariel Re Bermuda 7's Cup Champions
2016 Dartmouth College
2017 Kutztown University
2018 Kutztown University
2019 Norwich University