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Utah Warriors Hit the Road Again, Hoping to Overcome Losing Streak

June 7, 2024 - Major League Rugby (MLR)
Utah Warriors News Release

HERRIMAN - The Utah Warriors travel to take on the league runner-up Seattle Seawolves this Sunday in a game that poses a lot of challenges, but also a lot of excitement, according to Warriors coach Greg Cooper.

It's easy to assume that Utah is down and out after last week's brutal 27-20 loss to the San Diego Legion, where a tremendous amount of injuries ultimately couldn't be overcome. But that's not the case, according to Cooper, who will again be without many key contributors come Sunday.

"It is a very challenging place to win and they have a great record there," Cooper said. "So you throw that in the mix with the players not available...I just think it adds to the excitement."

The Warriors enter the match sitting six points behind the Dallas Jackals for the final postseason spot in the Western Conference of the Major League Rugby Competition. With just four games remaining in the regular season, and with Seattle standing as a formidable challenge, going into this weekend's match with the proper mindset is at a premium.

"Our players need to face the disappointment, but also look at the really good things that we did (last week)," Cooper said. "So that's the frustration...We could be sitting ahead of Dallas, but we're not, so we have to win every game from now on, at least three of the four games remaining."

Sunday's lineup will include more new faces as all the prominent players that sat out in last week's loss to San Diego will again be out, along with a few others such as top fullback Caleb Makene. Warriors rookies Noah Bain and Sam Reimer will play their first matches for Utah, and veteran Tuvere Vugagoto will make his return to the field. Despite the prospect of injured players, Cooper remains optimistic.

"We have a few players making their debuts and I'm really excited about it," Cooper said. "You're disappointed for the players that got injured on the weekend, but guys are up for the challenge...So there's excitement in adversity, and there's genuine excitement about that."

Those being tasked to step in and take prominent roles in a tough environment are confident with Cooper striving to help them as much as possible.

"The guys who are being asked to step in have worked really hard, so I'm not spending one minute thinking they're not up to the job," Cooper said. "My job is to try and help them and not focus on things they may not be strong at, but to focus on the things they are good at."

With regards to the Seawolves, they've again proved one of the better teams in the MLR and present a solid and consistent approach that is often hard to overcome.

"They're very good at the basics of the game," Cooper said. "Their scrum is good, their line-outs are good and they just play a solid all-around game."


WHEN: Sunday, June 9

WHERE: Starfire Sports Complex, Seattle

TIME: 8:00 P.M. MST


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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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