U.S. Army athletes are back in contention for the Armed Forces Championship title as Armed Forces Sports returns after a 16-month layoff due to COVID-19.
The second Armed Forces Women’s Rugby Championship was held alongside the Cape Fear 7 Rugby Tournament in Wilmington from June 25-27. Five service branches competed in the round robin as Army took first place and defended their 2019 title with a 4-0 record in the Armed Forces’ first championship since the pandemic.
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The Marines got off to a good start by handing the Coast Guard a 25-0 loss before defeating the Navy 38-0 on Friday. On Saturday, the Marines lost two close games to Army 5-0 and Air Force 14-5 to close out Armed Forces 2-2 for third place.
Maj. Stephanie Iacobucci of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton and Lance Cpl. Ubaida Ahmed of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point was named to the Armed Forces Tournament Team.
“As a team that came together in the space of a week and a half, we did pretty well,” said Ahmed, who is an aviation electronics mechanic with the Air Transport Squadron. maritime aerial resupply 252. “On the second day we had some setbacks, but we never gave in and played until the last whistle.
On Sunday, the Marines went 1-1 in the Cape Fear 7 Women’s Club Division to end the weekend 3-3.
U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Alan Mcalister, Head Coach of the All-Marine Women’s Rugby Team, is passionate about the correlation between sport and the military.
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“It’s a battle of wills, a battle of possession, a battle of time (and) a battle of space,” Mcalister said. “That’s all we tie into the fight.”
Sport is a crucial part of the service for Mcalister, who says competition is a way to mentally reset, network and interact with other staff.
“You have lance corporals who are counseled on life by majors who play together, and that allows them to really open up and connect on a personal level,” Mcalister said.
The Armed Forces Men’s Rugby Championship is scheduled for August 19-23 in Glendale, Colorado.
Journalist Calvin Shomaker can be reached by email at [email protected]