Club day for Santa Monica starting for the men with the Kelp playing against Eagle Rock, who was in the 2nd division last season and was forced to play in division 4 because of not paying dues to the union. With numerous injuries, work, school commitments, last minute cancellations, players late to the game and a concert in the middle of the desert, The Kelp had to call upon old boys Kilian Kerwin, Daniel Beattie, John Ruud along with Clint Davis who has been playing all season.
The Kelp played Eagle Rock earlier in the season, at that match, the Kelp came out tentative and didn’t play a very physical game, losing by 50 points. The end result of this game was the same, but the commitment of the players putting themselves on the line, couldn’t have been more different. Even with the depleted numbers and forwards playing in the back line, the Kelp gave everything they had, making big tackles, notable from Davis, the ever improving Ryan Booker and Brendan Wallace who has consistently had a high tackle count all season.
For the first 7 minutes of the game the Kelp played almost entirely on defense, Eagle Rock became frustrated committing several penalties, with Santa Monica kicking it out of their red zone only to have Eagle Rock attack again. But playing defense that long is tiring and eventually Eagle Rock crossed the line. When the Kelp did get the ball, they moved forward meter by meter, string 5-6 phases at a time, driving Eagle Rock back, presenting good ball with ruckers on their heels, but there would just be one pass too many, causing a turnover, which Eagle Rock was very good at capitalizing on. In the second half, down by 40, with 3 more injuries, and no more reserves, even knowing the game couldn’t be won, the Kelp never gave up. NEVER. David Amaya, Jamie Facenda, Charlie Bonadiman and Badra Wilson continued to impress the coaches and played for the Barracuda in the following game after playing a full 80 minutes for the Kelp.