Monthly Archives: March 2006

A Wisconsin Women’s Hockey Update

I found this cool photo of the entire University of Wisconsin Women’s Hockey Team & Staff with the 2006 NCAA Trophy. Just wanted to share it. One of my former student assistants, and the replacement for yours truly, Jen is on the right in the red as this year’s women’s hockey SID. Cool, cool, cool.

The hockey team even got a shoutout in the US House of Representatives in Washington, DC on Thursday. Wisconsin’s governor also declared March 27 as “UW Badger Women’s Hockey Day”. 🙂

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Roadtrip!

Giving back to the rugby youth of America tomorrow (and stealing scrabble letters) … Blondie & Pinkie!! And possibly Goose!

(2005 Savannah celebration not included)

Guest coaches for Blondie’s Alma Mater, UW-Stevens Point Women’s Rugby, at the All Fools Tournament in (hopefully) beautiful Winona, MN. Go Black & Blood! (UWSP’s team name)

Now I’m just posting fun pictures because I’m avoiding real productivity. *sigh*

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Update-A-Thon-A-Rama

Okay, in order of reception to my Saturday’s A Rugby Day inbox, I have added or changed the following in the sidebar thanks to all of you …

Zora – Stony Brook is in the college list. Once you have a site, I’ll add a link.

Jennifer – Texas link is added. Hook ’em Horns!

University of MD Women – you left a comment, but no URL. And I don’t know if that is Maryland or what?

Inessa – The College of New Jersey link is added. Ruck On right back at ya.

Lindsay in the South – Sorry that Mississippi State is on the low right now. Best of luck and glad to hear you are playing when you can. Good luck. If the Half Moons are back in action after Katrina, please let me know.

Corinna – Sienna College is added and keeping playing the higher Divisions II & I strong. Good luck!

Amy in Texas – Glad I found your blog. Best of luck in grad school too. And yes, definitely update us on the Valks versus Quins game.

Michelle – Utah State is added. Good luck with your new coaches & captains.

Emily – Morris College is added. Best of luck this spring.

Claire – Brookfield Bruisers are the official first link in the HS list. Send me other HS links if you have them. And good luck in Iowa this weekend!

Jenna – I added your alma mater team, Hamilton. Thanks for the link!

Ashleigh in the UK – I added Liverpool Hope under International Friends. When you get a site, send me the link. Good luck with your surgery and best of luck to the Frogs this spring.

Mary in Texas – Thanks for clarifying the D-I vs. D-II teams. Good to know that. And thanks for being one of the first regular readers.

I think that’s all. Thank you to everyone who commented, e-mailed and shared your team and your rugby stories. Have a fun weekend! Hey and don’t forget to add a pin!

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I’ve run out of fingers and toes for counting …

Not only did Saturday’s A Rugby Day cross the 100-visitor mark yesterday, we beat that mark silly with a final count of (drumroll please) … 174 visitors.

See that big green peak on the end of my weekly count graph … that’s yesterday. I’m fairly incredulous.

So, I’m granting All-Star status to the Oklahoma women who were kind enough to share my blog with their MySpace community. Although, I’ll have to clean up my sailor-like vocabulary because I’m getting a few High School visitors now too. And unlike Charles Barkley, I would like to be a good role-model.

I received several e-mails yesterday from new & regular readers to help me add new links and update existing ones. Big thanks especially to those of you kind enough to let me know which teams should be D-I versus D-II, because I basically guess since there is no one place to verify this information in some kind of list. Which I guess means, I now am making that list? I guess so. No worries.

And also to Claire from Wisconsin, got your e-mail. When I have time, I will create a High School Girls list on the sidebar because you are right. There are lots of great HS teams in our country, especially here in our lovely state.

Also, Ashleigh in the UK — you’re right, not many UK teams. I have only posted a few foreign teams, mainly because I focus on American teams. Sorry, but it’s what I know since I am a Yank. However, I will add your team to the International Friends list when I update the sidebar.

Which brings me to the most important thing to note.

