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Rebels roll over Medicine Hat

Posted on April 23, 2014 by Taber Times

W.R. Myers girls rugby team showed some impressive play on the field again last week in matches against Cardston and Medicine Hat High.

Monday’s rescheduled road contest against Cardston saw the senior-varsity match result in a 17-17 draw, where, according to co-coach Andrew Llewelyn-Jones, had the Rebels had a little more time, they likely would have pulled off the victory in the seesaw affair.

“It was a very well-fought game. The girls started off a little slow before they got their mojo together,” said Llewelyn-Jones. The match saw the Rebels fall behind 10-0 early.

The Rebels would race ahead 12-10, and fall back to a 17-12 deficit before the Rebels tied it up late.

“The last 10 to 15 minutes of the second half, Myers was basically camped in the Cardston half the whole time. Aside from a few handling errors, if we hadn’t have had them, it probably would have meant we would have gone ahead of them,” said Llewelyn-Jones.

“The girls fought extremely hard. They started off slow, but came back with a bang and tackled extremely well. Overall aspects of the game, the rucking is improving, tackling is excellent, handling is starting to come together. Being a cold and windy day, it did impact some of the handling.”

With cold and blustery conditions, Llewelyn-Jones was pleased to see his squad not fold up the tent early in the 10-0 deficit, instead preferring to fight back into the match.

“Sometimes it’s easy just to roll over and we saw that a little bit last year when we’d go down early. But this year, these girls have a lot of fight in them and they clawed their way back into that game. At the end of the game, Cardston felt lucky to come away with the tie,” said Llewelyn-Jones. “The senior varsity team was pressing so hard on the Cardston defence.”

The junior varsity match against Cardston was a dominating 41-0 Rebels win.

“Each game we are improving where the tackling was way better, the rucking is getting better, but still not where we’d like to see it. Running with the ball was great where we really dominated the Cardston team,” said Llewelyn-Jones.

The handling was something the Rebels worked on the Tuesday before last Wednesday’s match against Medicine Hat of catching the high ball, etc. With Medicine Hat not having enough players to form a junior varsity team, the result was a lopsided 79-0 blowout by the Rebels at Ken McDonald Memorial Sports Park last Wednesday.

“They had some younger players on that team, mostly Grade 10s with some Grade 9s in there to go with a few Grade 11s and Grade 12s,” said Llewelyn-Jones of the undersized Medicine Hat squad.

“This time our girls were ready from the get-go. They didn’t want to start slow,” said Llewelyn-Jones. “Medicine Hat defended and tackled well, but Medicine Hat was hardly able to penetrate our line, only in a couple of occasions were they able to break free.”

The Rebels brought in some JV Grade 10s for the match in which one was able to score her first two senior varsity tries of her career and the whole roster got plenty of quality playing time in the match.

While the W.R. Myers Rebels girls rugby team is on a bit of a roll right now, Llewelyn-Jones cautioned a really tough stretch of its schedule is coming up.

Next up for the Rebels is Vulcan, then Pincher Creek, LCI and Winston Churchill.

“Those are going to be four hard games I’m pretty sure,” said Llewelyn-Jones.

Rebels host Vulcan April 30 at Ken McDonald Memorial Sports Park.  The team then heads off to a Ross Sheppard tournament in Edmonton on the May 2 weekend. At the tournament, the Rebels have matches against the hosts, McNally High School, and Leduc.

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