Mizzou Rugby traveled to Kansas City for a friendly against the University of Kansas. The game was hosted by the men’s club Kansas City Blues in their complex, Swope Park. Kansas controlled the offensive possession for a large majority of the first half. The Tigers couldn’t seem to get the ball out of their own territory as they committed unforced turnovers and penalties when they gained possession of the ball. Kansas got on the board first as their forwards punched in a score from close to the try zone with pick-and go’s. The Tigers offense answered back as a break off a lineout set up the Mizzou forwards deep in KU territory. After a few pick and go’s by the forward pack, sophomore 8-man James Glavin picked the ball and drove through a defender to touch it down for the try. Gareth Jones’s conversion tied the score 7-7. A few minutes before the half, the Mizzou defense allowed another Kansas try to make the score 12-7 KU at the half.
The Tigers started the second half hot as the forwards drove down the field and, again, positioned them near the goal line. Sam Upman picked the ball out of a ruck and drove through two defenders, carrying them with him, and scored the try. The Tigers led 14-12 before the defense seemed to get lazy. They struggled to keep the Jayhawks out of the try zone as KU put up two more tries quickly to make the score 26-14. Mizzou tried to rally to come back, but each time they gained possession they turned the ball over and couldn’t capitalize. They managed to drive down the field and position themselves close to the goal line near the end of the match. Flyhalf Gareth Jones received the ball from the scrumhalf out of the ruck and darted the defense from 10 meters out for the try. Down 26-21, the Tigers got the ball back and drove down the field using their forwards, but had the ball stolen off the ruck and kicked out of bounds to end the game.
The Tigers look forward to playing Kansas again March 5th for a very important conference matchup. Mizzou ends its fall season November 7th at Iowa State for a Heart of America Conference matchup.