Game Preview: Warriors return home to face Seattle
Herriman, Utah — The Utah Warriors will return home to Zions Bank Stadium tomorrow to face the reigning two-time Major League Rugby (MLR) champions, the Seattle Seawolves. Both teams will meet on the pitch for a 7:00 p.m. MDT kick-off with broadcast plans for KSLSports.com and the KSL TV App.
“Seattle is a great squad, we’re looking forward to the test at home,” said Utah Warriors head coach Shawn Pittman. “We’ve focused on some areas this week that we think will make a positive impact on the game and hopefully will pull us through the match.”
The Warriors are coming into the weekend with a 2-1 regular-season record. They beat the Austin Gilgronis on the road in the 2021 opening weekend match, 30-28, and the Toronto Arrows in the Warriors’ home opener, 39-24. Last weekend, they were defeated narrowly on the road by the New England Free Jacks, 22-21 but came home with a 7-point loss bonus point.
The Seawolves are coming into the weekend off a bye week and a 0-2 record. They have lost both their road games against Houston and LA so far this season and will be looking for a win this weekend, according to Utah Warriors assistant coach Shaun Davies.
“As a squad, we are really excited to test ourselves against the two-time champions, Seattle,” Davies said. “They have not had the best start to the season and are really going to be up for this game, hoping to get their campaign back on track.”
The last time the two matched up was the Warriors’ last game of the 2020 season before it was cancelled, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Warriors came away with the victory on Seattle’s home turf, battling 10 minutes past regulation with a last-second try to steal the win, 33-31.
Pittman said that set piece will be a key determining factor of tomorrow’s match, and that both teams will be focused on this aspect of the game.
“Set piece will be a big priority for both teams,” Pittman said. “So, I’m looking forward to this being the biggest challenge so far this year. If we can be successful here, I think we have a good chance at winning the game.”
Davies called out the fly-half position match-up as one to watch this weekend. Warriors fly-half Hagen Schulte will face off with Seattle’s Ben Cima at the 10 position.
“In terms of match-ups, I am excited to watch Hagen play against Ben Cima,” Davies said. “They both have a strong kicking game and really look to command their respective teams attacking shapes.”
Davies also called out new Utah signee Mika Kruse as a player to watch. Kruse, who made his debut off the bench with Utah last weekend in Massachusetts, showed his speed and skill, making an impressive breakaway run in the 71st minute.
“Look for Mika Kruse to have a strong game, slotting into the 13 position with Tyler Fisher being out this game,” Davies said. “Mika offers something very different on attack, especially at altitude on our wide field.”
UTAH WARRIORS VS. SEATTLE SEAWOLVES
Date: April 10, 2021
Time: 7:00 p.m. MDT
Where: Zions Bank Stadium (Herriman, UT)
Broadcast: KSLSports.com, KSL TV App, The Rugby Network (Internationally)
Radio: ESPN 700 and ESPN 960
Utah Warriors Gameday Roster:
- Franco van den Berg
- Tuvere Vugakoto
- Angus Maclellan
- Jurie Van Vuuren
- Matt Jensen
- Thomas Tu’avao
- Bailey Wilson (C)
- Lance Williams
- Fraser Hurst
- Hagen Schulte
- Josh Whippy
- Calvin Whiting
- Mika Kruse
- Mikey Te’o (VC)
- Cliven Loubser
- Chad Gough
- Alex Tucci
- Olive Kilifi
- James Mocke
- Mike Gieselman
- Danny Christensen
- Derek Ellingson
- Joe Mano
The Rugby Alliance Officially Formed: Stade Toulousain and Utah Warriors Unite to Elevate Rugby to New Heights
SALT LAKE CITY (Sept. 21, 2023) – Stade Toulousain, led by President
Largest Scrum in History Bested Guinness World Record after USA Eagles Victory over Stade Toulousain
SALT LAKE CITY (Sept. 17, 2023) – A new Guinness World Record
SANDY, Utah (September 15, 2023) — Five Utah Warriors athletes will pull
Due to Public Demand, Matchup Between the USA Men’s Rugby Team and France’s Stade Toulousain is Rescheduled to Saturday, Sept. 16 at 7 p.m.
SALT LAKE CITY (Aug. 21, 2023) – Due to public demand, the
HERRIMAN, Utah (August 17, 2023) — The Utah Warriors have selected Josh