Women’s rugby ends regular season undefeated after 71-8 win

By Amber DeFabio and Gabriella Ciaccio

Captain Amy Skotek begins to ruck over flanker Amber DeFabio Photo by Sean Cobb
Captain Amy Skotek begins to ruck over flanker Amber DeFabio Photo by Sean Cobb

The KU women’s rugby team remains undefeated after winning against the University of Delaware 37-12 on Oct. 24 and against Drexel University 71-8 this past Saturday.

The homecoming game on Oct. 24 brought out a huge crowd. Friends and family came to support the Golden Bears as they faced their U-Del rival.

So far this season, KU had had issues with their defensive realignment as well as their launch before the point of contact. This issue is what led to U-Del scoring the first two tries of the game as senior prop Chante Vann barreled through KU’s defense twice.

The excitement and suspense surged through the crowd, as Delaware was winning by a two point margin in the first half with a score of 12-10 after KU tries were scored by senior flyhalf Mary Cate Matta and senior number eight Amber DeFabio.

What seemed to be KU’s saving grace was the Golden Bears’ fitness level. During the second half, KU scored 27 points, winning the game by a 25 point margin.

“I believe in holding my players accountable and in fitness,” KU Head Coach Sean Cobb said.

Freshman wing Leah Keyser, senior inside center Taylor Sandin (2), freshman wing CJ Dickison, and sophomore Natalie Flaim scored tries during the second half. Matta added kicked a conversion.

On Halloween, the Golden Bears maintained their winning streak yet again, winning by 63 points against Drexel.

“Drexel gave us an opportunity to work out the kinks in our system and to prepare for the upcoming games this weekend,” said junior outside center Danielle Ashway. “Going into the game, I was feeling confident in the team, and I was ready to try out everything in our playbook.”

However, the KU women let Drexel dominate the first 20 minutes of the game until the Dragons scored their first three points through the upright. From there, the Golden Bears shut Drexel down with tries scored by Flaim (5), junior hooker Paige Trock (2), Dickison (2), DeFabio, and junior number eight Amy Skotek. Matta tacked on 16 more points with eight conversions.

The Golden Bears will face East Stroudsburg University during the semi-finals this Saturday. Bloomsburg University will be facing U-Del on the same day. The winner of each game will contend for the title on Sunday. Predictably, KU and Bloom will be battling on the second day.

“Going into the semi-finals, we are going to be facing more challenging teams,” said senior wing Alyssa Fama. “We will see what we are doing well, and what we still need to work on to succeed.”

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