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SARFC women come into their own

Amazing 142-0 win for St. Albert ladies

By: By Alex MacPherson

  |  Posted: Wednesday, Jul 16, 2014 06:00 am

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The St. Albert Rugby Club women’s team absolutely dismantled the Parkland Sharks in what must be close to a local record for lopsidedness, 142-0 in the season opener Thursday night.

“I’m really proud of how the game was played,” said Byron Elliott, coach of the SARFC Women. “The girls had been on the other side of losses like that and could have been arrogant or emotional, but they played with a lot of class. The game was played in great spirit.”

The SARFC women had started the seeding round strong with a 67-0 win over the hosting Rockers. They had four straight wins before stalling their streak and losing three of their next four.

“It was only last year that the girls were on the other end of losses like this,” said Elliott. “The older girls were going up to the Sharks players and telling them, ‘It’s okay. We’ve been there. You can come back from these games.’ I think it showed a lot of spirit.”

The Sharks are scoreless this year and are on pace for a tough season. It’s a feeling that the SARFC players understand.

“The Sharks never gave up or let the score get to them,” said Jasmine Fleming of the SARFC. “The Sharks are fielding this team for the first time this year. In a lot of ways they’re like we were two years ago. They just haven’t found their feet yet.”

Thursday’s game was indicative of how much the SARFC women’s team has grown and evolved in just a few years.

“It did feel good to be on the right side of a score like that this time,” said Fleming.

The rapid improvement of the club has been incredible to watch.

“A big difference for us has been with the coaching and staff,” said Fleming. “But there has also been a change in the general attitude. When we started a lot of people we called just wouldn’t show up to games. Now you have to compete to get on the field.”

The wild score opened up the game for the SARFC to call up some younger players and try some new plays. U19 player McKenzie Pusch took the field by storm and scored five tries for the SARFC.

“It feels great to look at how much team has changed,” said Fleming. “A few years ago we were really struggling. Now we’re developing talent and challenging top teams. We are competitive in this division.”

Coach Elliot has plans to keep the team improving and honing their skills.

“I want to work on our tackles, actually,” said Elliott. “There are things to work on every game no matter what the score is. I didn’t like the tackles I was seeing and let the girls know about it.”

On Saturday the SARFC take on the Sirens in a rematch that has been two months in the making. The SARFC beat the Sirens 47-22 in May when the teams last met.

The Sirens won their first two games of the season and sit at the top of the standings in the early season.


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