WOLFVILLE, N.S. – Acadia University and Axewomen rugby head coach Matthew Durant are pleased to announce the commitment of four student-athletes for the coming fall including Lauren Melanson, Jessie Bryan, Morgan Faircloth and Ashley Preston.
From Halifax, N.S., Lauren Melanson comes from a rugby back ground that includes the Rugby Canada development program.
As one of the most coveted high-school recruits in Canada this year, Lauren brings an incredible skill set to Acadia. Lauren is coming off time spent with the Nova Scotia Keltics rugby program as well as Rugby Canada’s development program, where she has shown enormous potential.
“Lauren’s strength and speed allow her to play successfully at many positions, and that versatility will make her a great candidate for starting minutes from day one”, noted Durant.
Lauren joins the Axewomen from a talented Halifax West high-school team.
Jessie Bryan, from Windsor, N.S., is a strong, quick and dependable back-three player. Bryan has the ability to start at high competitive level right away, being comfortable under the high-ball and has an incredible kick for a player at her level of development.
Bryan comes from Avon View High School in Windsor – a Nova Scotia high school championship perennial contender.
“We are very excited to see a player of Jessie’s caliber coming to our program. Jessie’s potential to be a finishing winger in our high-tempo attack is exciting”, said Durant.
Durant welcomes two strong forwards from Halifax’s Sir John A. MacDonald High School.
A strong natural athlete, Ashley Preston has the potential to fill many positions in the forward pack. Preston is a member of the Nova Scotia Keltics program and her provincial coach has praised her athleticism and potential as a rugby player.
Morgan Faircloth is also a very tough and strong running back-5 forward. Her strength and skills make her a strong choice to play at either lock or back-row.
“It is very exciting to have Ashley and Morgan joining us this fall. Both players show enormous potential and come with size, strength and toughness. I anticipate these young women will put pressure on our existing forwards and challenge for playing time immediately”, said Durant.
“I have been extremely impressed with the progress of rugby in Nova Scotia under the guidance of Jack Hanratty, particularly within the women’s game. Nova Scotia is producing some of the best female rugby players in the country and we are so pleased to be welcoming these ladies, among others, to our program”, added Durant.
The Axewomen open the 2018 season at home on Saturday, September 9 against the visiting UPEI Panthers at 2:00 p.m.