BRUNSWICK, Maine - The Bowdoin College women's rugby team
bounced back from last week's loss to take a convincing 32-0 win
over the University of Maine-Orono on Saturday. Before a full crowd
of alumnae and friends, the Polar Bears improved to 3-3 this
Bowdoin dominated from the opening kickoff and scored early on with a heads up play by scrumhalf Becky Stevens, who ran upfield with the ball, drew the UMO defense in, kicked over their heads, and followed upfield, collecting the ball off the bounce and scampering into the endzone. The forward pack, led by co-captain Loryn Fridie, continued their strong rucking, retaining good ball possession for the Polar Bears. Moving downfield on a series of runs by wingers Kerry Townsend and Zara Bowden, Bowdoin took advantage of a Black Bear penalty, and after three consecutive plays off the base of the ruck, Fridie scored, bringing the score to 10-0. Bowdoin's backline defense was greatly improved with flyhalf Katie Mathews returning to the lineup and centers Carolyn Levin and Sian Riebe shutting down Maine's attack and creating turnovers. Feeding off the strong scrummaging of the forward pack, and their own good backline defense, Bowdoin's backs then got into the scoring action. Paulina del Rodis,supporting from fullback, took a pass and scored the try, after a slashing run from Levin. Marketia James closed out the first half scoring with a heads up play off a series of pick and drive moves involving strong support by the forward pack.
Maine continued to battle back with strong play from their scrumhalf Kelsie Moreau, high kicks to the fullback, and deep kick offs that caught Bowdoin out of position, but due to the strong team defense they were unable to cross the try line. Bowdoin built on it's first half lead, scoring on two of several excellent running plays from the backline, well supported by the back row forwards. Uche Esonu linked with the backs on a nice play out wide, and Levin slashed her way through several defenders to ground the ball between the posts. Stevens made good on the conversion kick, for the final score of 32-0.
The Polar Bears will return to action next Friday with a key match at the University of New Hampshire.
Photos courtesy of Brian Beard and Creative Images Photography.