Game 1 Pool B CIS women’s rugby championship: Marauders edge host Guelph on last second kick


Photos | Recap

Courtesy of University of Guelph Athletics

GUELPH, Ont. (CIS) – Stephanie Black of Oakville, Ont., scored on a penalty kick in the final seconds of the game as the McMaster Marauders came from behind to beat the tournament host Guelph Gryphons 15-13 in the first Pool B contest of the CIS women’s rugby championship at Alumni Stadium, Thursday afternoon.

The Pool B opener was a rematch of last Saturday’s OUA conference final in Hamilton also won by the Marauders, by a 19-10 score.

Once again, the heated rivals took part in a physical first affair that would come down to the wire.

McMaster opened the scoring in the 20th minute on a try from fifth-year winger Kailyn Jones (Port Colborne, Ont.). In the 23rd minute, Emily Cowell (Spencerville, Ont.) was given a yellow card and the Gryphons were able to capitalize with McMaster forced to play one player short for 10 minutes.

At the 24-minute mark, Alexandra King (Ottawa, Ont.) split the uprights from 25 metres out for a penalty kick, trimming McMaster’s lead to 5-3. Seven minutes later, with good support from Shannon Spurrell (Haley Station, Ont.), the Gryphons scored their first try of the match when Rita Charest-Pekeski (Barrie, Ont.) broke through the McMaster line.

The Gryphons led 10-5 at halftime.

In the second period, Sara Svoboda (Belleville, Ont.) showed why she is one of the most highly-touted rookies in the country. Svoboda, a member of the Canadian women’s under-20 team at the Nations Cup, made a great cut and burst through the Guelph line for a try in the 61st minute to give McMaster a 12-10 lead with 19 minutes left in regulation.

With great back-and-forth action taking place all afternoon, the Gryphons took a one-point lead with two minutes remaining after King’s second penalty kick of the match, but Guelph’s 13-12 lead would not hold up.

In the dying moments, McMaster was awarded a penalty deep in Gryphon territory. Black made no mistake from 15 metres out, giving the Marauders a nail-biting 15-13 victory.

After the game, first-year McMaster head coach Shaun Allen referred to the match as “good hard rugby where both teams had tonnes of positives… we were both under pressure at all times. It came down to key decisions and well executed plays.”

Gryphons head coach Colette McAuley said, “it was not the way we wanted to start the Championship, but it is also not how we plan on finishing it. There is still time for us to make a statement and it was a great effort by our team today.”

Svoboda was selected player of the game for McMaster. Daria received the same honour for Guelph.

The Gryphons will be back in action Friday at 1:30 p.m. versus the Ottawa Gee-Gees for their second and final game of the opening round. McMaster will be off Friday and will then take on the Gee-Gees on Saturday afternoon.

MAC 5-10: 15
GUE 10-3: 19

First half
MAC – Kailyn Jones try 20th (convert no good) – (MAC 5 – GUE 0)
GUE – Alexandra King penalty kick 24th – (MAC 5 – GUE 3)
GUE – Rita Charest-Pekeski try 31st (Alexandra King convert) – (MAC 5 – GUE 10)

Second half
MAC – Sara Svoboda try 61st (Stephanie Black convert) – (MAC 12 – GUE 10)
GUE – Alexandra King penalty kick 78th (MAC 12 – GUE 13)
MAC – Stephanie Black penalty kick 80th (MAC 15 – GUE 13)

Players of the game
MAC: Sara Svoboda (Belleville, Ont.)
GUE: Daria Keane (Sarnia, Ont.)

Try: 5 points
Penalty goal: 3 points
Convert: 2 points


Western 1 1 0 0 22 19 4
StFX 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Alberta 1 0 1 0 19 21 1
McMaster 1 1 0 0 15 13 4
Ottawa 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Guelph 1 0 1 0 13 14 1

NOTE 1: A win is worth 4 points and a tie 2 points.
NOTE 2: 1 bonus point is awarded for scoring 4 tries or more in a game.
NOTE 3: 1 bonus point is awarded for a loss by 7 points or less.

Thursday, Oct. 30
10:30 Pool A: Western 22, Alberta 19
13:30 Pool B: McMaster 15, Guelph 13

Friday, Oct. 31
10:30 Pool A: Alberta vs. StFX (
13:30 Pool B: Guelph vs. Ottawa (

Saturday, Nov. 1
10:30 Pool A: Western vs. StFX (
13:30 Pool B: McMaster vs. Ottawa (

Sunday, Nov. 2
10:00 Fifth place: 3rd Pool A vs. 3rd Pool B (
12:00 Bronze medal: 2nd Pool A vs. 2nd Pool B (
14:00 Championship final: 1st Pool A vs. 1st Pool B (

About Canadian Interuniversity Sport

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Scott Harrigan
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