The Kutztown University Golden Bears came out victorious in a neck and neck conference match against the Penn State University Nittany Lions with a final score of 27-26.
Kutztown maintained consistent possession of the ball and controlled much of the first half, leading 17-6 at half time. Maintaining momentum, the Golden Bears secure two more tries, bring the tally to 27 points.
The last 14 minutes in the match were nail bitting. Penn State managed to gain possession and activate a barrage of offensive phases forcing the Golden Bears back on their heals. The Nittany Lions brought the ball over the try line for a corner try, not once but TWICE in a matter of minutes. Unfortunately for Penn State, those final two tries were not accompanied by conversion points brining the score to 27-26 leading into the final two minutes.
Kutztown won their own kickoff, winning the ball in the Penn State side of the field. The Golden Bears executed a series of pick-and-goes to run out the clock and – plot twist – Penn State managed to strip possession and hammer back up the field to bring Kutztown within 30 meters of their coveted try zone.
Ultimately while in close contact, the ball popped out of Penn State possession, crossing the touchline to end this humdinger 20 minutes of play, wrapping up a spirited match in the East.
Golden Bear tries came from sophomore Robert Stortz who contributed two tries, flanked by Bruce Dolan and Gareth Lourens each securing one. Two conversions were made, and one penalty kick by Dolen to round out Kutztown’s 27 points of the match.
“Looking back the kids did really great,” says Head Coach Gregg Jones. “In those last minutes PSU came at us with 100% and really turned it on to hammer in some strong rugby.”
With two strong weekends of rugby under their belt, Golden Bears prospects are looking up as D1-A Week 5 is upon us. Kutztown has a bye weekend and Penn State reassert themselves against the Wheeling Jesuits in West Virginia with a 2:00pm kick off.