KUTZTOWN, PA. – Navy men’s rugby (9-0, 7-0) started fast and ended strong in its match against the Kutztown Golden Bears (2-4, 2-4). Navy scored three tries in the first 12 minutes to jump out to an early 19 point lead and outscored Kutztown 14-0 in the final 25 minutes to win the match 46-16.

Credit: Navy Athletics

“We tried out a couple of different combinations in the back line and they worked out for us today. Kutztown is a really tough place to get a win and the boys were fantastic today,” said director of rugby Gavin Hickie. “With our record at 9-0, we have grown each week and we’re in the exact place we wanted to be going into our game against Army. We will work on a couple of things this week and be ready to go. We want to see everyone out at the Prusmack Rugby Center next Saturday to support the team against Army.”

William Webb provided an early spark for the Mids’ offense, scoring a try just 1:33 into the match for Navy’s first score. Webb’s score is the fastest try scored by Navy this season. Lewis Gray made his first conversion kick of the afternoon after Webb’s quick score to give Navy a 7-0 lead.

Navy continued to pile on points over the next 10 minutes. Ratu Osea Melibua scored a try in the seventh minute and Sean MacLaney scored a try in the 11th minute to give Navy a three-score lead. Gray made the conversion kick after MacLaney’s score and then made a penalty kick in the 29th minute to extend Navy’s lead to 22-0.

Kutztown made a penalty kick in the 34th minute and another in the 41st minute to start a huge scoring spree at the beginning of the second half. After the Golden Bears’ penalty kick, Ben Haugh scored a try in the 44th minute to give Navy a 21 point advantage. Kutztown answered with its third penalty kick in the 47th minute, but Haugh scored his second try of the match two minutes later to give Navy a 32-9 lead. Kutztown showed it wasn’t going away, scoring its first try of the game just 21 seconds after Haugh’s score to get the Golden Bears back within 16.

Navy’s defense regrouped and shut down Kutztown’s offense for the remainder of the match, while the offense added another 14 points on a try from Jack McMahon in the 56th minute and Osea Melibua’s second try in the 79th minute. Roanin Krieger added an additional four points after making both of his conversion kicks on Navy’s final two scores.

Haugh and Osea Melibua were top scorers in the match for the Mids, both scoring two tries to finish with 10 points. Haugh took over as Navy’s top try scorer with 13 this season and also extended his try-scoring streak to six straight matches with a try scored. Osea Melibua’s two tries gives him eight on the season which ranks third best on the team.

Webb scored his sixth try of the season, giving him a try in four straight matches. McMahon’s score gives him four tries on the year and MacLaney scored his second try in his junior campaign. Gray finished the match with seven points on his two conversion kicks and a penalty kick to give him 119 total points this season. Krieger made his 13th and 14th conversion kicks of the season to give him 49 points total points.

Navy will be back in Annapolis for its final home match of the fall season next Saturday against rival Army. Kickoff against the Black Knights is scheduled for noon at the Prusmack Rugby Center. The match won’t count towards the Army-Navy Star Series presented by USAA but a lot will still be on the line with both teams undefeated this season.

Box Score

  • 1:33 – Navy – Try – William Webb (5-0) Conversion – Lewis Gray (7-0)
  • 7:53 – Navy – Try – Ratu Osea Melibua (12-0)
  • 11:40 – Navy – Try – Sean MacLaney (17-0) Conversion – Lewis Gray (19-0)
  • 29:35 – Navy – Penalty Kick – Lewis Gray (22-0)
  • 34:19 – Kutztown – Penalty Kick (22-3)
  • 41:50 – Kutztown – Penalty Kick (22-6)
  • 44:18 – Navy – Try – Ben Haugh (27-6)
  • 47:45 – Kutztown – Penalty Kick (27-9)
  • 49:51 – Navy – Try – Ben Haugh (32-9)
  • 50:12 – Kutztown – Try (32-14) Conversion – Kutztown (32-16)
  • 56:10 – Navy – Try – Jack McMahon (37-16) Conversion – Roanin Krieger (39-16)
  • 79:35 – Navy – Try – Ratu Osea Melibua (44-16) Conversion – Roanin Krieger (46-16)

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