I started this blog for fun and because I wanted one place where my friends and I could find the links and resources for women’s rugby information across the USA, plus I get to jot down my rambling thoughts and vent about busting my butt for rugby. I don’t have very much time to search out new links, team results, stories, etc. So, if you enjoy reading my blog and want to help it get better, you all need to help me out and keep sending in links, results, team stories, pictures, etc. It would be great that after each weekend, there could be a post of just results/pics, etc. from across the country (and the globe too).

And because I think it’s important that this information be shared with everyone (because that is what makes women’s rugby stronger), I’ll do my best to keep up with you all. Oh and if you’re a rugger who blogs, let me know that too.

Thanks to all my new visitors for stopping by. And if you’re playing this weekend, good luck and ruck hard. I know I will be.

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Some scores and more …

A few college women’s rugby results that have been sent in to the Saturday’s A Rugby Day In Box this week … leave more scores/results in the comments.

• Texas A&M defeated Oklahoma, 37-10. But Oklahoma is now gaining honorable mention in the national rankings, so keep up the hard work Roses.

“We lost a heartbreaker for sure,” said fullback Andrea Gossard. “Hopefully, we’ll have another opportunity to play them at Western Collegiates and get our win.”

• Brigham Young’s Erica Kiefer scored a hat trick of tries to help BYU beat Utah Valley State, 42-22.

The Cougars relied on speed and quickness to score 42 consecutive points after falling behind 5-0 in the match’s early minutes.

“We utilized our strength, which is speed on the outside,” BYU coach Tom Waqa said. “We decided to spread the ball around and give it up to our fast wingers.

“Of course, (UVSC) is a lot bigger, so we didn’t want to play up front with them. We had to be smart and use our speed.”

• From a readers’ e-mail, Minnesota’s Under-23 Select-Sides played Northern Iowa this past weekend, but lost 49-0. On a personal note, I’m looking forward to the results from the April 8-9 Midwest Collegiate/Under-23 LAU Tournament and how the Wisconsin U-23s perform.

Image: UVSC’s Asher Shaner, center, runs through the BYU defenders for a try in women’s rugby Wednesday in Orem. Photo by Michael Brandy, Desert Morning News.

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Eagle Women Sweep Pool, 155-0, at Hong Kong Sevens

Via USA Rugby …

3-31-2006 – WNT OUTSCORES HK POOL 155-0
HONG KONG- The USA Rugby Women’s Sevens National Team dominated pool play here at the Women’s Hong Kong Sevens at the Hong Kong Football Club in Happy Valley Friday, blanking Thailand (50-0), Guam (55-0) and Singapore (50-0).

The Women Eagles will play Australia Saturday in the Plate/Cup semifinals for the right to advance to the Cup Final against either New Zealand or Kazakhstan, and play in Hong Kong Stadium, as part of the sold-out Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens.

And there’s more information available at Rugby7 on New Zealand’s team, along with info I have already posted.

Aotearoa Maori to defend Hong Kong women’s title
Defending champions, New Zealand’s Aotearoa Maori, are returning with a goal to maintain New Zealand’s perfect record as tournament champions in each of the eight Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens played to date. Four of those titles were won by the Maoris, representing New Zealand.

Twelve elite international women’s sevens rugby teams will take part in the ninth Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens, to be held on Friday 31 March and Saturday 1 April 2006 at the Hong Kong Football Club.

The official tournament draw for the Cable & Wireless Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 (HKWRS) was held on March 9th at The Helena May in Central, Hong Kong.

New Zealand, Winners at 2005 HK Sevens.
The Cup Final of the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 will be played at the Hong Kong Stadium on Saturday 1 April at 2:54pm as part of the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens 2006.

Despite pressures on the women’s rugby calendar from the Women’s Rugby World Cup later this year in Canada, the Cable & Wireless Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 again features a highly competitive mix of national teams and leading club sides from around the world.

