CATS IN TO QUARTERFINALS AFTER CRC DAY ONE
Matt Rogers and Zach Heisterkamp played key roles in the 3-0 day one for the Wildcats. (Photo credit: Jack Megaw)
June 2- Arizona took the field today for their final tournament of the season, kicking off their Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship campaign with pool play in Philadelphia.
Arizona opened their day against Boston College, taking on the Eagles for the first time in their history and starting well, jumping to an early 7-0 lead on a Ben Joseph try that was quickly added to by Ryan Hudson to start the Wildcats off. In the second half Matt Rogers put on a fine display, scoring two more tries to give him a hat trick in addition to a Ben Scoular score to make it 36-7 and move the Cats to 1-0.
The Wildcats continued the trend of starting well against the Hoosiers, as Ryan Hudson's linebreak set up Ben Joseph's first minute try before Jonah Eldridge got the Wildcats to 10-0 just three minutes in. Another try by Joseph sent the teams in to the break with a 15-0 Arizona lead. In the second half, Matt Rogers and Jonah Eldridge tries finalized the win and a 2-0 record for the Wildcats.
In their final match of the day, the Wildcats took on South Carolina with a spot in the cup quarterfinals in reach for the team. In the third match, Freshman George Niethammer was the one to start Arizona off, touching down in the right corner for his first career CRC try before Garrett Walker scores on both sides of halftime got the Wildcats in firm position. Dante Weeks made his presence felt to put a stamp on the win, scoring twice in the final two minutes to lock up a 31-7 victory and clinch Pool B.
The strong day one was a great sign for the Wildcats as they aim to bring home their first CRC title, but there is much left to do with strong match ups across the quarterfinals for day two. The Wildcats end the day as the #2 overall seed and draw Iona, taking on the Gaels at 10:05 AM on ESPN 2. Be sure to tune in or follow the Wildcats on Twitter at @azwildcatrugby.
GAME ONE vs BOSTON COLLEGE
Arizona 36-7 Boston College
Tries: M. Rogers (3), Hudson, Joseph, Scoular
Conv: M. Rogers- 2/5, Walker- 1/1
GAME TWO vs INDIANA
Arizona 27-0 Indiana
Tries: Joseph (2), Eldridge (2), M. Rogers
Conv: Eldridge- 1/3, M. Rogers- 0/2
GAME THREE vs SOUTH CAROLINA
Arizona 31-7 South Carolina
Tries: Walker (2), Weeks (2), Niethammer
Conv: Eldridge- 3/5