Photos Austin Brewin. SFGG in green, Utah in hoops
The University of Utah’s trip to the Bay Area ended Saturday with a 58-19 loss to Super League champs San Francisco Golden Gate.
The Utes, which lost A- and B-side games to St. Mary’s on Friday, got some measure of consolation, as their Bs beat the SFGG DI club side 27-24 earlier in the day.
SFGG Head Coach Paul Keeler was pleased to see what is a relatively young team show well against the college players.
“Utah is a physical team,” said Keeler. “But physicality is one of the main differences between the college game and the men’s club game, so that didn’t necessarily faze us. I think Utah is probably better than their scores show, and when they get clicking in the backs and coordinate their forwards and backs more, they will be very tough.”
SFGG ran on some relatively new players, including former Cal standouts Tom Rooke and Drew Hyjer, both in the back row. The experience halfback combination of Volney Rouse and Mose Timoteo controlled the game well, while Opeti Okusi was “brilliant,” said the coach.
Looking ahead, SFGG will be folding in some more new college recruits, such as former Notre Dame All American lock Nick Civetta, and former Cal hooker Neil Barrett. Brendan Hardiman and Patrick Latu also figure strongly in the SFGG plans.
As for their 2nd side, SFGG moved up to DI, but it may not have been the right time, as the loss of several star players – Samu Manoa, Folau Niua, Chris Biller – to pro contracts, and with Mile Pulu out injured and Danny LaPrevotte not playing this year, their depth is already tested.