April 19, 2014, LANGFORD, BC (ISN) – Canada’s Women’s head coach Francois Ratier has made eight changes to his starting roster for Saturday’s CAN-AM finale at Westhills Stadium and the Canadian Rugby Centre of Excellence.
Canada holds a 43-point advantage in the chase for the CAN-AM Cup after defeating USA 51-7 to open the two-game series on Tuesday at Shawnigan Lake School. The CAN-AM Cup will be awarded following Saturday’s games in Langford. Canada and USA have faced off on 28 occasions in the past, and USA holds a 17 – 11 advantage.
In the front-row, Marie-Pier Pinault-Ried and Olivia DeMerchant will replace Laura Russell and Hilary Leith, who move to the bench for Game Two. The second-row pairing of Kayla Mack and Latoya Blackwood – who both had stellar games on Tuesday afternoon – remain unchanged for Saturday, while Jacey Murphy replaces Barbara Mervin at blindside flanker.
Eight-of-nine tries from Tuesday were scored in the backs, and Canada will look to repeat that feat on Saturday. However, only three players – scrumhalf Stephanie Bernier, flyhalf Kayla Moleschi and Magali Harvey, who’s now at fullback – remain on Canada’s backline for Saturday’s fixture.
In the centres, Amanda Thornborough and Brittany Benn are set to replace the Capilanos RFC pairing of Andrea Burk and Mandy Marchak. At winger, Canada Sevens players Elissa Alarie and Arielle Dubissette-Borrice will make their first appearances in the CAN-AM Series.
Extras for Canada include Russell, Leith, Ashley MacDonald, Tyson Beukeboom, Cindy Nelles – who could win her first cap for Canada – Julia Sugawara, Burk and Jessica Dovanne.
Kick-off is schedule for 6:30pm ET/3:30pm PT at Westhills Stadium and the Canadian Rugby Centre of Excellence in Langford, BC.
Canada’s Roster for USA test on April 19 – Name, (Club) Hometown
1. Marie-Pier Pinault-Ried, (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, QC
2. Kim Donaldson, (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club) Toronto, ON
3. Olivia DeMerchant, (Woodstock Wildmen) Mapledale, NB
4. Kayla Mack, (Wild Oats RFC) Saskatoon, SK
5. Latoya Blackwood, (St. Anne de Bellevue) Montreal, QC
6. Jacey Murphy, (Aurora Barbarians) Alliston, ON
7. Karen Paquin, (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, QC
8. Kelly Russell, (Toronto Nomads) Bolton, ON
9. Stephanie Bernier, (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, Quebec
10. Kayla Moleschi, (Williams Lake Rustlers) Williams Lake, BC
11. Elissa Alarie, (Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue Rugby Club) Trois-Rivieres, QC
12. Amanda Thornborough (Brandon Barbarians RFC) Brandon, MB
13. Brittany Benn, (Guelph Redcoats) Napanee, ON
14. Arielle Dubissette-Borrice, (Toronto Scottish RFC) Toronto, ON
15. Magali Harvey, (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, QC
16. Laura Russell, (Toronto Nomads) Bolton, ON
17. Hilary Leith, (Capilano RFC/ Saracens) Vancouver, BC
18. Ashley MacDonald, (Halifax Tars) Corran Ban, PEI
19. Tyson Beukeboom, (Aurora Barbarians) Uxbridge, Ontario
20. Cindy Nelles, (Oakville Crusaders/McMaster University) Belleville, ON
21. Julia Sugawara, (Burnaby Lake RFC) Surrey, BC
22. Andrea Burk, (Capilano RFC) North Vancouver, BC
23. Jessica Dovanne, (Velox RFC) Victoria, BC
Senior Women’s Fifteens Staff:
Head Coach: Francois Ratier
Assistant Coach: Gary Dukelow
Assistant Coach: Colette McAuley
Technical Director: John Tait
Strength and Conditioning: Steve Mackinnon
Physiotherapist: Adrienne Stinson and Brad Curry
Manager: Meaghan Howat
Guest Coach: Les Gilson