February 18, 2017 Victoria, BC ( ISN ) – The UVic Vikes Women’s sevens team met some stiff competition on day one of the final CWUAA rugby sevens stop of the year despite sitting on top in the standings, going 1-2 against some spirited competition at Wallace Field at the University of Victoria Saturday.
The Vikes, sitting two points ahead of the Calgary Dinos in the inaugural standings, looked to keep ahead of the Dinos throughout the day’s play but couldn’t keep pace with a Calgary team that would run the field with a perfect 3-0 record, falling to the Dinos 12-5 in the final game of the day.
The Vikes would find their only win of the day on their opening match up against the Lethbridge Pronghorns, defeating the fourth seeded team 21-0 on a three-try explosion in the second half. Vikes Chanelle Challenger would open the scoring one minute into the second frame, breaking a mid-field tackle and beat all defenders to solve the scoreless deadlock, taking a 7-0 lead. Stephanie Black, following the example, would put the ball down at the try line a minute and a half later. Maddie Graham would close out the win with her own tally with only three minutes remaining to add to her team’s winning cause.
In a matinee match, the University of Alberta would avenge a season opening 26-21 loss at the Alberta Sevens Tournament to the hands of the Vikes, defeating a surprised Vikes team in a narrow 10-7 result. UVic’s Stephanie Black would score her second try of the day in the first half, breaking from a mid-field tackle to beat Alberta’s wing Jaimie Braybroook who kept pace, albeit one step behind the streaking Black.
Down 7-0 to start the second half, Alberta would narrow the lead on an Alexa Martin try at the six minute mark, however a missed conversion attempt would keep UVic in front 7-5. With less than a minute remaining, Alberta’s Ali Wicham, finding advantage in a loose ball, would use the boot to kick and chase, outrunning her Vikes defender and falling on the ball for a try with time running out, launching her team into the lead and putting Alberta in the win column with a shocker, 10-7 win.
In their third and final match of day one, the Vikes would be paired with the Calgary Dino’s. With a win over the Dinos, sitting only two points behind in the series standings, the Vikes would hope to keep even in the race to close out the season. Defeating Calgary in their only two meetings this year, one could have played the odds, but the Dino’s were not betting. Despite some brilliant UVic passing and speedy play, the Dino’s defense would get the best of the Vikes, creating ball turnovers at opportune times for field advantage and ball possession.
The Dino’s Kelcey Leavitt would open the scoring with the first try of the game; stripped of her team jersey by a willful UVic defender she would run 10 metres for the score to put the first mark on the board. Isla Shill would add try before the end of the half to put the Calgary on top with twelve unanswered points, 12-0. With only thirty seconds remaining the Vike’s Maddie Graham would erase the donut with a game-ending, determined try, dragging Dino’s defender Kelcey Leavitt across the goal line with her.
Sunday will see the Vikes play UBC at 9:25 am, and University of Fraser Valley at 11:25 am to close out the series.
For complete results go to: CWUAA Women’s Sevens Results – UVic