LOS ANGELES – The University of California defeated UCLA, 58-0 in Sunday's final of the Dennis Storer Classic at the UCLA campus.
Danny Barrett and Seamus Kelly scored two tries, Alex Aronson went 6-8 on conversions, and added two penalty kicks for 18 points, and six other Golden Bears found the tryline as Cal improved to 4-0.
It was the seventh straight UCLA Tournament win for Cal, with the last six finals against the Bruins. All 50 Bears who made the trip saw action on the pitch during the weekend.
"There's nothing not to like about this tournament," said Head Coach Jack Clark. "The timing is perfect from a preseason standpoint and the tournament format provides a lot of minutes to be spread around the team."
Prior to the tournament final, the Bears brought a frosh/soph team to Loyola Marymount, where ten players scored 14 tries, including a hat trick by outside center James Poindexter and pairs from flanker Carl Hendrickson and wing Hunter Frisinger en route to a 95-3 victory. Scrumhalf Nicklas Boyer connected on 5-7 conversion and Poindexter went 6-for-7, while Lions scrumhalf Gianluca Keeler averted a shutout with his first-half penalty kick.
Later on Sunday at UCLA, a more experienced team took the pitch and played solid rugby in front of a large crowd filled with many Cal supporters and others who enjoyed an event that has grown to include a youth-club bracket in addition to the collegiate competition.
"UCLA is really a capable host and a rugby program that continues to improve under their coach, Scott Stewart," said Clark. "I think they were a bit banged up with injuries today, which made it tough on them."
As a team, the Rugby Bears were grateful to kick off their season with so many minutes to distribute over four matches following two weeks of training camp.
"There were times when we lost our shape and could have used a little more communication, but overall we played hard and that's always good to see," said senior scrumhalf Connor Ring of Sunday's final. "Alex kicked well today and the forward pack had pretty good speed to the ball."
Aronson said, "We have a really young team this year and getting out there to play after breaking camp was good. There's a lot of lessons to take on, sticking to the systems and keeping our shape."
The Bears next travel to Vallejo to play Cal Maritime on Friday, Jan. 20, at 7 pm on Mare Island, followed on Saturday, Jan. 21, by a 1 p.m. contest at Santa Clara University.
Storer Classic Final
Tries: Barrett 2, Braun, Colin, Kelly 2, Wrobel, Anderson
Convs: Aronson 6
Pens: Aronson 2