PROVO -- For the fourth time in the competition’s five-year history, BYU clinched the Deseret First Duel title over rival University of Utah. Deseret First awarded BYU its plaque for the 2011-12 season Friday afternoon at Legends Grille.
The Duel ended with a score of 31-16 for the Cougars. With a total of 50 points available in 13 sports, the Cougars needed 26 points to capture the 2011-12 title.
The Cougars claimed the Duel when the BYU men's tennis team earned three Duel points after a 5-2 win over the Utes in Salt Lake City on Feb. 15, giving BYU a total of 28 points to Utah’s 13 this season.
The Cougars claimed Deseret First Duel trophies in women's soccer, women's volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, men's and women's swimming/diving, men's tennis and baseball. Utah collected its points from victories in football, gymnastics and women’s tennis.
The BYU soccer team started the season off well with a 4-0 win, followed by a 3-0 sweep in women’s volleyball. After losing in football, BYU bounced back with a 61-42 victory in men's basketball and haven't trailed in the overall score since that victory. The Cougars finished off their point total with a 63-58 victory in women’s basketball, first-place finish in swimming and diving, 5-2 win in men’s tennis and 2-1 series finish in baseball.
The Deseret First Duel began in 2007 when BYU and Utah partnered with Deseret First Credit Union to create the rivalry series, a celebration of one of the nation’s oldest and most spirited college rivalries. BYU captured the inaugural title in 2007-08, and Utah won the following year in 2008-09. Since then, the Cougars have run off three-straight titles in 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.
The BYU vs. Utah rivalry is one of the oldest in the country. In November 2005, the Wall Street Journal rated the rivalry the fourth best in college athletics.
Rachel Hawks is a sports information director for BYU Athletic Communications.