About Aotearoa Maori
The Aotearoa Maori Women’s 7’s team (Nga Mareikura) first participated at Hong Kong in 2002, following the New Zealand Rugby Union decision not to send an official New Zealand team, and to instead concentrate their efforts and funding on the Women’s 15-a-side World Cup in Spain. The AMWR 7’s took up the invitation and, despite having to fund themselves, created history and lived up to their No 1 ranking by going through the tournament unbeaten, and comprehensively beating the USA in the final.

The New Zealand Rugby Union again decided in 2003 not to send an official New Zealand women’s team to Hong Kong. However, their Maori board, Whakapumautanga, endorsed the Aotearoa Maori Women’s team’s bid to win the invitation to return to Hong Kong and defend their title. Despite a strong lobby from former Black Ferns Coach, Darryl Sua Sua to take an invitation team (Wild Ducks) as New Zealand representatives, the Hong Kong organisers chose to invite the Peter Joseph coached, and Whakapumautanga supported, Aotearoa Maori Women’s team. The rest is history. The AMWR 7’s won the 2003 title with a devastating win over England 27-0 in the final.

This same pattern was repeated in 2004 and 2005. Although the final score in 2004 was closer, the win was just as emphatic. Australia (and their Black Ferns import) were out-muscled by the Maori team .

The AMWR 7’s went into the 2004 tournament with five new players and every one of them proved their worth. Victoria Blackledge, with 13 tournament tries, was the player of the tournament. Annie Brown was an inspirational Captain and her leadership, vision and control, won her the deserved title of Player of the Final.

In 2005, the Maoris defeated the Australian Rats 19-12 to keep the HK Cup in New Zealand’s hands.

Financial and product support have always been difficult to gain, despite the team’s tremendous record and success. Coach Peter Joseph and his wife have again coped with a funding shortfall.

“The support from our sponsors has been tremendous”, said Selector/Coach, Peter Joseph. “ and it is thanks to them that we are back competing at Hong Kong this year. Without the funding support of Cathay Pacific, the NZ Community Trust, Te Puni Kokiri and the massive individual efforts team members and their whanau have made, the cost would have been too great”, said Joseph.

“Our training camp last weekend left us with the toughest decision on who to leave out” said Joseph. “We have a number of new and exciting players in the squad and every one of them is worthy of selection”, he said. “We are confident that the team we have selected is a strong one, able to compete against the best that the rest of the world has to offer”, added Joseph.

The squad includes six of last years champion team, two former Aotearoa 7’s representatives, and two new caps. “We have lost Kellie Kiwi to retirement and Stephanie Mortimer and Tessa Te Kahu to injury, but have been able to put together and extremely fit and talented team”, said Peter Joseph.

“We are particularly delighted that 15 year old Hawkes Bay school girl, Shaan Waru has made the team as she is a huge rugby talent for the future, and is going to stamp her mark on this prestigious tournament”, he said. The Aotearoa Women’s 7’s depart for Hong on 28 March and look set to meet Australia, the tournaments beaten finalist of the last two years, in the semi-finals. The full Aotearoa team is:

Lavinia Gould (C) (Wellington)
Rachael Savage O’Neill (Wellington)
Mere Baker (Canterbury)
Selica Winiata (Manawatu)
Annie Brown (Waikato)
Rachel Wikeepa (Waikato)
Julie Ferguson (Hawkes Bay)
Chanel Huddelston (Hawkes Bay)
Shaan Waru (Hawkes Bay)
Teresa Te Tamaki (Auckland)
Victoria Blackledge (Auckland).
Not travelling reserves are:- Deirdre Hakopa; and Te Maari Mac Gregor (Hawkes Bay).

New Zealand’s Selica Winiata also played a season for the Minnesota Valkyries last year on an exchange program between the Valks and a NZ team. I’m not sure, but I believe Christy Ringgenberg then also spent a season playing in New Zealand as part of this exchange.

Images: USA Women’s 7s Teams, Rugby Magazine; New Zealand’s Winning Team from 2005 Hong Kong 7s, Rugby7.com.

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Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens Update

The Eagles’ Sevens team is in Hong Kong this weekend for the 2006 Hong Kong Sevens. I’ve posted about it before, but here is the USA Rugby release on the squad.

