BOULDER, Colo. – Rugby has been heating up across the country, with teams in the Big Ten and Rugby East having matches week in, week out. The West has had a few games since late September, but it wasn’t until this past weekend that the competition is starting to beef up. Two West matches took place this weekend, and with two matches a week through October and early November, the West looks to get interesting quickly.
No. 12 Air Force vs. Wyoming
Air Force started its first West match of the season against a 1-1 Wyoming side, and started it off right. The Zoomies scored a try within the opening minute of the game, and would go on to take this one, 55-30.
Wyoming responded to the early deficit with a try of its own, tying the match, 7-7, in the eighth minute. In the next 10 minutes, the Cowboys gave up two penalty kicks and a try to the Falcons, handing Air Force the 18-7 lead. Wyoming recovered in the final 10 minutes of the half with a try and a penalty kick, but let up one more try to Air Force, and entered the half down, 23-15.
Air Force took over the match in the second half. Other than a penalty kick from Wyoming, Air Force shut the Cowboys down while scoring four tries of its own. Wyoming tried to make a rally in the last 20 minutes, scoring two tries on the Falcons, but Air Force was able to hold off the attack and sent the Cowboys back to Laramie with a loss.
Air Force regained a little bit of its confidence after it lost some in the 28-0 defeat to Navy. The Zoomies will need it when they face a hungry Colorado State side, which is in search of its first win of the season.
No. 18 Colorado vs. New Mexico
The Luke Gross era at Colorado has started off in great fashion, improving to 2-0 on the season after a 88-10 trouncing of New Mexico.
The Buffs kept New Mexico off the board for the entire first half, while Colorado had no problem finding the try zone, scoring 11 tries in the first half. The game was a rout by the time halftime came, Colorado pummeling New Mexico, 69-0.
Colorado subbed out a third of its starting lineup at halftime, which afforded New Mexico the ability to score a try and a drop goal, but the Buffs proved to be too much in the second half, as well, scoring three tries of their own. New Mexico is a young team trying to build a culture of good rugby, and were simply not ready to compete against this Colorado side.
Colorado faces one of its biggest challenges of the season next week when the Buffs face No. 6 Utah in Glendale, Colo. on Saturday.