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February 22, 2024

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Club rugby team jumps out to 26-0 lead at the half en route to 45-24 win at University of Cincinnati

The Bowling Green club rugby team boosted its record to 9-2-1 this weekend with a 45-24 win against the University of Cincinnati.

The Bearcats’ season has been less than satisfactory thus far, posting a 2-4 record. The University of Cincinnati looked to end the season on a good note with a victory against the Falcons. Although BG had already clinched a spot in the Mid-American Conference championship, a win against the Bearcats provided the Falcons with good momentum going forward.

While head coach Tony Mazzarella said he was happy with the win, he felt BG did not play to its full potential.

“We didn’t come out strong,” Mazzarella said. “We had bad energy.”

Cincinnati had a size advantage over BG, but what the Falcons lacked in size, they made up for in offensive play. Nick Ross and Adam Regini placed several kicks downfield for Steve Fritsch and Cole Shaffer to retrieve, which allowed the offense to run smoothly. The Viancourt brothers, Frank and Allen, Rob Oswald and Sean McFarland also stopped multiple Cincinnati runs.

The Falcons jumped out to an early lead with a try by Allen Viancourt 40 seconds into the game. Another try by Cole Shaffer and two conversion kicks by Mike Powell padded the BG lead. The Falcons went into the second half leading the Bearcats 26-0.

Cincinnati attempted to claw its way back into the game in the second half with a couple of tries, conversions and a penalty kick. The Bearcats also took advantage of the mass amount of penalties called on the Falcons. At one point, BG was penalized 14 times in a row. Director Roger Mazzarella said he was displeased with the penalties.

After solving the penalty problem, the Falcons got back on a roll. BG added three more tries by Allen Viancourt, Nick Ross and McFarland and two more conversions by Mike Powell, pushing the final score to 45-24.

Captain Alex Garnaut said offensive composure was a key to the Falcons success, but he was disappointed in BG’s defensive play.

“We were weak and undisciplined on defense,” Garnaut said. “But our offensive play was sound and powerful which allowed us to keep scoring.”

Tony Mazzarella said he is looking forward to what the Falcons need to work on before next week’s MAC championship game.

“The long road trip may have caused us [BG] to be a little slow,” Mazzarella said. “Since we were already in the championship, we may have taken the game lightly, We need to make sure [the slow start] doesn’t happen again and look forward to next week.”

The ninth ranked Falcons travel to Illinois to face Northern Illinois University for the MAC championship next week.

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