October 15, 2011: Middlebury vs. Williams

FINAL SCORE: 18 – 7, win


It ended up being a fairly nice day, in that it didn’t start drizzling until AFTER our game was finished. We were all excited to have our friends, relatives, and parents cheering us on from the sideline – and it showed from the first minute of play. In arguably our best game of the season, we pulled out a win for all of our adoring fans.


2 minutes into the first half, Evan Pagano ’12 (flyhalf), in her second game of the season due to injuries, reminded all of us why we missed her out on the field and made a beautiful run to score our first try. Jess Berry ’13 (scrumhalf) missed the conversion kick.


Not long after, the forwards had an amazing series of punches up the field after a run from the back line. The Williams defense was caught off guard, and Berry took the ball from the back of a ruck to make a final punch into the try zone, 11 minutes into the first half. Hannah Elkin ’13 (lock) missed the conversion kick.


20 minutes in, a penalty right in front of the uprights gave Berry an easy opportunity for a 3 point kick-for-points.


5 minutes before the first half ended, Marissa Shaw ’14 pushed through multiple Williams players down the left side of the field to score her FIRST TRY EVER. With her parents and family friends on the sidelines, it was an amazing first try for the versatile sophomore, who plays flanker and inside center.


The first half ended with a score of 18 – 0.


Williams came out harder the second half, and no points were scored until the 77th minute, when Williams scored a try and made their kick, making the final score of the game 18 – 7.


It was a great game, and even better was the time we spent afterwards with our parents, family, and friends. We had many generous parents bring food, drinks, tables, cups, plates, etc. and we were able to have a buffet of food after the game for all of our hungry players and fans. It was a beautiful day for rugby, filled with beautiful people.


Thank you again to everyone who came out to see us, and particular thanks to those of you who contributed to our post-game meal (whether that was through donating food, donating money, or helping set-up or clean-up). It was a perfect day, and we were all so glad we got to share it with all of you.


On Saturday the 22nd we play URI in Kingstown, RI for our quarter-final game! Bring it on!

October 8, 2011: Middlebury vs. Colby

FINAL SCORE: 22 – 21, win


It was the perfect fall weather, “a beautiful day for rugby”. We got onto the field ready for a comeback from last week’s loss, and our excitement and eagerness to win showed throughout the game.

We came out tough and had possession of the ball in their half at the beginning of the first half. The ref called a scrum to Colby right in front of their try zone. They won the scrum and got the ball back to their fly half, who tried to kick the ball out of their zone. Jessica Berry ’13 blocked the kicked and it went back to their inside center (who was still standing in their try zone). The inside center tried to kick the ball out, but Logan Gallogly ’12 blocked the second attempt as well. The ball bounced in front of Sarah Pfander ’13, who fell on it and touched it down in their try zone for the first try of the game, right in the center of the try zone. This made it easy for Berry to make the conversion kick.

The score was 7 – 0.

However, Colby came back with a vengeance. Their quick inside center broke through the back line and made a long run down the field to score, despite the valiant efforts of Sarah Minahan ’14 and Kayla Bien ’13, who both chased her all the way down the field and into our zone. Colby also made their conversion kick.

The score was 7 – 7.

But instead of being discouraged, we got fired up and ready to get our game back. Shortly after Colby scored, we got the ball back down into their half of the field. The ref then called a penalty on Colby right in the middle of the field, less then 22 yards out from their uprights. We decided to try to kick for extra points. Berry successfully made the kick, putting an extra 3 points on the board for Midd.

The score was 10 – 7.

Colby, however, wasn’t going down without a fight. They came back strong in the second half and scored two tries in a row. The first was another long run by their inside center. The second was off a play right in front of our try zone, where a quick ball out let them find a hole in our defensive line. They made both of their conversion kicks.

The score was now 10 – 21.

Knowing that time was running short, we kicked up the intensity of our game. A few plays off the scrum between our fly half and eight-man got the ball down near their try zone. After a few punches up the center off the ruck, the Colby defensive line got messy. Berry, the scrumhalf, took the ball off the back of a ruck and pushed through a hole in their line to score right near the uprights. She then made the conversion kick.

