LSU, Tech win easily; Oklahoma moves to 3-0

D1A Rugby: LSU, Tech win easily; Oklahoma moves to 3-0

BOULDER, Colo. – The Red River Conference re-launched its season with three Jan. 30 matches. Included in the slate of games was LSU’s inaugural Red River contest, which the Tigers won easily, and Oklahoma moving to 3-0 after its win over Texas A&M.

Texas Tech 42 – 19 Texas
In a surprise start to the match, the visiting Longhorns dominated the opening 25 minutes and raced out to a 19-0 lead. Apparently, the Red Raiders only needed one score to completely swing the momentum.

Gonzalo Eizmendi put Tech on the board with a try in the 30th minute that the scrum half would convert himself, and flanker Darien Scruggs dotted down to close the half and put the Red Raiders within five points of Texas at intermission.

The first 30 minutes of the second half saw a grudge match take place, with neither side willing to budge. A yellow card sent a Longhorn off the pitch, and enabled the floodgates to open for Texas Tech’s attack.

A penalty try followed by a trio of scores from Robert Flinn, Abubakar Sule, and Michael McCabe would close the match in an offensive flurry for the Red Raiders. Eizmendi’s stroke from the tee was deadly accurate, converting all six of his opportunities.

Next week, Tech hits the road to play TCU, while Texas is off until Feb. 13 when it hosts LSU.

 

LSU 52 – 7 TCU
Louisiana State’s first-ever Red River fixture quickly turned into the Todd Dupre and Jeff Mauras show. The eight man and outside center, respectively, combined for seven tries, as the Tigers proved far too strong for the Horned Frogs.

Prop Christian Brower and flanker Brennan Flacon also got beyond the end line in the first half to pad LSU’s halftime lead, 27-0. Lock and team president Zach Stratton would add to the scoring affair in the second half.

By the time Ryan Wallace got TCU on the board the damage had already been done. Scrum half Dillon Thiele’s successful conversion split the uprights with only seconds remaining and LSU in command, 52-7.

The 20th-ranked Tigers won’t be on the pitch until Feb. 13 when they head to Austin, Tex., to face the Longhorns. After playing their first two conference matches of the season outside of the state of Texas, the Horned Frogs will host Texas Tech Feb. 6.

 

Oklahoma 31 – 19 Texas A&M
The Sooners prevailed in a back-and-forth match against Red River 7s Champion Texas A&M.

The home teams drew first blood when Aggie winger Gilberto Arpero nabbed a try in the fifth minute. A battle over territory ensued over the next 25 minutes until Oklahoma’s Manny Soto leveled the score at five-all.

Just when it appeared the first half would conclude with a tie score, fly half David Wallace converted his own try just before the first 40 came to a close to put the Sooners up, 12-5.

Oklahoma would extend its lead to 17-5 when Logan Ronan found the try zone, but it didn’t take long for A&M to storm back. Converted tries from Philip Hanson and Ross Navarro returned the lead to the Aggies by the 55th minute.

Wallace, who has scored no fewer than 15 points in each of the Sooners’ first three conference matches, slotted three consecutive penalty goals to put his side up by seven points. Oklahoma would add another five-pointer for good measure, and head back to Norman, Okla., with a 31-19 victory.

Oklahoma will put its 3-0 mark on the line against Baylor this weekend, and A&M will seek its first conference win against that same Baylor squad a week later.