The Christendom Crusaders finished second at the NSCRO 15s Rugby National Championship, falling to repeat champion The Claremont Colleges in the final match. The Crusaders, who entered the final game as the #1 ranked team in the nation, fought hard, leaving it all on the field in front of Christendom fans who were present and watching the exciting game live online.
The Crusaders traveled to Albany, New York, for their first 15s National Championship, after winning the 7s National Championship in 2016. They started the weekend with a rout on Friday, defeating Endicott College, the #2 ranked team in the nation, 60-17. Led by Thomas Audino, who flew back from his semester abroad studying in Rome just for the games, Owen Kennedy, and others, the team looked strong, locking down a chance to win the ultimate prize on Sunday.
The Claremont Colleges offered a significant challenge to the Crusaders, after winning the 15s National Championship in 2018. The team proved to be too much of a match, with Claremont ultimately winning 57-17. Many Christendom fans made the trek to New York to cheer on the Crusaders, and the team made sure to acknowledge their support at the end of the game, before closing with a traditional prayer.
Despite coming up short in the final match, the team still accomplished the best season in the history of the program. The Crusaders finished with the #1 ranking in the nation while also earning trips to two separate National Championships. Despite falling in this one, they will compete again in June for the 7s National Championship and the opportunity to bring home another trophy for the ever-growing Christendom trophy case.