Canada sweeps USA Eagles in CAN-AM Rugby Series

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April 19, 2014 Victoria, BC (ISN) – Canada’s womens national 15’s team closed out the CAN-AM two game series against the USA Eagles with an impressive 14-10 come from behind win Saturday at Westhills Stadium in Victoria, BC.

After coming away with a surprising 51-7 trouncing against the Eagles in the opening game held at Shawnigan Lake School earlier this week, the Canadian women’s side had no illusions that game two would be a carbon copy game. The Women’s Eagles, with redemption on their minds looked to turn the tables on the explosive maple leaf side.

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Stepanie Bernier spends a little time holding the CAN-AM Cup after a 14-10 win over the USA at Westhills Stadium. – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Coming into game two with a 44 point advantage in the quest for the CAN-AM Cup, head coach Francios Ratier would shuffle his starting lineup, making 8 roster changes to counter USA coach Pete Steinberg’s new 23-player roster shakeup.

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Team Canada lifts the CAN-AM Cup in celebration of their sweep over their USA neighbour – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Canada and the USA have gone head-to-head 28 times with the USA holding onto a 17-11 win advantage. The Canadians won the previous CAN-AM Series in 2010, beating the USA in two straight games.

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Magali Harvey would go 2-3 in penalty kick attempts to kick start her Canadian team – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Both sides would spar defensively in the 1st half, giving each little opportunity to advance the ball up field early in the game. Team Canada would find first opportunity turning loose Kayla Moleschi down the sideline only to be denied entry by a stingy USA wall at the goal line.

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Elissa Alarie, sprinting down field, would score Canada’s only try to put her team ahead late in the game – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

The USA Eagles would break the stalemate at about the 21 minute mark when winger Amanda Street, sprinting the sideline, would post the games first try dragging Canadian tackler Magali Harvey just far enough to put the ball down. The Eagles would continue the pressure on the maple leaf side, scoring a second time before the end on the first half on a try by Sharon Blaney. The half would end 10-0 for the USA in front of a subdued home crowd.

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No shortage of physical play in Saturday’s game as both teams would stand tall defensively most of the game. Amanda Thornborough tries to dislodge the ball from her USA counterpart – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Using this series as a springboard towards the team roster selection for the World Cup held this August in Paris, France, players on both sides, certainly recognizing the importance of their performance in the game and the series would continue to play a tight, but spirited, game in the second half.

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Amanda Thornborough hurdles her would be USA tackler looking onto Meya Bizer as her next challenge – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

In a rain soaked second frame, neither team could capitalize, as both teams would be plagued with mishandling the ball and deny either side from mounting a consistent attack. Falling into penalty trouble, Canada would take advantage of the USA foul trouble, including a yellow card to Kate Daley, assembling a comeback bid and momentum on the boot of Harvey, going 2-3 in penalty kicks to put Canada on the board only down by four points 10-6.

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USA player Amanda Street would break the ice scoring the first try of the game while dragging Team Canada’s Harvey along with her – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Canada’s Elissa Alarie would put her team ahead 11-10 with a try after a tough battle at the goal mark between each teams front lines. Canada, holding off a late surge by the USA, would seal the victory on a penalty kick by Andrea Burke from about the 30 meters out for the 14-10 win.

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Stephanie Bernier pushes the ball out the back line to start up field – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Team Canada will now play Australia and the reigning world champion New Zealand in June before the final roster is decided for Paris.

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Team Canada’s Brittany Benn straight arms Lynelle Kugler in an attempt to break her tackle – Erich Eichhorn ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

 

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