Men's rugby victorious in home opener

Gaels register 40-0 win over Brock

Trevor Helgason (top left) reaches for the ball during a lineout.
Trevor Helgason (top left) reaches for the ball during a lineout.
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After a tough loss at the start of the season, men’s rugby found themselves back on top on Sunday afternoon.

The Gaels (1-1), who come into this season as three-time defending OUA champions, fell 35-28 to the Guelph Gryphons on Wednesday night before recording a dominant 40-0 victory on Sunday over the Brock Badgers. It was the Gaels’ first loss to Guelph since 1998, who finished 7-1 last season and lost to Queen’s in the OUA final.

While the loss to Guelph may not have been an ideal start to the season, spirits were high after the victory over Brock.

“We’re putting in some of our systems now,” Jeffrey MacDonald said. “It’s starting to come together nicely.”

The fifth-year centre added that the Gaels’ strong defensive performance was a highlight in Sunday’s victory.

“The zero on the scoreboard is pretty nice,” he said, in reference the Badgers’ lack of points. 

Queen’s captain Lucas Rumball led the way, scoring a try in each game. Teddy Taggart, Will McArthur, Ryan Aimers, Trevor Helgason and Marc Levin added tries in the victory over Brock, while first year Alex Colborne was kicking conversions on the day, making five of six.

MacDonald, who’s in his final year with the Gaels and a three-time champion himself, said he knows his play this season will be important to the team’s success.

“I just try to lead by example and do what I can on the field,” he said.

Despite having a strong contingent of upper-year players, MacDonald said new players also have a role to play.

“We’ve got a whole bunch of new guys coming in to the team and they’re looking great so far,” he said. “Now it’s just about getting the chemistry with them, getting the team unity together.”

Although the margin of victory on Sunday was quite large, MacDonald was adamant that it can’t go to their heads.

“We can’t get caught up on ourselves,” he said. “We just have to take it week by week and focus on the team that’s ahead of ourselves and how we can exploit their defence and how we can stop their offence.”

The Gaels’ next game is on the road against Waterloo on Sunday at 1 p.m. Waterloo comes into the game with a 1-0 record. Queen’s defeated Waterloo 69-5 when the two teams met last season.

“We obviously want to win,” MacDonald said. “We want to go back and get that fourth [OUA Championship] in a row, but right now it’s just sort of building every week.”

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