Raiders 38 Cougars 10
The Lindsay Thurber Raiders girls rugby team showed that the need for speed even has a place on the pitch Wednesday night at Titans Park.
Early and often the Raiders worked the ball outside and were able to run wild in the second half to clinch a 38-10 win over Notre Dame, earning the tier 1 central zone title. The victory also secured a berth in provincials.
Lindsay Thurber head coach Bill Bowd said in high school girls rugby getting the ball to their backs is the key to success.
“Trying to get it out to our backs and get it out wide so we can get it out wide and go for a run,” he explained.
“Most teams in high school don’t cover that very well. That way we can get it wide and we have fast enough people that we can support it if they are tackled.”
Grade 12 back Morgan deBoon, in just her first year of rugby was vital to the Raiders success in the win, scoring multiple trys and driving the ball forward all game long. She credited her teammates for her growth this season.
“My whole team has really helped me the whole year. Literally teaching me the rules, all I knew was pass the ball backwards. It’s a really good team atmosphere,” she said.
The Raiders only led 12-10 at half, but the Bowd said a tired Notre Dame team and the push from his squad changed the dynamic of the contest.
“Was a real close first half. Mistakes on both sides then in the second half, I think the way we played, outplayed them,” Bowd said.
“They just weren’t able to keep up with the momentum we had going. Any time in rugby if you have the other team going backwards, you should win.”
Cougars head coach Ian Rattan added that despite the score, he was proud of the way his team played all season long and in the final.
“The girls battled hard the entire game, the score was nowhere indicative of how hard fought the game was,” he said.
“They had some big plays and we made a few mistakes, but that’s life. I was extremely happy with the way our girls battled the entire 60 minutes. There was no real let down. We kept fighting the whole way. Just a great game.”
Last year it was the Cougars who represented the zone at tier 1 provincials, but this year, deBoon is happy her team gets the chance to represent the region.
“The jump, even just from commitment, everyone has come together and realized that if we want to make it to provincials, which we did that we really had to come together,” she said.
The Lindsay Thurber girls will travel to Sherwood Park for provincials on June 9 and 10.