Volume 95, Issue 11

Wednesday, September 19, 2001
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Ruggers give boot to U of T

Mustang uniforms add stripes

Terry Fox's hope lives on

They're runnin' down a dream

Field hockey team blaze to win

Ruggers give boot to U of T

By Tate Abols
Gazette Writer

Lauren Starr/Gazette
I FEEL LIKE THE RABBIT AT A GREYHOUND RACE. Western's women's rugby fullback Diane Coulthard, at centre, carries the ball away from the opposition during Sunday's game on campus against U of T.

Beneath a glorious Sunday afternoon sun, the Western women's rugby team recorded a resounding victory over their counterparts from the University of Toronto by a score of 35-0.

The win improved Western's record to 2-0.

Led by the strong and accurate right foot of fullback Diane Coulthard, whose afternoon of work resulted in two penalty goals and two try conversions, the Mustangs jumped out to an early 3-0 lead and never looked back.

The sure-footed fullback was complemented by a Mustang front row which dominated their opposition.

"Whether you like it or not, a game is won and lost in the front row," said Mustang coach Natasha Weisch.

The work of the Mustangs trio of Sarah Myton, Rebecca Skillen and co-captain Molly Duignan paid off with one try and the creation of running space for the backs to hit the gain-line at pace.

The space created was well-used by winger Natasha Gaydon and rookie outside centre Isabelle Despres, who marked her fifth try in just her third game of rugby.

According to Weisch, Despres, a reformed soccer player, "has a future in the game if she realizes how good she can be."

As the game moved along slowly, often halting due to the ever-present referee's whistle, it was clear Western's side was stronger and quicker than their opponents.

This strength was showcased in an energetic try scored by lock Sarah Myton early in the second half, giving Western a 20-0 lead

Co-captain Judy McCartney identified the game plan for the Mustangs. "The type of game we want to play is fast and quick, based on fitness. We played hard today," she said. "We got away with some loose rucking and poor fitness, but at least we now know what needs to be worked on for the next game and the season."

This thought was echoed by Weisch. "Our goal is to get into the playoffs and that's what we are focussing on. Whether we win or lose every game doesn't matter; the end process is what matters," she said.

U of T head coach Sarah Hall was quick to give credit to the Western side. "We had a lot of unfortunate injuries, a lot of serious injuries and we were still a little tentative on defence. The Westen team was far more aggressive than we were and in our face all game," she said.

Weisch said Western must continue on a "baby steps" program.

"There was some really good stuff [on the field] today and now we need to put it all together. The process of making it into the playoffs is there and we are taking it one step at a time," she said.

The team now heads on the road for two games and returns home to play Waterloo on Oct. 5 at 4 p.m..

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Copyright The Gazette 2001