UC San Diego had its first home game of the season this past Saturday against Claremont Colleges. Claremont tops the table in the Gold Coast Rugby Conference’s DII and played like it, handing the Tritons a loss.
Despite owning a good part of the possession and territorial occupation, the Tritons had trouble finding any consistency in the first half and saw themselves exposed to counter-attacks, which Claremont exploited. The Tritons held up in the scrums, but could not contain Claremont’s 8-9 combination as they launched countless attacks right through the middle of the Tritons’ defense. UC San Diego had a couple of scoring occasions in the first half, most notably on a goal line stand by Claremont that resulted in a scrum to the visiting team after the ball was buried in a maul.
With an injury depleted side, UC San Diego continued to fight in the second half but couldn’t muster much offensive momentum. Claremont continued their aggressive showing on the day and scored a few more tries, before the Tritons saved their honor on an action that saw the ball go out wide through the hands to center Sean Martinez, who fixed a defender and passed to winger Rohan Floegel-Shetty who made the smart decision to pass the ball back inside, allowing Martinez to cross the end-zone line and score the final try of the game.
UC San Diego has two more occasions to compete in the regular season when it goes to Pepperdine next weekend and when it hosts UC Riverside two weeks from now.