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EDSS girls’ rugby squad has strong year, but falls to top team in playoffs

The EDSS varsity rugby girls’ team wrapped up a successful regular season after being eliminated by number-one ranked Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate in the playoffs.

The team’s record was 5-1-0 in the regular season before heading into the sudden-death playoffs. EDSS was beat out by KCI after eliminating Grand River Collegiate Institute 29-10 in the qualifiers.

Coach Matthew Bauman said he was impressed by the tenacity and resiliency the young team demonstrated during this year’s play.

“The season has gone really well this year. We had many seniors who didn’t return, one of whom was our top scorer.  So, we didn’t expect many wins from the team with such small numbers, less than 20 players on the roster when we usually have closer to 40. But each player really stepped it up to meet each challenge,” said Bauman. “The only team we lost to, GRCI, in regular season was our second game. We had lost to them 29-10, and then beat them in playoffs 29-10, so it shows how much they girls improved throughout the season.”

Players that stood out this year were Abbey Hanley (Grade 12) and Abbey Brick (Grade 11), Mackenzie Martin (Grade 11) scored the most trys and teammate Brianna Costa (Grade 12) received the most valuable player this year.

“She (Costa) was the leader of the team who continuously rallied everyone each game as we usually had a slow start and made a comeback most games after being down in points,” said Bauman.

Bauman, who has been coaching the team for the past six years, says co-coach David Vandenberg will be taking over the team next year.

“I’m hoping to get back to help the Lancers out when I can next year. They will have many new faces next year, as we have eight seniors graduating,” said Bauman.

The team will be playing in a tournament at Bluevale Collegiate Institute on May 26 before the players hang up their cleats for the school year.

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