Women’s rugby opens strong, shuts out Bennington 21-0

Last Saturday morning, Williams Women’s Rugby Football Club (WWRFC) arrived in Bennington, Vt., to play against the Bennington’s women’s club, only to be alarmed by both the frigid weather and children running amuck on the pitch. Despite these obstacles, Williams persisted, coming out on top 21-0 at the end of the day.

The game began with a beautiful kick from co-captain Hannah Rosenthal ’10 which soared down the pitch. Following Rosenthal’s lead, the entire team barreled down to the opponent’s 5-meter line. Only met with slight resistance, Colleen Fitzpatrick ’12 and Bethany Baker ’10 proceeded to charge and tackle Bennington’s forward players. Rosenthal quickly took possession of the ball and landed the White Dawgs’ first try of the spring season. Sarah Franklin ’10 made the conversion with an impressive kick through the uprights, putting her team ahead 7-0.

Halfway through the game, a fantastic maul was set up by the White Dawg scrummies. After a long and successful drive past Bennington’s 22-meter line, Xiomara Pinto ’12 stripped the ball and popped it to Rosenthal. This excellent assist ensured the White Dawgs’ second try of the game. After another successful conversion by fly-half Franklin, the women were able to head into halftime with a decisive 14-0 lead.

The second half of the game featured the debut of several impressive substitutes. Rookie Sarah Plunkett ’10 demonstrated a beastly zeal for the sport with her zippy sprints up the side of the pitch, while Mai Okimoto ’13 took charge as strong wing, consistently supporting her teammates on the side of the pitch. As prop, Dilia Ortega ’13 quickly learned that no one could take her down. Though having never played the position of flanker, Aubree Stephens ’12 proved that she could in fact fit in anywhere. A sudden skirmish at the very end of the game resulted in Rosenthal’s third try of the day, bringing the final score to White Dawgs 21, Bennington 0. In the words of Head Coach Gina Coleman, “We could not have asked for a better game to start our spring season.”

WWRFC will be away on Saturday, heading to Western Connecticut State to play at 11 a.m. and hoping to build on last weekend’s success.

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