HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac women’s rugby team defeated MetNY opponent Marist, 23-7, in its home-opener on Sunday afternoon in Hamden, Conn. With their second-consecutive victory, the Bobcats improve to 2-2 overall and 2-1 in MetNY action, while Marist falls to 1-2, both in the conference and overall.
The Bobcats offensive outburst was led by senior Stephanie Hasher (Bayport, N.Y.) who ran in two tries on the afternoon, giving her a total of 10 points in the game. Senior Alysha Andrews (Leola, Pa.) and sophomore Allison Gnys (Cumberland, R.I.) each collected five points on Quinnipiac’s two additional tries. Three of the four trys came off an assist from the speedy freshman Elisa Cuellar (Palm Bay, Fla.), as sophomore Jacqueline Lilly (Ventura, Calif) had Quinnipiac's first assist of the contest, helping the Bobcats orchestrated its highest scoring total of the season.
Junior Krystin Orrico (Cranford, N.J.) made the best of her opportunities, as she knocked in her first penalty kick of the game to give her three points on the afternoon. Time after time, Orrico gave Quinnipiac great field position with several tremendous kicks from the back line, helping Quinnipiac hold its opponent to just one try for the second consecutive game.
Defensively, the Bobcats were just as tenacious, as they held Marist to just one try in the game, which came after holding the Red Foxes scoreless through the first 56 minutes of action. Senior Jacqueline MacLearie (Tinton Falls, N.J.) led Quinnipiac with six tackles, followed by junior Colleen Doherty’s (Ashburnham, Mass.) four tackles on the afternoon.
Quinnipiac and Marist exchanged field position through the first ten minutes of play, as each side drove into the other’s offensive half. The Bobcats added their first try of the afternoon in the 16th minute of play, as Lilly ran in her first score, coming off an assist from Cuellar. The score developed following a great drive by the Bobcats deep into Marist’s defensive zone. Off the scrum, Quinnipiac gained possession, and Cuellar passed the ball toward the center of the field to Lilly who busted through the Red Foxes defense to give Quinnipiac the 5-0 lead.
The Bobcats extended their lead to 8-0 when Orrico was awarded a penalty kick from 10 yards outside the goal post.
With five minutes remaining in the first half, Marist nearly had their first try of the afternoon, but Lilly made an excellent defensive stop, chasing down junior Kelly Sullivan to preserve the eight point lead.
The Bobcats quickly reversed the momentum and found themselves deep in Marist’s defensive zone following a 35 yard kick from Orrico with just under three minutes remaining in the half. Hasher proceeded to give the Bobcats the 13-0 cushion on her first try of the game with just under 1:30 remaining in the half.
Quinnipiac played its most dominant half of the season in the first half, winning 13-of-19 lineouts and five of nine scrums. Overall, the Bobcats held a 19-to-12 advantage in lineouts and a 12-to-8 lead in scrums.
Quinnipiac thwarted any thoughts of a second half comeback early on, as Hasher ran in her second try on the afternoon just three minutes into the half to increase the Bobcats lead, 18-0. Marist responded by quickly driving into Quinnipiac’s defensive zone, but an Orrico kick helped the Bobcats escape from trouble once again.
The Red Foxes got on the board in the 56th minute of play, as sophomore Heather Carr ran in her first try off an assist from Sullivan. Sullivan’s conversion following the try was good, bringing the score to 18-7 with 24 minutes remaining in the game.
Gnys responded with her first try just over five minutes later, increasing the lead to 23-7. Lilly was credited with an assist on the score. The score was the result of one of the longest runs of the afternoon for Quinnipiac, as Hasher raced down the sideline before she was tackled just a few yards outside the goal-area.
Quinnipiac controlled the ball for most of the second half, leading to its impressive 23-7 final score.
The Bobcats return to action on Saturday, Oct. 8 when they host Vassar at 12 p.m.
Contact: Ross Bennett; firstname.lastname@example.org