Hawkeyes Give Jayhawks a Thriller Game
Kansas beats Iowa 27-19 in Merit Table at Westwick
This was the first meeting between our new Heart of America rival team, Iowa Hawkeyes. The other “player” in the game was the weather. - At kickoff, it was just 1 degree above freezing with a howling 16 mph wind blowing straight down field from the south, with gusts to 24 mph. The Jayhawks had the wind behind them in the first half. The wind obviously was a huge advantage to the Jayhawks who could loft the ball and establish the game at the Hawkeyes’ end of the field. The Iowa players played a tight, ball-control ground game and were able to grind the ball up field into the Kansas end. The early game was this sort of stalemate.
15 minutes – Jayhawks pick off a Hawkeye pass at midfield and Jayhawk wing REED PARSONS (pictured here) streaked for a long run and try through the posts. Fullback TRENT TAYRIEN kicked the easy conversion in front of the posts.
SCORE 7-0 Kansas
29 minutes – Jayhawks pound a multi-phase attack and finally get outside center SCOTT MERDINGER sprung for a try. He crosses goal line on right and cuts to the posts to down the ball. TAYRIEN makes another easy shot.
SCORE 14-0 Kansas
32 minutes – Jayhawk fullback TRENT TAYRIEN gets a short run through Hawkeye traffic and scores a try mid-right of posts. (Tayrien has scored a try in EVERY college game this season.) His attempt for the extra points is wide.
SCORE 19-0 Kansas
Hawkeyes now get the tail wind. The half resumes the grinding stalemates of two teams good at ball control.
15 minutes – Hawkeyes run multi-phase attack and score off a short run, mid-right. Extra point attempt is good.
SCORE 19-7 Kansas
20 minutes – Hawkeyes spring a long run down right sideline and score a try through the posts. Easy extra points.
SCORE 19-14 Kansas
25 minutes – Jayhawks awarded a penalty kick just beyond the 22 meter line in center of field TAYRIEN goes for 3 against that big wind and makes it with very strong shot. - This makes the game score margin 8 points and more than a potential converted try.
SCORE 22-14 Kansas
30 minutes – Hawkeyes get a try in the right corner. The very difficult extra points shot is short. Iowa is now within 3 points.
SCORE 22-19 Kansas
35 minutes – Kansas badly needs a 4th try to get a bonus point in standings. Jayhawk wing RILEY BOTZ finally gets a slashing run through traffic from mid-field and scores in left corner. TAYRIEN is short on the long attempt.
SCORE 27-19 Kansas
This is the part of the game that became a nail-biter for all the fans. Both teams knew the clock was running down and the pace of play became frantic. Jayhawk 2nd row TANNER SHIMEK was yellow carded off for a late hit, so the Jayhawks played this part of the game a man short. When the game clock was down to 1 minute left, the Hawkeyes were awarded a penalty kick on their own 22 and incredibly appeared to punt it to their left sideline. (If the ball were to go out of bounds, it would have caused a lineout and potentially allowed the time to run out.) However the kick was a bullet, straight to the left sideline at chest height and caught in stride by their wing bursting full pace up that sideline. This set up a long gain and the Hawkeyes were now in mid-field. That 1 minute of clock got stretched to at least 5 minutes. The ball didn’t leave the field. It was a terrific game as Iowa played their hearts out. The ball was finally carried out near the Kansas 22 and time was called.
FINAL SCORE 27-19 Kansas
The Iowa team was showered at the Rec Center and hosted a meal in the Jayhawks’ clubhouse above Johnny’s. The Jayhawks “Man of the Match” as selected by the Hawkeyes was JACK DIENST playing flyhalf. Kansas alumni and some parents of players were there for the after party. – We look forward to the return fixture with this great University of Iowa team next year.
Westwick Rugby Complex, E 1094 Road, Lawrence, KS, United States 66047 --- Mail to: The Kansas Rugby Foundation Inc. P.O. Box 1182 Lawrence, KS 66044