Eleven Golden Bears scored a total of 16 tries as California notched its sixth shutout of the spring in a victory over Arizona State Saturday on Witter Rugby Field to commence PAC Rugby Conference play.
Fullback Jake Anderson ended the afternoon leading all scorers with 18 points on 9-for-12 conversion kicking before freshman Russell Webb finished the kicking duties with 3-of-4 conversions. Sophomore Andrew Battaglia had a hat trick, followed by a trio of two-try scorers in captain Seamus Kelly, prop J.P. Hurrell and replacement forward Danny Barrett, who recorded his first playing minutes of the year.
Another first of the spring for Cal (7-0/1-0) on Saturday was the start made by All-America lock Brendan Daly. "We did what we set out to do and it feels good," he said. "We set out to play a full 80 minutes, which I thought we did."
Staying true to their defensive pattern, the Bears repelled the Sun Devils on the several occasions that ASU (1-1/0-1) breached the gainline on Saturday, a positive sign as Cal heads into the second half of its seven-match homestand..
After a frosh-soph lineup clashes with Cal Maritime on Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m., the Bears face Cal Poly on Saturday, Feb. 9, at 2 p.m. before the British Columbia Thunderbirds arrive for the opening match of the "World Cup" series. While the Bears have won by wide margins so far this spring, they enter these next three matches well aware that the Mustangs defeated Cal, 22-20, last Feb. 25, one week after the Bears eked out a 13-12 against the Thunderbirds on Treasure Island.
"Their team looks good," said ASU head coach Gary Lane. "As a representative of the PAC, we'll be rooting for Cal this year to achieve the highest possible accolades." Of the inaugural season for the PAC Rugby Conference, Lane said, "There's only good things that come out of this. It's programs like Cal, Utah, Arizona, Arizona State, UCLA and Oregon State that can lead to great things and I hope that other schools can join us."
The Team vs. Arizona State
15. Anderson (Coquillard @ 65:00), 14. Battaglia, 13. Kelly ©, 12. Okusi (Quimson @ 68:00), 11. Dunne, 10. Webb, 9. Bosco (Boyer @ 58:00), 1. Mohr (Walsh @ 55:00), 2. O'Beirne (De Nysschen @ 52:00), 3, Hurrell (C. Fry @ 63:00), 4. Coleman, 5. Daly, 6. Bush, 7. Gletzer (Barrett @ 40:00), 8. Chehade