by Brett Anker
Arkansas State dispatched Oklahoma 69-7 in the first round of the Penn Mutual Varsity Cup. The Red Wolves jumped out to an early first half lead and proved to be too strong for the Sooners.
The first 10 minutes of the game were very competitive but once Arkansas State got rolling Oklahoma was outmatched. Andrew Pretorius opened the scoring just inside the quarter of the game and the floodgates opened.
“The first 10 minutes they were very high energy. They were playing at home in a playoff game. They tested us a little on defense but after that we started getting into our game plan,” said Arkansas State coach Shaun Potgeiter.
In total, the Red Wolves scored seven first half tries for a 45-0 halftime lead. Six different Arkansas State players scored tries with Dylan Boast getting two in the process.
ASU was able to roll on some substitutes in the second half. The Red Wolves slowed down in the second half but managed to take the game to 69-0 lead. Sam Ross and Tabo Maree each dotted down twice as Arkansas State cruised to victory.
“In a weird way we were able to start to get guys off the field and recovered for next week,” Potgeiter said of the comfortable lead. “We were able to get some guys on to up their experience and get them more game fit for next week.”
The Red Wolves did struggle a bit with discipline in the second half, getting a yellow card and committing a few penalties. Oklahoma finally broke into the score sheet in the final minutes to end the game at 69-7.
“We emptied our bench in the second half. The guys played well but we struggled with discipline late in the game. With the game being so far ahead it was hard for them to keep their energy and motivation up,” Potgeiter added.
Arkansas State will host Utah Valley University in the quarterfinals next week.