Cody Schaeffer lays a huge open field hit against his UBC Thunderbirds opponent while playing for the Meraloma Rugby Club in Vancouver last year. (Jason Scherr photo)

Prince Rupert rugby player at Utah tournament

Cody Schaeffer has strong showing at North American Invitational

Prince Rupert’s Cody Schaeffer participated in the North American Invitational 7s earlier this month, putting in a series of strong showings for Ontario side Upright Rugby at the tournament in Utah.

Schaeffer normally would be suiting up for the Celtic Barbarians, but the organization was unable to field enough players for a U-20 Boys team. Not wanting to see Schaeffer have to sit on the sidelines, Barbarians coach Cam Wilton put him in touch with Upright Rugby director Tyler Leggatt, who was more than happy to take Schaeffer on.

The tournament started off well, with Upright winning their first game 35-0 over Gorilla Rugby. Their following match of the group stage saw them suffer a tight loss 14-12 to the Tsunami Misfits.

“It was a close game that was really hard fought, but we got sucked into their play style instead of playing our game,” Schaeffer said.

READ MORE: Schaeffer brings his rugby game south

Schaeffer competed for the Celtic Barbarians at the Tropical 7s tournament in Orlando earlier this year. (Jason Scherr photo)

The next game of the group stage came against Rhino Rugby Academy. It was another close match, but this time Schaeffer’s team would come out on top 22-19. Upright would book their ticket into the semi-final with a final group stage victory against the Stars 7s team by a score of 34-21.

“We all kind of took that first loss to heart and stepped up our game,” Schaeffer explained. “The next games we played our way, and we didn’t let our opponents manipulate us into doing what they wanted.”

READ MORE: Awards night at Charles Hays for Rainmakers rugby squad

The semi-final matchup pitted Upright in a rematch against Rhino Rugby. Unfortunately for Schaeffer’s squad, this time their opponent came out ready and rolled to a 38-12 win.

“It was tough to take a loss against a team that we already beat,” Schaeffer said.

Upright Rugby would win their third place game 59-0 in a rematch vs the Stars 7s to end on a winning note. Schaeffer is now back in Vancouver preparing for the upcoming season on the Meraloma Rugby Club.

Alex Kurial | Sports Reporter
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