Nov 18, 2023
The Bonnies are alive and kicking — and kicking is a big reason why.
Noah Edwards, a freshman from Santiago, Chile, outscored Wheeling University all by himself as St. Bonaventure advanced to the semifinals of the Collegiate Rugby Championship Division I national playoffs with a 26-13 victory over the host Cardinals.
“Noah had a great game. He was named the MVP of the match,” said Tui Osborne, head coach of the Bonnies.
Edwards made both try conversions and converted four of five penalty kicks, accounting for 16 of the Bonnies’ points. Daniel Lowther, a freshman from Johannesburg, South Africa, and Will Hogan, a senior from Denville. New Jersey, scored tries to help stake SBU to a 17-5 halftime lead.
Wheeling (5-3) twice cut the match to a one-score game — 17-10 and 20-13 — in the second half, but Edwards’ PKs gave the Bonnies (5-3) enough breathing room each time they did to move SBU comfortably into the final four Dec. 2 at Penn State-Berks in Reading, Pennsylvania.
“I think the consistency of our defense was really the difference, especially in the last 20 to 30 minutes,” Osborne said. “We had a lot of guys play a full 80 and they did really well. Our tight five played a fine game.”
St. Bonaventure, ranked No. 3 in the latest NCR poll, will next play top-ranked and unbeaten Brown (10-0), a 31-12 winner over Kutztown Saturday afternoon.
Brown defeated the Bonnies, 14-9, in the national semifinals last fall, preventing St. Bonaventure from advancing to Houston to defend its 2021 national title. The national title game will be held the weekend of Dec. 8-10 in Houston.
“We owe them a good game and our guys are excited to play them again,” Osborne said.
About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, St. Bonaventure University is a community committed to transforming the lives of our students inside and outside the classroom, inspiring in them a lifelong commitment to service and citizenship. Out of 167 regional universities in the North, St. Bonaventure was ranked #6 for value and #14 for innovation by U.S. News and World Report (2024).