The BYU Cougars met the Central Washington University Wildcats in Seattle and won 76-7 led by 3 tries from 2011 All American junior center Seki Kofe.
In total the Cougars scored 12 tries, 7 of them coming in the first half. A stunted started to the 2ndstanza didn’t see BYU regain their scoring edge until the 54th minute via a bullying run from senior flanker Hynie Leaatoa.
Citing his team’s 2nd half start Smyth said his team lost their edge.
“I thought the boys played well in the first half.” Smyth said, “They worked hard. We were able to establish a good go forward platform and the guys executed the moves well. But the second half was somewhat different. We lost our focus and got a little loose. But we were able to right the ship and it turned out to be a good first game of the season.”
One of the highlights for the Cougars according to Smyth was Kofe.
Kofe, a native of the Northwest hailing from Oregon, was a spark for the BYU attack and defense noted Cougar assistant coach Kimball Kjar.
“He’s a dynamic player,” Kjar said of Kofe, “And he set up a lot of things for us on both sides of the ball. It was nice to see our guys key off of him a lot today.”
Kofe didn’t score his first try until the 31st minute, but it came off of a CWU turnover 10 meters from their goal line that he set up in tandem with fellow center Paul Lasike.
After a two-man tackle by the duo the ball was stolen by Lasike and Kofe scooped up the loose ball for the easy score.
Kofe would score again in back-to-back fashion in the 62nd and 65th minutes as BYU regained their stride in the 2nd half.
The BYU struggles in the 2nd half started in the 41st minute as the Cougars were on the attack close to the Wildcats goal line. But an errant pass saw the BYU attackers isolated and a deft CWU turnover allowed Wildcat senior Tim Stanfill to race almost 90 meters for his team’s only try.
More attacking errors close to the CWU goal line saw BYU struggle for almost 15 minutes in the 2nd half.
The precision and physicality that saw BYU run in 47 1st half points was reset with Leaatoa’s 54th minute try from a scrum and the dominant play of prop Mikey Su’a.
Su’a not only led the Cougars’ dominance at the scrum but he also tallied a duo of tries in the 12th and 70th minutes.
BYU assistant coach Wayne Tarawhiti said the hard work of the forwards at the set piece and in contact gave the Cougars a number of advantages.
“We set the tone at the break down and the scrum and that led to a majority of our tries throughout the game,” Tarawhiti said, “It was a good first hit out for the guys, but we still have room to improve.”
BYU’s physical dominance in the scrum was no more exemplified than in the 26th minute with BYU captain Ryan Roundy scoring a push-over try from a 5 meter scrum.
The Cougars next square off against the Huskies of the University of Washington tomorrow at 6pm PT before they finish their Seattle tour with a heady tilt against Old Puget Sound men’s club on Saturday at 1.30pm.
For news and live scoring updates follow BYU Rugby on Twitter and on Facebook.
5’ Teo 5
12’ Su’a 5/Lasike 2
15’ Forrester 5/Lasike 2
22’ Allred 5/Lasike 2
26’ Roundy 5/Lasike 2
31’ Kofe 5/Lasike 2
38’ Lubbe 5/Lasike 2
HALF: BYU 47 CWU 0
41’ CWU (Stanfill) 5/Lobe 2
54’ Leaatoa 5
62’ Kofe 5
64’ Kofe 5/Funaki 2
70’ Su’a 5/Funaki 2
78’ Williams 5
FINAL SCORE: BYU 76 CWU 7
BYU 1st XV:
Ryan Roundy ©
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