Ontario defeats British Columbia in National Women’s League final


QUEBEC CITY – British Columbia’s senior women’s provincial team were defeated 26-12 on Sunday in the National Women’s League championship final at Laval University in Quebec.

Facing off against Ontario in the national final for the fifth time in six years, BC conceded 10 points in the opening quarter and were unable to rally back.

Canadian national team and Ontario standouts Brooke Hilditch and Cheryl Phillips combined for 10 points in the opening minutes and with a try from Megan Gibbs, led 15-5 at the half. BC’s first half score was recorded by Hilary Leith (Capilano RFC).

Phillips added another six points through two penalties to extend Ontario’s lead to 21-5 early in the second half. BC and national team half back Julia Sugawara (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club) sparked an offensive run in the second half dotting down and then converted her own try to cut the lead to 21-12.

Ontario’s Lori Josephson put the game out of reach, however, crossing the goal line in the final 10 minutes to make it 26-12.

“The telling sign of the game was [Ontario] were very responsible with the ball and they made fewer mistakes than we did,” said BC head coach Pat Fleck. “We had too many handling errors at key moments and the penalty count was much higher on our side. We looked dangerous when we had the ball and created opportunities, but we turned the ball over just a little too often. Ontario didn’t cut us apart anywhere in particular and I would say we took it to them in the set pieces.”

Featuring a lineup with several graduates from last year’s U20 and U23 provincial programs, BC went 1-2 at the 2012 tournament, losing to Ontario 39-24 on Thursday and defeated 2011 champions Alberta 31-15 on Friday.

“I think the BC girls have improved a lot from when we started out,” Fleck added. “They certainly played with pride and respect but overall against Ontario it just came down to committing a few more errors than they did.”

Match Sheet – Ontario vs BC – July 1, 2012

11 :20 Ont. penalty by #15. Cheryl Phillips

15 :45 Ont. try by #10. Brooke Hilditch

16 :30 Ont. convert by #15. Cheryl Phillips

25 :15 ONT try by #7. Megan Gibbs

30 :47 BC try by #5. Hillary Leith

46 :15 Ont. Penalty by #15. Cheryl Phillips

57 :30 Ont. Penalty by #15. Cheryl Phillips

60 :00 BC try by #10. Julia Sugawara

60 :51 BC convert by #10. Julia Sugawara

71 :00 Ont. try by #11. Lori Josephson

BC results at NWL Finals

2012 Runners-up

2011 Third Place

2010 National Champions

2009 Runners-up

2008 National Champions

2007 National Champions

BC Senior Women Roster – 2012

Name – position (club)

Jocelyn Barrieau – Wing/Scrum Half (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Christina Burnham – Scrum Half (Simon Fraser University)

Sarah Byers – Lock (Simon Fraser University)

Amanda Campbell – Fly Half (Velox Valkyries)

Kim Donaldson – Hooker/Prop (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Marlene Donaldson – Prop (Velox Valyries)

Jessica Dovanne – Wing/Centre (Velox Valkyries)

Sarah Gordon – Fly Half (Bayside Athletic Association)

Corinne Jacobsen – Prop (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Shannon Kane – Back Row (Velox Valkyries)

Sagal-Marie Kahin – Lock (Meraloma Rugby Club)

Jozefina Kola – Centre (United Rugby Club)

Hilary Leith – Prop (Capilano RFC)

Devon Luca – Scrum Half (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Carolyn McEwen -Prop (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Alicia Noger – Lock/Back Row (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Jesse Olynyk – Back Row (Velox Valkyries)

Paniz Pahlavanlu – Back Row/Back (United Rugby Club)

Samantha Robb – Back Row (Velox Valkyries)

Stevi Schnoor – Centre (United Rugby Club)

Julia Sugawara – Fly Half (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Natalie Tam – Wing/Scrum Half (Velox Valkyries)

Brittany Waters – Full Back/Centre (Meraloma Rugby Club)

Emily Young – Wing (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club)

Team Staff

Head Coach – Pat Fleck

Assistant Coach – Rhodri Hanmer

Manager – Chelsey Minter

Athletic Therapist – Monique Charbonneau

2012 NWL Results

June 28, 12:00pm – Game A: Ontario 39 – 24 British Columbia

June 28, 2:30pm – Game B: Alberta 31 – 16 Quebec

June 29, 12:00pm – Game C: Ontario 46 – 21 Quebec

June 29, 2:30pm – Game D: Alberta 15 – 31 British Columbia

July 1, 10:30am – 3rd/4th playoff: Quebec 22 – 23 Alberta

July 1, 1:00pm 1st/2nd playoff: Ontario 26 – 12 British Columbia

Christian J. Stewart
Christian is a professional photographer and media professional based in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Currently working as the Assistant General Manager for Victoria HarbourCats Baseball Club, a Senior Contributing Editor and photographer at Independent Sports News (ISN) and operating his own freelance photography and media/pr company.