For Immediate Release, March 26, 2011
Contact: Matt Birch, (702) 271-6945
The University of Arizona’s rugby team (No. 7 WeAreRugby.com, No. 10 Rugby Magazine) resumed their rivalry with the #12 Arizona State Sun Devils on Saturday night in Tempe. The Wildcats were defeated 38-15 at ASU’s Soccer Stadium, in the USA Rugby Game of the Week.
This was the first ever CPD game between Arizona and ASU, however the two schools had previously been conference foes until the 2008 season. The loss moves the Wildcats record to 1-1 in the CPD West Division and 8-2 overall for the season. This was the second meeting of the season between ASU and the Wildcats this season, with the Arizona earning a 25-24 non-conference victory on December 4 in Tucson.
Dating back to the 1996 season, Arizona had previously won 13 consecutive conference games against Arizona State until Saturday night. However, Arizona still leads the all time series 49-15-1.
“They simply outplayed us,” Arizona head coach Dave Sitton said.
Arizona started five freshman in this contest and were without star player Peter Tiberio who joined the USA Sevens team this weekend in Hong Kong. Tiberio scored a try earlier in the day for the United States in their game against England.
The Sun Devils got on the scoreboard first with try by Augie Steinbeck, and took an early 5-0 lead. Mike Getzler got Arizona on the board with a penalty kick to cut the score to 5-3. ASU’s Adam Sandstrum responded with a penalty kick of his own to extend the Sun Devil lead. Midway through the half, Getzler was a given a yellow card, and the Wildcats were forced to play a man down at 15 on 14 for ten minutes. ASU did not score while they had the one man advantage, however Sandstrum would later add another kick to give ASU an 11-3 lead at halftime.
Sandstrum opened the second half scoring for the Devils with his third penalty kick of the day. Getzler responded for Arizona with a try and the conversion kick, to cut the ASU lead to 4 points. That was the closest that the Wildcats would get, as ASU posted three straight tries from Joe Zurek, Rashad Slean and Zach Utley. Stevie Johnson added a drop goal for ASU to give the Sun Devils their biggest lead of the game at 38-10. Andrew Lundahl added a late try for Arizona in the final minutes to close out the scoring.
Earlier in the afternoon, Arizona and ASU’s “A” squads faced off with the Wildcats topping the Sun Devils by a score of 20-12.