Ute Briefs (3/10)


Emotions often hit extremes when playing against a hated rival. Such was the case Saturday afternoon when the U rugby club visited BYU in Provo for the always-intense Wasatch Cup.

The cup will stay in Provo for a third consecutive time after the Cougars staved off a late Ute comeback for a 30-27 win.

“We came into the game feeling really good about our chances of taking this one,” assistant coach Blake Burdette said.

Utah fly-half Mike Harman got things rolling early in Saturday’s game when he scored a 30-yard try followed by a penalty kick to put the Utes up, 10-0.

For a few moments at least, the No. 6 Utes had to be salivating at handing the No. 5 Cougars the same fate that Colorado did when they upset BYU, 28-22, just two weeks earlier. But fate can be a cruel thing.

BYU, led by All-American Derek Smith and his two tries, reeled off 18 unanswered points to close the first half. They would score five more in the second half for 23 straight points without a peep from Utah.

“For the last ten, fifteen minutes of the first half, we weren’t playing our style,” Burdette said. “We were the better team in the second half, but we made a few mistakes that cost us the game.”

With less than 10 minutes remaining in the game, the Utes finally got their act together. Utah’s Scott Cowley scored a try to make it 23-20. Utah outscored BYU, 17-10, in the second half, and for another few moments, Utah’s spirits raised.

BYU captain Steve St. Pierre quickly brought down the Utes’ short-lived high by crossing the line on a short scrum and diving on a loose ball for a 30-20 advantage that all but put the game out of reach for Utah.

The Utes were without several key players, including Andrew Swindle, who is out for the season.

Harman would eventually score his second try of the game as the clock expired, but it was too little too late.

Jason Peterson


The No. 25 Utah lacrosse team was in action on Sunday versus No. 8 Arizona State at Juan Diego High School in Draper. Arizona State started the game with more intensity than the Utes, andUtah’s defensive effort was not enough to stop the Sun Devils from taking care of the Utes to the tune of 22-8.

Five minutes into the first quarter, Arizona State was man-up following a Utah penalty. Arizona State worked the ball around the outside of the field before shooting an outside shot, which skimmed past Utah goalie, Andrew Martinelli.

Arizona State then scored two goals within 45 seconds to take a 3-0 lead. Utah committed two penalties, allowing Arizona State an easy goal to bring the score to 4-0.

Utah did not give up, however, and answered with goals by sophomores Mike Calvert and Pat Guinn with less than two minutes to play in the first quarter.

After Arizona State and Utah swapped goals to start the second quarter, the score was 7-4 before the Sun Devils reeled off five straight, upping its lead to eight.

Utah ended the streak with a goal by junior midfielder Jon Owens on a nice assist from junior attackman Matt Qualey while falling to the ground.

Arizona State notched one more goal in the final seconds of the first half to end with a commanding lead, 13-5.

The second half proved to be no different from the first as Arizona State came out and scored two quick goals. Utah would only score one goal in the third quarter, making the score 18-6 with one quarter to play.

Again, Arizona State notched two quick goals to start the fourth quarter. Utah answered with goals by freshman midfielder Dave Hatch and junior midfielder Cory Merrell. Arizona State would score two additional goals to win the game by 14 goals, 22-8.

Utah will play Division-II No. 1 Westminster College on Thursday at Juan Diego. Face-off will be at 7 p.m.

Tim Haslam


The Puttin’ Utes will be in San Diego on Monday and Tuesday to compete in the Farms Collegiate Invitational tournament. Utah will play 36 holes on Monday and 18 holes on Tuesday in hopes of winning the title.

Utah will be looking to outplay 15 teams including the host school, UC San Diego. The defending team champion, San Diego State, will not be participating in the tournament.

Utah will be led by four seniors and one junior. Nic Larson, Dustin Pimm, Steve Broker and Chris Gresh hope to score well, and junior Chance Cota hopes to improve on his 74.08 stroke average.

Senior Nick Carter leads the team in scoring average (73.00) but is listed as day-to-day while suffering from torn cartilage in his rib cage.

Several teams in the top 75 will try to win the tournament including No. 33 Wichita State, No. 44 Arkansas and No. 54 UC Irvine.

Tim Haslam

Men’s Tennis

The Utah men’s tennis team took care of business on Saturday as they defeated Montana State Bozeman 7-0.

The Utes (6-5) dominated in every aspect of the game and did not lose a match in either the singles or double division.

“I think the team played a good match today, and everybody competed hard,” said head coach F.D. Robbins. “We needed a win, and everybody stepped up.”

The only real trouble the Utes had all day was in the top spot of doubles play. Zach Ganger and Miron Mann played a tough match against Montana’s Kyle McDonald and Jakob Dybala but came away with an 8-4 victory.

The Utes will head to San Diego, Calif. to face Dartmouth on March 16.

James Boehly

Women’s Tennis

Building on the impressive victory against Utah State, the Utah women’s tennis team continued to dominate as they shut out both Montana and Weber State for a pair of 7-0 victories.

The Lady Utes (9-4) have now played three straight games at home without losing a single match.

Against Montana, Ute Andrea Maughan had one of her most dominating performances as she shut down Jessica Souza in a 6-0, 6-0 rout.

Later that day against Weber State, the Utes didn’t let up the intensity and continued to overpower the opposition.

Weber State’s Inalise Pienaar proved to be the toughest challenge for the team, but Ute Erin Monson took care of business and won the match 6-3,6-2.

Next week the Lady Utes will take on South Carolina at home on March 15.

James Boehly


The Utah Ski Team finished the NCAA Championships with a third-place finish and a total of 550 total points. Denver won the NCAA title with 649 points while Colorado finished second with 619 points.

This is the Utes’ best finish since 2005, when the team also finished third.

“Nothing to blame but bad luck,” said director of skiing Eli Brown. “I know that if we ran the championship again now, we would be fighting for the top spot. Our team is so talented and hard-working.”

After solid play all year and in the NCAA Championship, Eva Huckova and Mikaela Grassi both earned first-team All-American honors in the women’s slalom division. Both had some of the best finishes of the day as Huckova finished with 38 points while Grassi finished with 36 points.

The NCAA Championships were not without controversy as Ute Taque Thorson finished first in the men’s slalom and would have given the team a wealth of points. But after judges ruled that he had straddled a gate, his time was nullified.

With none of the players from this year’s team graduating, the Utes will look to finish even higher in the standings at next year’s NCAA Championship.

James Boehly


The U hockey club played its final game of the season on Friday against archrival BYU. The Cougars had already claimed six wins over the Utes this season by an average of eight goals per game.

Utah had hoped to avenge their losses, in part, by going out with a surprise upset over BYU, but things didn’t quite work out that way.

BYU erupted for nine goals in the third period to finish off an exhausted and undermanned Ute club, 17-3.

Utah forward Mike Vrtis scored the first two goals in the fi
rst and second period. Eric Rees had Utah’s third goal amidst the onslaught in the final period.

“We only had two lines, and we were too tired by the third period, and we collapsed on the defensive end,” Vrtis said. “We’ve been trying to build our stamina, but we just don’t have enough guys.”

The Utes finished the season with a 5-27 record, many of the losses coming in close games. The Utes could have been tempted to dial in the season against BYU, but Vrtis assured that wasn’t the case.

“We fought until the end,” Vrtis said. “I thought we had a great attitude as a team.”

Jason Peterson