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CWU Women's Rugby Earns Trip to Finals With 53-7 Win Over Stanford


The Central Washington University women's rugby team punched its ticket to the spring Championships FInals with a 53-7 win over Stanford University Sunday afternoon.

The Wildcats will travel to Pittsburgh, PA on April. 24-26 to compete in the USA Rugby 15s Spring Championships for a chance to face the fall Champions, Penn State University in the finals that will be held on May. 9.

The Wildcats won the Pacific Mountain Conference Regional tournament as the No. 1 seed from the North Division, defeating the University of California Chico State, the University of California Davis twice and the West No. 1 seed Stanford University Sunday.

"We were focused and came out with a game plan," Head coach Mel Denham said. "We executed it beautifully."

The Wildcats were the first to strike in the match, as they would touch down in the 4th minute to take a 5-0 lead. Heather Johnson would increase the lead to 10-0 when she scored on a maul off a lineout and Katerina Long nailed the two-point conversion to make the score 12-0.

Jennifer Johnson and Carrie Vaillancourt would each score in the first half to give the Wildcats a 22-0 lead and Angela Ve'evalu touched down before the break to give CWU a 29-0 lead heading into the halftime.

"There was no certain player that stood out today," Denham said. "I've never seen a team effort like the one that was given today."

Heather Johnson would score her second try of the game early in the second half in the same fashion as the first to give the Wildcats a 34-0 lead.

Stanford earned its first try in the second half to cut the lead to 34-7 but two tries by Asinate Serevi and one more by Ve'evalu late in the half proved to be too much as the game would end 53-7 in favor of the Wildcats.

"We are still building," Denham concluded. "So while we have a little time to rest and be proud of what we have done so far, we know there is still work to do."