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Cal continued its dominance of the PAC Conference, dismantling UCLA 88-7 and USC 94-7 in a double header Saturday. In other action, Utah defeated Utah State 36-13 in a non-conference game.
After falling to UBC 50-6 last weekend, Cal bounced back with an emphatic win over rival UCLA. The Bears got on the board in the first minute through Kevin Sullivan and never looked back. In fact, Cal scored four tries in the first 15 minutes to take a 28-0 lead.
"We were really good in patches of play," said head coach Jack Clark, "but our best rugby is still inside us."
The dominance continued in the first half, with Cal scoring three more first half tries. The Bears nailed all seven first half conversions, with Russell Webb nailing six and Jamie Howells adding one more. In the scoring flurry, Jake Goena tallied a first half hat trick.
Cal scored the first four tries of the second half before Yoh Nakayama scored the lone UCLA try. The Bears added three more tries to complete an 88-7 win. In total, Cal had 13 tries, with10 different try scorers. Will Fuller managed two-second half tries in the victory.
Cal started a mix of younger players and upper classmen. As a team that traditionally gets better as the season goes on, these valuable minutes for young players with bode well for the Bears going forward.
"It's amazing to play with some of the older guys and get some reps with them, especially in a game like today," said the young flanker Patrick Hesse. "We started off well and kept the pressure on."
Cal continued the onslaught with its second side against USC. Winger Evan Coleman had a hat trick within 17 minutes.
The Bears led 41-7 at the break and added another 50 points in the second stanza in route to a convincing win.
Out in Utah, Utah University battled Utah Valley to a 36-13 victory. UVU scored first but the Utes managed to stem the tide and hold UVU off the board for the next 40 minutes. Despite the early score, it was a quality start for Utah. The Utes had not played a game in nearly three weeks, since last week’s game against Arizona State was cancelled due to disciplinary issues from ASU.
The struggles came more towards the end of the game for Utah. The Utes struggled with fitness and started making mistakes in the second half.
“After three weeks of not playing a competitive rugby game, we forgot just how long 80 minutes of rugby is. It was a bit surprising because I expected us to come out rusty but we didn’t we came out sharp and trailed off a bit in the second half,” said Utah coach Jon Law.
Utah, however, built a comfortable lead and only yielded one second half try to UVU.
“There was not moment where I felt the game was out of control or out of our hands. We were in control the whole way and scored very quickly after UVU took the lead,” Law added.
Utah will take on Utah State next week before battling Arizona in a winner take all match for the second spot in the PAC rugby conference.