College rugby: Cougars, Utes advance to semifinals

Published: Sunday, May 8 2011 11:00 p.m. MDT

The match was played in a series of scoring spurts as the Utes took a 15-0 lead, Army rallied to go ahead 19-15, and then Utah stormed back to go ahead 32-19 before Army scored the final try of the contest. The victory advances the Utes into the CPD semi-finals against defending champion California this Saturday in Colorado. Army is eliminated after suffering its first loss of the season.

Tonata Lauti's penalty kick put Utah up 3-0 early in the match and when the Utes scored two more tries — the forwards bulled one over off a 5-meter lineup and A.J. Tuineau set up the second with a great run before offloading to Blake Miller. It was 15-0 and appeared to be Utah's day.

Army was not impressed and came roaring back. The backs spun the ball wide for the Black Knights' first try. They made two penalty goals, and then they spun it wide once again for a try and a 16-15 halftime lead.

A penalty kick upped that lead to 19-15 with 30 minutes to play before the Utes came back to life. Maika Hafoka scored a try and Lauti converted to regain the lead 22-19. The Utes won a lineout and their backs had a line break that resulted in a 60-meter try. Nick Mostyn broke through off a ruck for a 32-19 lead with two minutes to play.

Army was awarded a penalty try as time ran out, but could not score again in injury time.

This weekend's CPD semifinals will be played at Infinity Park in Glendale, Colorado and Utah will be matched up against defending national champion California-Berkeley. The CPD championship match will be played on May 21 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy. Both the semis — 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 14 and the finals will be televised live on ESPN3 and via tape delay on ESPNU.

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