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BYU rugby: Cougars welcome Utah Valley University to Provo in cross-town matchup

By Kelby Jones

For the Deseret News

Published: Wednesday, March 19 2014 4:39 p.m. MDT

The BYU Cougars look to continue their winning ways after notching the season’s 10th victory last week at Idaho State. The Cougars welcome Utah Valley University to South Field in Provo on Saturday with a chance to gain more momentum going into late-season play.

“We look forward to another opportunity to put in a performance that reflects the work we’ve been doing on the training field,” BYU head coach David Smyth said. “I’ve been pleased with what the boys have been showing, and it should be a good day at South Field.”

UVU comes into Saturday’s matchup against BYU on the rise and should provide a good challenge for the Cougars, who are looking for a fifth-straight win.

“UVU is definitely a team on the rise,” Smyth said. “I’ve seen them a couple of times this year and have been impressed with their progress.”

The BYU coaching staff isn’t the only ones who have noticed UVU’s progress. Cougar players are also aware of the Wolverines talent and look forward to the matchup.

“UVU’s rugby program is always improving and we look forward to another chance to sort out a few kinks in our system,” BYU captain Jonathan Linehan said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to gel together for some of our upcoming games down the stretch.”

BYU’s remaining schedule includes games against some of the nation’s top rugby teams. The Cougars go head to head with San Francisco Golden Gate on March 29, in the Champions Challenge, and then face Utah in a Friday night matchup on April 4 for the Wasatch Cup.

While these games will be challenging, the Cougars look forward to the tough matchups. BYU hopes the good competition will help en route to reaching their ultimate goal which is to reach the Varsity Cup Final for the third-straight year. The Varsity Cup final will be held May 3 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, and will be televised live on NBC Sports Network.

“These next few weeks are exciting for us and we look forward to the challenges that lie ahead,” Linehan said.

The game against UVU begins at 1 p.m. MDT. Admittance is $8 for adults and $5 for students. Those who aren’t able to attend the game can watch live via BYU rugby’s YouTube channel or follow the game on Twitter.

Kelby Jones is a student at BYU studying public relations and currently writes for BYU Rugby.

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