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Arizona State Pulls Off Big Win

College Men

Arizona State Pulls Off Big Win

J Dalton Photography.

Arizona State is back. The college program opened up its PAC Rugby Conference season with a 32-27 defeat of Utah Saturday, signalling perhaps a return to the level the Sun Devils enjoyed before a program suspension suffered a couple of years ago.

(Photos by J Dalton Photography, used with permission. Click on photos to enlarge)

While the journey is still ongoing, being able to beat a team such as Utah is a big milestone for Arizona State.

ASU got on the board first with a try from center Kyson Jester, converted by scrumhalf James Tarbatt. Utah replied with a try but Tarbatt added a penalty to keep the Utes behind at 10-5. Utah did tie it up with a try from No. 8 William Frantz, but ten minutes later Jester scored his second try to give the Sun Devils a 15-10 lead at the break.

Jester scored his third ten minutes into the second half and that, with Tarbatt's conversion, gave ASU a 12-point cushion at 22-10. Sub Weston Buckhannon went over to extend the ASU lead, and while Utah didn't give up and kept at it through the 80th minute (Levi Hunt scored at the end of the game), Arizona State held on 32-27.

This is the first PAC game, and so Arizona State leads the conference at 1-0. Clearly they are not favored to win it (Cal is), but ASU has already taken a step forward.