BYU rugby disassembles the Navy Midshipmen in Varsity Cup Semifinal win


The rain did not phase the Cougars in their 60-0 win over Navy on Saturday, April 26, at BYU’s South Field.

BYU will advance to the Varsity Cup championship to play in its ninth-straight national championship game on Saturday, May 3, at the Rio Tinto stadium after shutting out Navy.

“I was very pleased with the boys today. Set pieces were good. The weather was obviously a concern going in,” BYU head coach David Smyth said of the team’s play and the nonstop rain. “I felt we did really well. When the chances came, we took them.”

The constant downpour made it difficult for both sides to work the ball at times, but the Cougars kept their passes tight and ran straight lines looking for gaps.

BYU's Zane Mendenhall  runs in for a try as Navy trails on Saturday, April 26, at BYU's South Field. BYU won 60-0.
BYU’s Zane Mendenhall runs in for a try as Navy trails on Saturday, April 26, at BYU’s South Field. BYU won 60-0. (Photo by Natalie Stoker)

“Just (use) extra security with the ball. When I catch it, I take it in. Growing up in New Zealand, this is what we played in,” said BYU sophomore fly half Jonny Linehan of the rain’s effect on ball control.

BYU’s first score came from sophomore center Jared Whippy, who ran in for five in the fourth minute. Linehan’s conversion was good, putting the Cougars up 7-0, and they didn’t look back.

BYU’s junior winger, Chris Wernli, scored his first of two tries in the eighth minute. In the 13th minute, Whippy subbed out due to a dislocation. Football and rugby standout Paul Lasike filled in for Whippy.

Lasike’s presence on the field added greater confidence to the Cougars, as he ran over two Midshipmen enroute to score in the 28th minute.

BYU went into halftime with a 29-0 lead over Navy.

Sophomore fullback Joshua Whippy opened up the second half in dramatic fashion, running in a try from midfield and breaking several tackles on the way, increasing BYU’s lead to 34-0.

BYU scored several tries in the second half, finishing the match 60-0.

BYU looks forward to defending its title at the Varsity Cup championship on Saturday, May 3, at 2 p.m. (MT). The match will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network.

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