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Cal Rugby Defeats Arizona on Homecoming Weekend

February 25, 2023
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BERKELEY – Cal rugby took down PAC conference opponent Arizona 36-17 on Saturday to extend its record to 9-0. The Bears scored six tries by five different players, with senior Cal Liebowitz logging a brace of tries in the contest. Saturday’s match was a Homecoming celebration, with Cal rugby alumni from teams spanning 40 years returning home to Witter Rugby Field for the festivities.

“We appreciate Arizona and wish them the best going forward,” Cal head coach Jack Clark said. “It was fantastic to see so many old faces this afternoon at the homecoming. Great day in Strawberry Canyon.”

Scrumhalf Caleb Tomasin lit up the scoreboard first in the match when he carried the ball in at the 11th minute. Arizona answered with a try of its own a few minutes later to level the score at 5-5.

Six minutes later, freshman center Max Threlkeld ran a score in, and co-captain Max Schumacher added the extras to give the Bears an advantage they would hold onto for the remainder of the match. Alex Brundage touched down in the tryzone at minute 26 before Arizona put another try on the board as the first half expired to make it 17-12 in favor of the Bears at the intermission.

Liebowitz contributed his first try of the day 10 minutes into the second half and Schumacher converted successfully. The Wildcats had their final try of the match eight minutes later, but Brundage blocked the conversion attempt to deny Arizona the extra two points.

No. 8 Alex Aguero pushed his way into the tryzone at the 60th minute and Liebowitz sealed the deal with a try in the 75th minute. Schumacher converted the final score.

Cal celebrated Homecoming with a special recognition at halftime for rugby alumni from the national championship teams of 1983, 1988, 1998, 2008 and the sevens champions of 2013. In the reserve-grade match that preceded the varsity contest, the Bears shut out the Wildcats 92-0.

The Bears return to Witter Rugby Field for the final match of their homestand next Saturday. Cal hosts reigning national champion Army West Point for a varsity match at 1 p.m. PT. A reserve-grade match will be played immediately after.

Scoring Timeline:

Cal vs Arizona

11:00 – Tomasin 5

14:00 – Arizona 5

21:00 – Threlkeld 5, Schumacher 2

26:00 – Brundage 5

40:00 – Arizona 5, Arizona 2

Half: Cal 17, Arizona 12

50:00 – Liebowitz 5, Schumacher 2

58:00 – Arizona 5

60:00 – Aguero 5

75:00 – Liebowitz 5, Schumacher 2

Final: Cal 36, Arizona 17

Starting XV:

1. Emilio Shea 2. Matt Vranesh 3. Charlie Walsh 4. Miles Malone 5. Tom Dixon 6. Luke Freeman 7. Cal Liebowitz 8. Alex Aguero 9. Caleb Tomasin 10. Kealan O’Connell 11. Evan Weigold 12. Rand Santos 13. Max Threlkeld 14. Joe Kirsten 15. Max Schumacher

Substitutions:

3:00 – Alex Brundage

21:00 – Nate Salter

Cal Rugby Defeats Arizona on Homecoming Weekend

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