I did a little bit more digging and found the following from the Hong Kong Rugby Union

Cable & Wireless Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 Official Tournament Draw
The official tournament draw for the Cable & Wireless Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 (HKWRS) was held today at The Helena May in Central, Hong Kong. Twelve elite international women’s sevens rugby teams will take part in the ninth Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens, to be held on Friday 31 March and Saturday 1 April 2006 at the Hong Kong Football Club. The Cup Final of the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 will be played at the Hong Kong Stadium on Saturday 1 April at 2:54pm as part of the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens 2006.

2006 Elementary Rugby Training Course (Phase I & Phase 2)Despite pressures on the women’s rugby calendar from the Women’s Rugby World Cup later this year in Canada, the Cable & Wireless Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens 2006 again features a highly competitive mix of national teams and leading club sides from around the world. Defending champions, New Zealand’s Aotearoa Maori, are returning with a goal to maintain New Zealand’s perfect record as tournament champions in each of the eight Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens played to date.

Looking to unseat the Kiwis are last year’s Cup Finalists Australia, as well as national representative teams from the United States and The Netherlands, who have sent their first ever national side to the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens in 2006. Other contenders include the 2005 Asian Women’s Sevens Champions, Kazakhstan and last year’s Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens Plate runners-up Japan. China, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and the hosts the Hong Kong Women’s Sevens team round out the teams at this year’s Tournament, along with a team making its debut at the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens in 2006, Guam.

The cup final of the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens will again be played at the Hong Kong Stadium during the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens, (the final will be held at 2:54pm on Saturday 1 April 2006).

For today’s draw, the 12 participating teams were divided into pools of four. Four teams, (New Zealand, Australia, United States and Kazakhstan) have been seeded based on their past results in the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens and in recent international women’s sevens competitions.

Defending HKWRS Champions New Zealand are the tournament’s top seed in Pool A, followed by last year’s Cup finalists Australia in Pool B and 2005 HKWRS Plate champions the United States in Pool C. The 2005 Asian Women’s Sevens Champions Kazakhstan is seeded first in Pool D. Following this, the remaining eight teams were drawn at random to complete the tournament pools.

Now in its ninth successful year, the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens has grown into one of the top annual fixtures in the women’s rugby world, attracting an entertaining and competitive mix of international sides. The tournament is fully supported by the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union, the Asian Rugby Football Union and the International Rugby Board.

Today’s Tournament Draw was fittingly held at the historic Helena May, a legendary institution for women in Hong Kong. The Helena May was established in 1916 to provide for the physical and moral safety of newly emancipated women who were arriving in the Far East in unprecedented numbers. In 1994, the exterior was gazetted as a Historical Building, ensuring its existence for future generations. Today, the Helena May continues to provide a meeting place for women from a wide range of nationalities in Hong Kong.

The 2006 Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens is sponsored by Cable & Wireless. For more information on women’s rugby please visit http://www.hkrugby.com

And then here are the pools and schedule …

Pool A – New Zealand, China, Japan
Pool B – Australia, Singapore, Sri Lanka
Pool C – United States, Thailand, Guam
Pool D – Kazakhstan, Netherlands, Hong Kong

TOURNAMENT DAY ONE
Date: Friday, 31st March 2006
Time: 10:00am-6:00pm Venue: Hong Kong Football Club, Happy Valley

TOURNAMENT DAY TWO
Date: Saturday, 1st April 2006 Time: 9:00am-12:00nn Venue: Hong Kong Football Club, Happy Valley CUP

FINAL
Date: Saturday, 1st April 2006 Time: 2:54pm Venue: Hong Kong Stadium, So Kon Po

PARTICIPATING TEAMS: Australia Japan Singapore China Kazakhstan Sri Lanka Guam Netherlands Thailand Hong Kong New Zealand United States

Not sure how much it will be updated, but here is the official HK Women’s Rugby results page. The official Hong Kong Rugby Sevens site only features men’s information, not women’s.

More to come …

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