Cape Town - A convincing 63-8 victory over CUT in Pretoria saw UP-Tuks move past the unbeaten UFS-Shimlas to the top of the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International standings.
The Free State side claimed a last-gasp 23-21 victory over NMMU in Port Elizabeth, but that was not enough to keep their place at the top of the log as the rampant UP-Tuks moved past them on points difference.
There were also wins for the two Cape sides as three-time champions Maties notched their first win of the season by edging UJ 16-15 in Stellenbosch, while UCT beat NWU-Pukke 40-21 in a replay of last year's final in Potchefstroom.
UP-Tuks were ruthless in their demolition of CUT, running in nine tries to pile more pain on the newcomers who have suffered heavy defeats in every game of their debut season thus far.
After conceding three early tries, the NMMU Madibaz fought back bravely at home against UFS-Shimlas, only to have their hearts broken by a late penalty which leaves them languishing in seventh place with just one win.
Maties were also made to work hard for their victory, having gone 15-0 behind against UJ at one stage in Stellenbosch, but second-half tries from Beyers de Villiers and Jacobus van der Merwe were just enough to secure a narrow victory for the home side.
Flank Jason Klaasen grabbed a hat-trick in Potchefstroom as defending champions UCT moved up to third place on the standings with a convincing win over NWU-Pukke who drop down to fifth position with just two rounds left before the play-offs.
In the Varsity Shield there were big wins for pace-setters Wits and UKZN to pull even further away from the chasing pack.
Wits registered a record 93-0 victory over Fort Hare in Johannesburg and the UKZN Impi waltzed to a 66-41 win against TUT Vikings in Pretoria.
The third round of the Varsity Young Guns saw wins for defending champions UFS, two-time champions UP-Tuks, NMMU and the UCT Trojans.
UFS beat NWU-Pukke in Potchefstroom, UP-Tuks proved too strong for UJ in Pretoria, NMMU overpowered CUT in Port Elizabeth and UCT claimed the Cape bragging rights by beating the Junior Maties in Stellenbosch.In the Steinhoff Koshuisrugby Championships Steinhoff Mopanie continued their winning ways by beating the Steinhoff Tigers to move to the top of the log, Steinhoff Patria proved too strong for the Steinhoff Stallions and Steinhoff Medies beat the Steinhoff Cobras 40-0 in Stellenbosch.