Another great 15's season has come and gone for the UMWRFC! There was a lot of development and formation of key set-pieces going into the start of this season. Recruitment also went well as we managed to go the duration of the season with almost enough players for two full rosters! With spirits high and a legacy to live up to, the team went into the season ready to play some of the best rugby of our lives! Check out the gallery below for a picture from each of our matches this season!
9/9 - Indiana U
The season started early with what would be the first of many trips to Indiana. This first match was an away league match against Indiana University the first weekend of the semester. It was a great day for rugby and after a hard-fought match Indiana proved to be formidable foes, ending the match with a score of UMWRFC 0 - 24 IU.
9/16 - Alumnae Weekend
The following weekend was an exciting one as it was our Alumnae Weekend! Overall, it was an amazing weekend of fun and rugby. The Alumnae were as fierce as usual and experience bested youth 53-5, with the UMWRFC's try made by Annie Pellegrini! This match was a great chance for everyone to catch up, the alumnae to show off their experience, the UMWRFC to prep for the rest of the season, and the rookies to play their first ever rugby match!
9/22 - Penn State
We were home again on Mitchell Field the next week with a league match against the Penn State. The Nittany Lions proved themselves to be a tough competitor as usual and after an intense 80 minutes, the final score was UMWRFC 5 - 101 Penn State with a try made by Emily Carlson. However, the day didn't end there as Penn State joined us to play a B-side match with our rookies. It was a great chance for them to get some real experience against a formidable opponent and we left feeling satisfied with a score of UMWRFC 5 - 53 Penn State with a try made by Vicky Whydell!
9/30 - Notre Dame
The following weekend we were back on the road to Indiana to go head to head against Notre Dame. It was a sunny day, great for a rugby match and after lots of back and forth play, both teams left the pitch having played their best with a final score of UMWRFC 5 - 26 Notre Dame with a Michigan try by Jill Cwycyshyn.
10/13 - Michigan State
We had an unexpected by-week following our match against Notre Dame after a veritable monsoon caused us to reschedule our 10/6 home match against Michigan State. Luckily, our teams were able to meet up the following weekend, under much better weather conditions, but this time on MSU's home turf. It was a beautiful day for rugby, bright and brisk, and the team left the pitch after having played some true Michigan rugby with a final score of UMWRFC 26 - 31 MSU.
10/20 - Purdue
The team traveled back to Indiana the following weekend to take on Purdue University. The team went onto the pitch ready to play some quality rugby and left the pitch with a 83-0 win over Purdue. The chemistry among the team was incredible and Lea Boreland, Emma Buis, Emily Carlson, Jill Cwycyshyn, Hannah Hoover, Iman Mamnoon, Lindsay Maxey, Dana Nathanson, and Vicky Whydell all scored tries, with Dana Nathanson also kicking some great conversions.
10/27 - Kent State
The next weekend, our penultimate match of the season, was an exciting one as it was our Family Weekend. It was also our last home match of the season with our seniors: Lea Boreland, Emily Carlson, Neo Huiyuan, Dana Nathanson, Jeethi Nair, Roxy Tanginya, and Vicky Whydell. All of this made the match a special one, and the team went out onto that pitch with everything they had. Amazing plays were made along with some incredible tries by Lea Boreland, Christa Hansma, Vanessa Rojano, and Vicky Whydell, not to mention a conversion by Dana Nathanson. After a tough match and plenty of rain, the UMWRFC came out on top with a final score of 27-17 over Kent State.
11/4 - Northwestern
The season ended with a westward getaway to Chicago, IL. The team left early Saturday morning to get into the heart of downtown Chicago in time to see the Rugby Weekend at Soldier Field. Then Sunday, we headed north to Evanston for a team breakfast and our friendly against Northwestern. The weather was absolutely brutal: a constant downpour and harsh winds brought upon by Lake Michigan, which bordered the pitch. After three intense 20 minute periods, and some stunning tries made by Lea Boreland, Roxy Tanginya, and Iman Mamnoon along with a conversion by Vicky Whydell, the UMWRFC emerged victorious with a score of 47-0 over Northwestern.
In the end, it was an amazing season of hard-work and dedication coupled with lots of fun. Despite the injuries and the uncooperative weather, it was still an incredible season of learning and growth. The vets did an amazing job of showing the rookies the ropes and we couldn't have asked for a better first season with Coach Frech. Now, with all the knowledge and experience we gained this season, we're geared up and ready to start our Winter 2019 7's season!