Monthly Archives: October 2005

About Blondie

Name: Blondie … among many other nicknames.

Why not your real name? Because I’m shy. And even though, yes, this is a public web log and I share my thoughts and life events with you all, I like to keep some of me just for me.

Occupation: Communications … Public, Media & Community Relations, along with some Web Content work, digital photography, electronic artwork and publication design. And now this blog.

What Field? Currently Public Health & Government. Previously Collegiate Athletics.

Previous Occupation: Sports Information & Media Relations for the University of Wisconsin Badgers for three years. I handled all communications for UW men’s soccer, women’s hockey, wrestling and assisted with UW’s 20 other varsity sports such as football, men’s and women’s basketball and men’s hockey.

During my time with the Badgers, I was the media coordinator for the 2003 Big Ten Wrestling Championships, as well as working at the 2002 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, 2002 NCAA Men’s Basketball Regional Tournament, 2004 ESPN Great Outdoor Games, Big Ten Football Media Day conferences and various collegiate tournaments and championships. I also often freelanced for ESPN, Fox and other major television networks helping out with crew and stats work. Most recently, I was a statistician and media room volunteer for the 2006 NCAA Men’s Hockey Frozen Four at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wis.

I had the pleasure of working with several outstanding athletic staff members, including UW women’s hockey coach Mark Johnson, a former NHL All-Star, NCAA All-American and member of the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” Olympic team. The movie “Miracle” came out during my Badger tenure and provided me with some additional national media experience, in addition to a shoutout in the recently released book by Wayne Coffey, The Boys of Winter.

Before that? A university journalism Teaching Assistant, Newspaper Sports Editor, Television News Intern, Bartender, gift shop salesperson, waitress … I’m multi-talented. I even worked in a Christmas gift shop for a summer.

Education: Master’s Degree, Journalism & Strategic Communication – University of Wisconsin-Madison; Bachelor’s of Science Degree, Mass Communication (Broadcast) – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Semester in South Pacific, Macquarie University/Dunmore Lang College in Sydney, Australia – UWSP International Programs. Random classes in my fields of interest & work.

Rugby Playing Experience: 12 years & counting … 4.5 years of college rugby at UW-Stevens Point (Div. II), 3.5 years At-Large, four years plus for Wisconsin Women’s RFC (Div. I). WI Collegiate Select-Side and Senior Select-Side.

Rugby Positions: In college, outside center, wing. Currently, utility player. Usually, flanker, center, sometime lock, hooker, wing, No. 8.

Rugby Administration: Club Financials in college, currently club communications & Webmaster, former president. No one will let me quit.

Coaching Experience: Nothing formal yet. I volunteer whenever possible to learn. I would like to be a women’s rugby coach some day and provide younger players with a good role model. The next time I have spare cash, I plan on getting certified. Updated: I am a volunteer assistant coach for the Wisconsin Under-19 Girls’ Select-Side Team.

Do you play other sports? I intended to run track in college (hurdles & sprints), but was tired of it after high school. I unfortunately rarely had good coaches who I respected and looked up to (small remote school with less options). I wanted to try something different, so enter rugby. I always liked basketball, soccer and swimming. I also am a certified PADI open water scuba diver and enjoy horseback riding.

Why did you start this blog? I like writing, news, rugby and the internet. I was also fascinated by blogs, specifically some good ones here in Madison. I always had wished there was one place on the net to find all kinds of women’s rugby information and news. One place to pool our resources. So I figured, what the heck. I believe I may even be the first U.S. women’s rugby Weblog that’s not somebody’s personal site. I also like learning some cool web stuff as I go. See this post I wrote one of the first few days.

Have you promoted this blog? Not really yet, just word of mouth. And posting the link on a few sites. I would like to see if it catches on without shameless self promotion. Not that I am incapable of that though. 😉

How come you you didn’t run off to Fiji and become a pirate/dive boat captain like you originally planned to? No worries. That is still in the cards. I’m still pretty young.

I heard you sometimes shoot your mouth off in games? Ummm … who told you that? For the record, yes, that sometimes happens. But only when provoked. And usually for good reason. Okay, so yeah, I swear like a sailor sometimes … a lot of times. I’m working on it though. So bugger off.

I also heard you recently made the “big switch” … you know, swapped teams, the big changeola? Man, who is gossiping? Yes, it’s true. I recently switched! I now drink Diet Mt. Dew instead of regular Mt. Dew. It was a long time coming and a big moment in my life. Thank you for understanding.

What’s the best way to contact you if I have some information or a story idea? You can leave me a comment on a post or e-mail me at saturdayrugbyday@yahoo.com.

