Even though the game started a half hour later than expected...even though it was sprinking out...even though the temps were barely in the 50's...even though the Lady Gryphons were outsized...the Waconia girls managed to defeat the Goliath-esque Rogers team 19-10! The Waconia girls banded together like no other game before this, working the mauls, the rucks, the scrums and the open play to slowly but surely work the ball down the field. Although Waconia was denied three possible trys that the scrummies drove in because the sir couldn't get a good look at the ball, the girls never stopped fighting! The scrummies did a fantastic job in the first try, winning most of the scrums to get the ball out to the backs. The backs followed with more great play, taking advantage of the space provided by Rogers, passing the ball quickly and cleanly down the line to run it up the sidelines for a try. Alyssa Hennen brought the ball in to score two times, Emily Ludwigson once. Emily was able to make two conversion kicks, due to the heads up play of the backs to bring the ball to the center of the try zone. Mira Thauren did a great job of hassling the other team, almost always being there on the tackles, Lindsay Harder had a phenomenal run up the sidelines, Michelle Citarella did a fine job in the lineouts, Darlynna Khonkhammy hooked wonderfully...the list goes on and on! The domination of the rucks, mauls, and scrums was a HUGE part of this victory! Kelsey Sorenson frequently was seen fighting over the ball, setting the tone of the play! The girls played as a TEAM...that was the key to this victory!
On April 21st, the Lady Gryphons traveled to Moundsview, with barely a full roster of players. Other committments and injuries left the team with just three subs. The Moundsview team was able to slip up the sidelines, and break through Waconia's pack to score a before unheard of 60 points.
Even though the day started earlier than the girls could have even imagined...leaving the high school at 6:30...the day turned out to be an excellent day for rugby! Sunny, no wind, temps in the high 70's. The first game was hard, the girls took a tough loss to South Metro. Their backs got the ball, headed for the sidelines and like a shot, they were down the field! The Gryphons fell to Hopkins in the third game, also a Tier I team. Although the Waconia girls were quite outsized by the Goliathesque Hopkins, we did a great job slowing down their progress down the field. Hopkins did not get any breakaways, they had to fight their way down the field one meter at a time.
What a great day for rugby...sunny...temps in the 70's...lots of spectators! The Waconia sidelines were filled with fans of all ages for the Lady Gryphons home opener on Sunday, April 11th. The girls took on Chisago Lakes 2, and after a hard fought battle, lost 12-5. Kelsey Woodland ran in the only try for the Girls Rugby Club. The Chisago Lakes club was a tough club, they definitely outsized the Waconia girls. Waconia's scrum was almost unbeatable, they hooked back most of the puts, even if they weren't Waconia's. The Waconia girls played a technically sound game of rugby, with much fewer penalties than Chisago Lakes.
Even though they were the newcomers, Waconia Girls Rugby put on a fantastic show against some seasoned competition! The Lady Gryphons lost to Hastings 12-0, but they still dominated the play. The loss was due more to inexperience than skill. Waconia had the ball near the opposing try line several times throughout the game. Waconia's scrum completely dominated Hastings throughout the first half of the match. The Hastings coach was surprised at how well Waconia played for being so new to the sport.