Women’s rugby wins big over NIU 113-7

Phil Brahm | Staff Reporter

Taking the pitch carrying momentum from their second place finish at Ruggapalooza, the women’s rugby team faced Northern Illinois University, Sunday in their first conference match of the season.

Stepping off the bus in DeKalb, Illinois the Lions looked to continue their offensive dominance after scoring a total of 105 points over a course of five games, last weekend.

It would only take them a matter of minutes to hit the scoreboard with two scores by freshman Arianna Lewis, making the score 10-0 only five minutes into the match. In an attempt to match Lewis’ efforts, sophomore captain Davon Thomas, who was able to barrel through the Huskies’ defense, quickly making the score 20-0 after two breakaway scores.

While the Lions sat 20 points ahead with just ten minutes expired from the clock, no sympathy was shown as they continued to claw away at NIU’s defense. LU reached a total of 48 points by the 28th minute of play, surpassing the final score totals for each of their games at Ruggapalooza.

It would not be until a miscue by the Lions, that the Huskies would score their first and only points of the game. At the half the score would sit at 59-7.

Despite the overwhelming lead, the physical attack of LU remained intact with the experienced play of junior captain Amanda Divich playing alongside junior Morgan Michaud. Combative play by junior Kim Shepard and senior Morgan Crowell, also contributed to the offensive assault as they sought out several gaps for their teammates.

Over the course of the match junior Tianna Camous would once again emerge as a dominating figure for the defensive play for LU, as she created a nightmare for NIU. Through a series of textbook tackles, she left several Huskies slow to return to their feet.

The Lions’ would add 54 more points to their score before the game came to its conclusion. With a final score of 113-7, they were able to improve their top score at Ruggapalooza by 80 points.

Head coach Billy Nicholas was pleased with the overall performance of this team and noted that they achieved exactly what they set out to accomplish.

“The girls wanted to set the tone today with their first conference match of the season,” Nicholas said. “They did just that.

“This is a new chapter for LU women’s rugby and we came out fired up. It is going to be an exciting time here for this program the next few years and today showed just that.”

The Lion’s will continue their season this weekend as they head to Grand Rapids, Michigan to face Davenport University on Sept. 13.