Gallant women’s rugby side thrash depleted Newcastle

UNIVERSITY OF YORK 78 – 0 NEWSATLE UNIVERSITY
BUCS Northern Conference 2B

Images: James Hostford

York quickly adapted to a reduced team size and uncontested scrum rules to dominate play against an eleven-player and inexperienced Newcastle seconds side in the women’s rugby on 22 acres this afternoon, winning 78-0.

York took control of the game against Newcastle within the first few minutes, with Bradley sneaking thorough an unorganised Newcastle defence following an early turnover. A successful conversion by Harriet Giles gave York a 7-0 lead.

The Newcastle restart was kicked straight to captain Mollie Staples who forced her way under the posts. This was quickly followed by a third try for York, by Eleanor Campbell, following a penalty against Newcastle.

Newcastle’s next restart again went straight into the hands of Staples who scored her second of the day, outrunning two Newcastle defenders, to score under the posts. Another successful conversion for Giles meant that with 11 minutes played, York led 24-0.

Staples achieved her hat-trick in the next five minutes following a York drive over the line. Unfortunately Staples was injured in this effort and left the pitch for the rest of the half. Giles’ conversion increased York’s lead to 31-0 with 16 minutes played.

York continued to dominate, scoring a further three tries, including a second for Campbell, and Giles put another two conversions over the post. Despite some hard play from Newcastle, they were unable to pull any score back from York who ended the half leading 50-0.

The large York team meant that fresh players could be brought on during the second half, which allowed freshers the chance to get some game time.

Unfortunately, York were unable to replicate their early feats and scrappy play by both teams meant that neither scored until partway through the half when Zoe Chambers snuck under the posts following some quick passing down the line. Giles converted to confirm York’s second half attack and pull the lead up to 57-0.

A knock-on at the restart gave Newcastle their first real chance as they entered York’s half for one of only a very few times. However, a strong York defence prevented them from reaching the 22-metre line and they were instead pushed back deep into their own half.

York successfully scored another two tries under the post, both of which Giles converted. Kinbugwe’s (and York’s twelfth) try and Giles’ conversion in the last few minutes demonstrated York’s dominance with a 78-0 win at the final whistle.

Both teams showed a determined effort, however York’s experience and numbers compared to the inexperience of Newcastle meant that York dominated both play and the score line.

Following the match, York captain Mollie Staples told Nouse: “[I’m] really happy with how the game went … obviously the score shows how hard we worked and how well it went for us. They were a good team however, they weren’t a walk over, it was a fantastic play by them. They had some really dangerous players who got their hands on the ball often and it was a bit scary and a bit hairy for us sometimes, but I feel like our team did fantastically and I’m really, really proud of everyone that played.”

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