The score was 17 – 21.

The clock was running thin, and we knew we needed another try to win the game. Julianna Gardner ’13, our top scorer who was sitting out for the first 3/4 of the game due to a leg injury, came in at wing. And she pulled through, as we all hoped she would. Receiving a quick ball out through the back line from a ruck, Gardner received her pass and bolted straight for the corner of the try zone. She rushed past their wing and fullback and just made it into their try zone to touch down the ball before getting tackled. Berry missed the kick, but it didn’t matter.

The score was 22 – 21.

Soon after, the final whistle blew and MCWRC blew a sigh of relief after a long, exciting game. Captain Melissa Hayes ’12 was in tears, which pretty much sums up how everyone on the team felt after the hard-earned win. It was a great feeling, a well-played game, and a BEAUTIFUL day for rugby.


We now head into our last regular-season game against Williams College. It’s an 11:00 home game for Fall Family Weekend, and we couldn’t be more excited to have all of our friends and families there to support us and cheer us on for such an important game!

As always, bring your excitement and we’ll bring our A-game!

October 1, 2011: Middlebury vs. Bowdoin

FINAL SCORE: 10 – 62, loss


After a long, 5.5 hour bus ride on Saturday up to Bowdoin, Maine, we were excited to get off the bus and onto the pitch. We didn’t have too much time to warm up (it took us forever to find a locker room to use), but the upside was that the rain stopped for the entire duration of our A and B-side games against Bowdoin.

Unfortunately, we just couldn’t make ends meet throughout the game, and Bowdoin came out strong early on. They scored within the first 3 minutes of the game. Overall, they scored 6 tries in each half and made one of their conversion kicks for a total score of 62 points. Many of their tries were scored down the sideline by their quick wings, and they had a few big forwards that made good punches up the center of the field.

While we certainly were not used to taking such a beating, we didn’t let the score get down our spirits. We came back strong in the second half, and 70 minutes into the game, Julianna Gardner ’13 made a beautiful run from nearly half field to score a try right in the center of the try-zone. It was a great moment for the team, and our spirits were definitely lifted.

However, Bowdoin came back and scored 7 minutes later. We still had our stride, but it was definitely frustrating to have our momentum interrupted. As we walked up to half-field to kick off to Bowdoin with three minutes left, the reff looked at Jess Berry ’13 and Hannah Elkin ’13 and said, “It would be really nice for you guys to have the last try of the game. Just go for it.” And that’s what we did. In the last minute of the game, Melissa Hayes ’12 offloaded the ball off a tackle to Berry, who was then hit by their outside center. She offloaded it to Gardner, who was perfectly positioned on the sideline on the right of the field. A quick pop pass from the offload and Gardner took off down the field. She just managed to scoot past their fullback and score in the corner of the try-zone. The whistle blew, and the game ended on a high note.


The B-side game went well. We played two fifteen minute halves. Our rookies were able to get more PT in their positions, and since neither Bowdoin nor Midd had enough players to side full teams, we each played teams of 12 and were able to let some of our injured players rest. We won the B-side game by good amount (no one kept score), though our B-side consisted of about 75% of veterans, so that was to be expected. Regardless, it was good practice for us, and Bowdoin appreciated being able to give their rookies a chance to play.


After the games, we were given pizza and goodies by the Bowdoin team. We had the opportunity to take showers in the locker room, and then we were escorted to one of their social houses to hang out with the Bowdoin team. We had a great time and really appreciated the hospitality. It made the long drive much more worthwhile.


The Bowdoin team already played Colby, who we will be facing this coming weekend. They said that Colby was very good, so we’re prepared for a tough game on the 8th. We got a lot of great practice in against Bowdoin and this week in practice, and we’re really looking forward to getting back on the pitch.


Hope to see you all this weekend for our home game against Colby at 1:00! Bring your friends, posters, and enthusiasm — we promise to bring our A game!