Week 6 Recap: Upsets Run Rife Through the Competition

D1A Rugby: Week 6 Recap: Upsets Run Rife Through the Competition
Photo Credit: Keith Killeen
It was a pivotal weekend across D1A, as several upsets were seen across the weekend and teams continue to surge towards conference championships.

In a clash of powerhouses in Rugby East, Notre Dame College hosted Kutztown for a hard-fought match on Saturday. Kutztown defeated the Eagles 27-10 fueled by an impressive defensive effort by the Golden Bears.

Notre Dame College head coach Jason Fox was impressed by the complete team effort he saw Kutztown bring against his side, “Kutztown played a very unselfish, team oriented game that kept us on our heals all game… they played with very good structure on both sides of the ball.”

Coach Fox went on to say certain aspects of his team’s defense would lead to more opportunities for Kutztown during the game, “defensive structure was good, however, we tackled too high and they won the point of contact many times going forward with the ball.” After this loss the Falcons now sit second in Rugby East, five points behind an undefeated #6 Army side.

In the other Rugby East Match this weekend, #5 Penn State remained undefeated this year after taking down St. Bonaventure. Penn State won 50-15 and move to 3-0 on the season. St. Bonaventure it was a tough loss for the Bonnies, who haven’t found the results they’d been hoping for back in August.

In Big Ten action another upset was seen when, #14 Indiana travelled to take on #19 Wisconsin. It was the Badgers who came away with the 40-24 win. This is signals a major shift in the tide for Big Ten rugby, as this is the first game Indiana has lost in conference for over four years. Wisconsin is now the team to beat in the Big Ten and look to have put the rest of the D1A competition on notice. Minnesota was shut out by Michigan State 33-0, putting Michigan State in second place behind Wisconsin. Ohio State travelled to Illinois and was leading 10-3 at the half before thunder and lightning at the school forced Illinois administrators to suspend the match after only one half.

In the lone conference crossover match of the week, #8 Navy travelled to take on Air Force for the Shea Cup. The Shea Cup is played for yearly between Navy and Air Force, and is named after the late Lt Col Kevin Shea. Shea played rugby at Air Force before going on to teach and coach rugby at the Navy. Lt. Col Shea paid the ultimate sacrifice for his country while serving in Iraq in 2004. Navy came away with a hard-fought victory over Air Force 38-22.

# 7 BYU put up the biggest score line of the week, shutting out Wyoming 113-0. BYU had plenty of try scorers in the game, with 11 different players crossing to score at least once in the game. Flanker Sean Tarawhiti lead the way with four ties on the day, while fullback Connor Parry racked up 33 points by way of a try and 14 conversions. In other Rocky Mountain action Colorado lost to Colorado State 5-18.

Oklahoma travelled to Texas in a Red River matchup on Saturday. The Sooners beat Texas 32-3. While it was a tight match in the first half, with Oklahoma leading 8-3, Oklahoma was able to pad their lead in the second half, scoring 24 unanswered points against Texas.

University of Notre Dame continued their independent schedule this week against Wheeling Jesuit. In a close and low scoring match Notre Dame pulled through with a 12-7 win of Wheeling Jesuit.

Iona travelled to Fordham Friday night for a battle between two undefeated sides in the Liberty’s I-95 division. Iona were lead to victory by 8-man Santi Mascolo, who scored 22 points in the game via two tries and six conversions. Iona beat Fordham 57-15 and secured their spot atop the I-95 division. Elsewhere, in the Liberty Conference Delaware beat hosts Rutgers 31-15 off the back of a three try game by captain and scrumhalf Luke Persanis. Syracuse remained undefeated, toping Cortland 24-3 to regain first place in the Empire division of the Liberty Conference. Boston College won at home against Northeastern 36-17, UMass defeated UConn 50-3; Faifield beat Tufts 29-12; Rhode Island lost at Stony Brook 39-49; Oswego upset an undefeated Albany side 24-12; and Binghamton shutout Brockport 26-0, remaining undefeated this season.