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Penn State Edges Kutztown in Wild One

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Penn State Edges Kutztown in Wild One

The Rugby East saw plenty of drama this weekend as Penn State had to claw back to beat Kutztown 33-30.

Penn State started strong but then Kutztown stormed past. The Penn State players didn't panic, however, stuck to their pattern and started to score tries.

"I am very proud of how the team played and showed some real grit at the end," said Penn State Head Coach Justin Hundley. "I think they showed some really good composure for a young team."

Noah Smith, Campbell Halloran, Aidan King, Giancarlo Nastasi, and Dalton Musselman all scored tries for Penn State, with Musselman adding four conversions.

But while Penn State's comeback was impressive, it was almost erased in the final moments. Penn State led 33-30 with just over a minute to go when Kutztown found some space and then cross-kicked to the wing. The kick was gathered and grounded in the corner, but the play was called back for offsides on the kick. Kutztown weren't particularly happy, but that was it and Penn State held on.

"It was a heartbreaker," said Kutztown Head Coach Gregg Jones. "We had the momentum in the first half. It was a great game; terrific players on both teams and though we fell short on the scoreboard we found out a lot about ourselves."

For Hundley, Penn State just needs to fix some decision-making.

"We just need to improve on where we decide to play rugby, taking some chances in the wrong areas," said the Penn State coach. "We'll continue to get better defensively too."

Caleb Smith was Penn State's player of the game, while Kutztown flyhalf Thorne O'Connell logged 17 points with a try, two penalty goals, and three conversions. and ran the attack nicely.