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Muhn Likes AA Backline

Tuesday Aug 4, 2009 in Elite Level Rugby National Teams

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Cal wing Dustin Muhn gets the call again for the All Americans, forming part of an all-Cal deep three with Colin Hawley and Blaine Scully.

Muhn is the only one of the three not to get senior national team honors (both Scully and Hawley have played for the USA 7s team, and Hawley has a XVs cap as well). But it seems like only a matter of time. Shorter than his schoolmates, Muhn nonetheless possessed outstanding acceleration and is strong and difficult to bring down.

He unleashed some of those skills against Stellenbosch on Friday, running in two tries, including a backbreaker that covered 50 meters and several air-grasping defenders.

“On the turnover ball, I could start to see the opportunity develop on the previous phase, and put myself into position,” said Muhn. “Once I saw that it was on, I was yelling for it, and then for Shepherd to get it to me quick, which he came through on. It just worked out well.”

Muhn still had a lot of work to do, and he added that his time in USA 7s camps has helped.

“The USA 7s program definitely helped me up my game,” said Muhn. “Coach Caravelli's standards as well as the skill level of those around me opened a few doors for me.”

Looking ahead to Wednesday’s game against South Africa Universities, the All Americans have a slight change in their backline, with Duncan Kelm moving in a slot from outside center to inside center, and Dylan Lubbe coming in for Hunter Leland at outside. Scully moves from fullback to wing and Hawley, resting up during the first game, comes in for another USA 7s vet Alex Ross at fullback.

“The backline is coming together every day,” Muhn said. “The more time we spend together, the more comfortable we are with each other, and the game experience really helped us develop under pressure for the upcoming matches. We feel that athleticism and skill to be able to compete on a higher level, but we aren't about to say that we are going to dice anyone up. These South African sides are very talented, and its will be a challenge we will have to rise to. We look forward to it.”

- Alex Goff

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