Last Updated: Dec. 22, 2005 May 16, 2006

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2006 Women’s Rugby World Cup Seeds & Schedule Announced

The International Rugby Board (IRB) announced the seeds and schedule today for the upcoming 2006 Women’s Rugby World Cup in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Here’s the official news release from the IRB:

The seedings, pools and match schedule have been announced for the 2006 Women’s Rugby World Cup (WRWC) in Edmonton, Canada, with the New Zealand Black Ferns topping the bill.

The Black Ferns travel to Edmonton as defending champions, having beaten England in the previous WRWC final in Barcelona in 2002. France overcame Canada on the final day of that event to finish third.

The event is to be played across six match days between 31 August 2006 and 17 September, with the final due to be played at the Commonwealth Stadium.

The event is the premier showcase for the fastest-growing women’s team sport in the world.

From the very first whistle, the tournament will set pulses racing in Edmonton as the much-vaunted Black Ferns go up against the home side and fourth seeds Canada in arguably the clash of the pool stages.

The first three match days will see a cross-pool league system in operation, with Pool A playing Pool D and Pool B playing Pool C, with points going towards one single division table for all four pools.

New Zealand, Spain and Kazakhstan from Pool A will therefore play Pool D sides Canada, Scotland and Samoa, while the teams in Pool B – second seeds England, Australia and Ireland – will play Pool C’s third seeds France, USA and South Africa.

After three match days, with each team having played three pool matches, positional semi-finals will be played with the top four-positioned sides vying to make the WRWC final, and all other sides playing matches in the final two rounds to determine final tournament placings.

Seedings
1. New Zealand (Champion, 2002 WRWC)
2. England (Runner-up, 2002 WRWC)
3. France (3rd, 2002 WRWC)
4. Canada (4th 2002 WRWC)
5. Scotland
6. USA
7. Australia
8. Spain
9. Kazakhstan
10. Ireland
11. South Africa
12. Samoa


I like the line “fastest growing women’s team sport in the world”. Goff on Rugby (subscription required) also ran it’s own piece on the announcement, featuring news on our USA Eagles and the other teams, in addition to a schedule of games:

Despite finishing 7th in the 2002 tournament, the USA is actually seeded 6th. They are bumped up ahead of Australia, who beat the USA in the 2002 tournament 17-5, because Australia hasn’t played any international matches since the last World Cup.

The first three match days will see a cross-pool league system in operation, with Pool A playing Pool D and Pool B playing Pool C, with points going towards one single division table for all four pools.

Canada plays all three teams in Pool A: New Zealand on August 31, Spain on September 4, and Kazakhstan on September 8. The USA, in Pool C, will play Pool B teams England on August 31, Ireland on September 4, and a rematch with Australia on September 8.

After the three pool matches the top four teams will play off in semifinals and final September 12 and 16. The schedule could make for some interesting situations. New Zealand is expected to sweep its three pool games and finish 3-0, thus wrapping up a semifinal spot. In the Pool B v. Pool C contest, the USA has an outside chance to finish 3-0, but favored to sweep the pool games are England or France (France has beaten England the last three times).

Regardless, you will end up with two 3-0 teams, and then four other teams will be 2-1 (barring ties). A semifinal place, and that coveted top four ranking, could well depend on bonus points or points differential. Among those four is expected to be the USA, who are in an interesting situation in that the Eagles are certainly capable of beating England, but could also lose to Australia (they should beat Ireland).

For the first time, the women’s World Cup is a competitive tournament through at least the top eight, and no one has a really easy game. Having said that, the Black Ferns are heavy favorites.

2006 Women’s Rugby World Cup Match Schedule
Aug 31 2006
New Zealand v. Canada
Spain v. Scotland
Kazakhstan v. Samoa
England v. USA
Australia v. South Africa
Ireland v. France

Sept. 04 2006
New Zealand v. Samoa
Spain v. Canada
Kazakhstan v. Scotland
England v. South Africa
Australia v. France
Ireland v. USA

Sept. 08 2006
New Zealand v. Scotland
Kazakhstan v. Canada
Spain v. Samoa
England v. France
Australia v. USA
Ireland v. South Africa

Sept. 12 2006 (MATCH #, Teams)
19 10th v. 11th
20 9th v. 12th
21 6th v. 7th
22 5th v. 8th
23 2nd v. 3rd
24 1st v. 4th

Sept. 16 2006 (MATCH #, Teams)
25 Loser M23 v. Loser M24
26 Winner M23 v. Winner M24
27 Loser M21 v. Loser M22

Sept. 17 2006 (MATCH #, Teams)
28 Winner M21 v. Winner M22
29 Loser M19 v. Loser M20
30 Winner M19 v. Winner M20



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