Formed 2004 ... Herts 7s U14 Runners-up 2005 ... North Herts U14 team, Herts Youth Games 2005 runners-up (coached by Letchworth)... Herts Superteams U14 Runners-up 2005 ... Herts SuperTeams "Fairplay" winners 2006 ... Rochford 10s U17 Champions 2006 ... East Midlands 10s U17 Runners-up 2007 ... East Midlands 10s U17 "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... National 10s U17 5th place and "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... Herts 7s U17 Plate runners-up 2007 ... National 7s U17 Plate winners 2007 ... RFU "President's XV" Award winners 2007 ... Herts Superteams winners 2007 ... Midlands 10s U18 Runners-up 2008 ... National 10s U18 4th place 2008 ... North Herts U11 team, Herts Youth Games 2008 runners-up (coached by Letchworth girls) ... London and SE 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2008 ... Herts 7s U18s runners-up 2008 ... National 7s U18s quarter-finalists 2008 ... Gloucester City 10s U18 Bowl runner-up (6th) 2009 ... Worthing 10s U18 Plate runner-up 2009 ... National 7s U18 Plate winners 2009... Worthing 10s U15 Plate winners 2010... Worthing 10s U18 Shield winners 2010... Herts 7s U15 and U18 Bowl runners-up 2010... National 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2010...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

News from Canada: Weldon compete for the Ontario title

Meanwhile 3,000 miles away or so our Easter tourists I E Weldon have been competing in their Provincial championship - well, they were about 10 days ago or so but the reports in their local paper have only just reached me. Already champions of central Ontario (COSSA) they were seeded at number 2 for the Ontario title in a competition that included 15 other regional champions (girls' rugby is a seriously big game in Ontario!).

Weldon went into the event with more games under their belts than anyone else - 23 games, and 20 wins. A first round game saw them up against Senator O'Connor C.S. from Toronto, who they brushed aside 30-0. Lauren Wizowski scored two tries, Courtney Phinney, Laura Plahuta and Amanda Staples and "our" Robin Callaghan added a try each.

Next up, however, was Glenview Panthers, from Cambridge Ontario who were unaccountably seeded only 7 despite an unbeaten 20-game season.

Playing into what sounds like something of a gale didn't help our heros whose main strength - as we saw- tended to be their passing and running. The Wildcats had the wind at their back in the first half, but they were halted by Glenview Park's strong (well the paper says "punishing") defence. Glenview Park sneaked a 5-0 lead at halftime, and then added two more tries in the second half.

Moreover for some reason Weldon's basic play sounds like it fell to pieces a bit (had they been celebrating, Letchworth-style, the first round win?)and they made a number of mistakes when it had the ball.

Coach Kirk Wilson said that "Our own possessions were really our downfall" and added that Weldon's tackling wasn't as crisp and sound as it usually is, which led to even more problems.

"We missed some tackles," he said. "They weren't blatant misses, we just didn't tackle them enough to put them on the ground and allow our defence to get set again."

After the loss, the Wildcats were assigned what the Canadians call a "friendly match" (essentially a classification game) with Applewood Heights (from Peterborough, Ontario... could almost be an East Anglian competition going by the place names!) for fifth place with Weldon winning end of an close game 27-24.

"It was a great win," Kirk said. "The season ended on a positive note."

In her final game as a Wildcat, Number 8 Corie Lewis scored three tries. Lauren Wizowski and Laura Plahuta adding the other two, with Lauren adding a conversion. Amanda Staples also played her last game but it sounds like the rest of the squad will still be together next season (sounds like another team I can think of!) so Kirk is confident that they could win their local title next year at least. Kirk expects that Lauren Wizowski and Robin will provide take the lead next season (so no chance that Robin might be able to make a few games for her other team...).

Full scores and score information can be found here.

PS: Incidentally it is fascinating to see the reports on rugby in Canada, where in every case they talk about either "boys' rugby" or "girls' rugby". Compare and contrast that to here where its "rugby" or "girls' rugby". Sometimes a innocent thing like a prefix (or lack of one) says so much...

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