WILDCATS JUNIOR VARSITY JUMPS ON LOPES TO START SEASON
Arizona JV 53
Grand Canyon University JV 0
Luke Vakasisikakala '20 and the Arizona Junior Varsity scored their first victory of the season on Saturday against Grand Canyon University.
Oct 3- Arizona's second side got their season kicked off this weekend, traveling to Phoenix to take on Grand Canyon University Junior Varsity.
After some strong defensive work to start the game, an Arizona scrum led to the Wildcats' first try and the first of two for Wing Hadleigh Tucker, as the speedster from Bermuda touched down for a try which fellow Wing Luke Thayer (14 points) converted to make it 7-0 early. Tucker was not the only two-try scorer on the day for the Wildcats, as a free kick in the scrum against GCU led to a quick tap try by Captain and Hooker Zach Biggs in the left corner to make it 14-0 just under 20 minutes in. Biggs struck again five minutes later, running a hard line off of Thayer to make it 21-0 Wildcats. "A strong start for a young group" said Head Coach Sean Duffy "simple stuff, trying to be profecient in set piece and attack from quality platforms." The final barrage of scoring came at the very end of the half, as a Zach Heisterkamp try was the first of two for the Flanker from Ohio before two Thayer penalties made it 34-0 at halftime.
In the second half, the Wildcats got continued production in the set piece and continued to apply good defensive pressure on the Lopes, as turnover ball led to some nice attacking play that saw Prop Cody Hunt set up Heisterkmp for his second score 46 minutes in. With both teams taking a look at additional players in the second half of the friendly, Arizona continued to play with a high tempo, with Tucker scoring his second of the day before reserve Wing/Center Luke Vakasisikakala touched down in the right corner 75 minutes in to seal the 53-0 victory.
With the side made up of mostly Freshmen, it was that highly touted group of young Wildcats that continued to impress the coaching staff with their effort and productivity. "Three guys scoring doubles in Biggs, Heisterkamp, and Tucker is nice, but all of the tries were a result of good team play, and that's a great sign" said Duffy "lots to improve on as it was far from clinical but they're excited to get better and we're excited to see them grow."
Arizona now moves on to the second match of a three-game October set for the Second XV, as they welcome Arizona State Junior Varsity to Tucson next weekend. Arizona Developmental Side will also return to action, facing off against Arizona State University's Academy Side following that match.
Tries: 7- Biggs (2), Heisterkamp (2), Tucker (2), Vakasisikakala
Coversions: Thayer- 4/4; Villalobos- 1/2; Brannon- 1/1
Penalties: Thayer- 2/2