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UVU pulls away from Utah State for I-AA rugby title

(KSL.com)



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SANDY — After Utah State pulled within a try midway through the second half, Utah Valley rugby's Brian Purcell took over down the stretch and helped his Wolverine side to its biggest win of the year.

Purcell scored two tries in the final 15 minutes of the match, and UVU pulled away from the Aggies for a 46-24 win in the Division I-AA college rugby championship match Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium.

Utah Valley clung to a 19-12 lead at halftime, but Utah State made things interesting to start the second half. The Aggies pulled within a try at 22-17 as Zack Rial crossed the line midway through the second half, but the northern Utah school would get no closer.

Purcell took a swing pass along the left sideline for a try in the 65th minute to help the Wolverines ice the game. After the conversion, UVU ramped up its lead to 27-17 with only 15 minutes remaining.

Utah Valley's Mekeli Haimin found teammate Cody Parry on a fast break for a try right down the middle of the pitch to go up 34-17, putting the game away for the Wolverines in the 69th minute.

Purcell added a try in the 71st minute, diving across the line for five points from the left mark, and Parry scored barely a minute later to go up 46-17.

Utah State added a try on the final play of the match with time expired for the final 22-point margin.

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Sean Walker

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