Mon. May 16th, 2022

Back in August, a group of WCU women’s rugby players went down to Maryland for a preseason tournament to get out playing again. In this tournament, they took on the University of Maryland, easily coming out on top. This was the hopeful outcome of Saturday’s game against the same opponent. But, while the girls did ultimately come out on top, it was not the same domination as last time, as they just slipped by in a 12-10 victory.

Maryland came out playing hard this time. Sasha Stauffer was the first on either side to score in the game. Megan Lamm put the conversion through to give the Rams a 7-0 lead.

That lead was short lived though, as the Terps came right back with two tries of their own. After two missed conversions, Maryland sat on top 10-7, which was the score at the end of the first half.

In the second half, the defense was strong, holding the opponents scoreless, and the offense brought it all together, working Sasha Stauffer in for her second try of the game and the victory.

“It felt good to score two tries, especially the last try of the game, when we definitely needed it,” Stauffer said.

But although the girls came off of the field the victors, they were still disappointed with their performance on the field.

“We should have scored more,” said Erin Furlong.

There were a lot of questionable calls in the game from the officials, the most significant being the first try scored by Maryland. West Chester felt like the girl who scored had committed a penalty coming out of the ruck standing up, which is illegal.

West Chester did also struggle with penalties, committing 17 in the first half alone, to the Terp’s four. The disappointing performance cannot be blamed on the officials though.

“We did a good job at staying positive, but have a lot of things to work on for the upcoming week,” stated Megan Lam, who scored the two point conversion, the deciding factor in the game.

Saturday’s performance revealed that the girls still need to shake off the rust from the off-season and get the basics down pat; mainly passing.

The game showed a lot of bad passing on West Chester’s part, something that needs to be amended before going further into the season.

When West Chester goes up against Penn State, Army, and Navy, their play must be flawless; one bad pass is all it takes against a team of that caliber for the game to switch hands. Good teams will capitalize on mistakes.

Ryan Frisco is a second-year student majoring in communication studies with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at RF648257@wcupa.edu.

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