Goff Rugby Twitter     Goff Rugby Facebook

Arizona State Leads PMC South

irish rugby tours

Arizona State Leads PMC South

No. 8 Baylee Hawk's try awarded Arizona State the bonus point in the win. (Photo: Arizona State Women's Rugby)

Arizona State (2-0) now leads the Pacific Mountain South after its 40-5 win over in-state rival Arizona (0-2). It was the only game to occur in the DI women’s college conference last weekend, as UC San Diego (1-0) and UC Santa Barbara (0-1) postponed their match.

Playing on Dave Sitton field, the hosts got up 5-0 within the first minute of play, as Saleiha Mayer-Marks dotted down for Arizona. The remaining 79 minutes were not be as fruitful for the Wildcats, which failed to add to its point total after that game-opening score.

Arizona State prop Whitney Diem had something to do with Arizona’s drought. The senior was an unstoppable force, who pummeled the defense for three tries on the day. Diem’s first score might have been the most important: Two minutes after Arizona lit up the scoreboard, the prop rumbled over for the tying points, 5-5, calming the immediate momentum that the Wildcats had enjoyed.

The Tucson side did well to disrupt ASU’s flow for the next 20 minutes, as the Sun Devils struggled to convert on its advantageous territory. But finally, in the 27th minute, Diem came to the rescue again, scoring the go-ahead points, 10-5.

From that moment on, every point was padding. Right before half, Abigail Posten dotted down for the 15-5 lead. Two minutes after the break, No. 8 Baylee Hawk scored the bonus-point try. The back three of fullback Kara Zardeneta and wings Brianna Brossard and Amber Przyborki accounted for the next three tries during the subsequent 20 minutes, 35-5. And rightfully so, Diem sealed the day’s scoring with her third try in the 74th minute, 40-5.

"It was one of the first games in a long time that we all played together,” ASU captain Mikayla Gilbert credited team chemistry with the win. “[We displayed] such a level of trust in one another."

Next Sunday, ASU will host UC Santa Barbara, a team the Sun Devils beat 34-18 in the league opener. The true challenge will occur the following weekend, when Arizona State contests its Californian double-header on the road: UC San Diego on Feb. 7, and UCLA on Feb. 8.

Arizona State 2 0 0 74 23 51 2 10
UC San Diego 1 0 0 41 5 36 1 5
UCLA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
UCSB 0 1 0 18 34 -16 0 0
Arizona 0 2 0 10 81 -71 0 0