Mixed results in rugby

Women’s ruggers struggling to move the ball against Guelph.
Women’s ruggers struggling to move the ball against Guelph.

The mens’ varsity rugby team followed up on their win over Brock last weekend with another narrow victory Saturday, defeating the U of T Blues 17-15 in Toronto.

For the second week in a row, the Gaels dominated play, but they were unable to capitalize on their opportunities. Spencer Cameron, a fourth-year second row player, drew some close parallels between the team’s efforts against Brock and U of T. “Just like last week, we played better than the other team, but we get too jumpy out there,” he said.

“We’ll have the ball and make some progress, but against Brock and U of T there’s been this feeling that if we don’t score on the first two phases of a play, then something has to happen right away, and we end up forcing the issue and making mistakes.”

Fourth-year hooker Luke Dinely agreed.

“The same thing happens on defence,” he said. “We get too aggressive trying to make the big play and end up taking too many penalties.” Those penalties proved costly on Saturday, as all 15 of Toronto’s points came from the boot of the Blues’ fly-half. By contrast, the Queen’s offence came in the form of three hard-earned tries.

The Gaels’ scoring started in the first half, when the Queen’s forward pack drove a maul over the Blues’ try line, with Cameron touching the ball down. The other two tries came on very similar plays early in the second half, when the Gaels recovered the ball deep in the Blues’ zone after a pair of re-start kicks , and Dinely and Jordan Foley touched down in the try zone after a few short passes from fly-half Dave Poettcker.

The intensity of the team’s season will rise another notch this Wednesday evening, when the Gaels take on Carleton in Ottawa. Queen’s will be looking for some revenge against the team that defeated them in last season’s OUA bronze-medal game.

Meanwhile, the women’s team was also in action Saturday, against the Guelph Gryphons, losing 19-5 on Kingston Field. In their first game of the season, the Gaels came out of the gate well and played evenly with Guelph for most of the first half.

However, the momentum of the game took a serious turn away from the Gaels, when Guelph scored a try just before the end of the first half. For the rest of the match, Queen’s struggled with their organization on both sides of the ball.

Guelph scored again early in the second half, and while the Gaels responded with an unconverted try a few minutes later, the Gryphons scored again to make the final score 19-5 in favour of the visitors.

The women will take the field again next Saturday when they visit the Waterloo Warriors.

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