BYU Advances to DI Elite Semifinal

Janette Taufa, BYU Women's Rugby 2018

Fullerton CA - Cougar Rugby News - Tuesday May 1, 2018

Women's D1 Elite/D1: April 20 - 22, 2018

The women's top tier of collegiate rugby has a rather unusual structure. D1 Elite and D1 compete against each other in the Round of 16 and quarterfinals and do not get separated until the results of the quarter finals. The winners of the quarter finals advance to the D1 Elite Semifinals while the losers compete against each other in the D1 semifinals.

The first quarterfinal was between Penn State against Virginia, Penn State advanced after beating JMU, and Virginia earned their place by putting North Carolina away. In what was the closest of the semis, Penn State advanced shutting Virginia out 57-0.

The second quarterfinal was between Life and UCF. Life advanced via disposing of Pitt and UCF had to get by Virginia Tech to book their spot in the quarters. Life took care of business, notching up triple digits in the process. The final score was 100-0.

The third saw BYU come up against UC Davis. BYU had prevailed against Arizona State the day before, while UC Davis put away Grand Canyon to book their spot in the next round. It was another one-sided affair as BYU showed their class and advanced to the D1 Elite semis courtesy of a 92-0 score line.

The final game to determine who would be placed in the Elite bracket and who would be in D1's bracket came down to Lindenwood and Chico State. Lindenwood saw off Stanford, while Chico State pushed their way through UC Santa Barbra to advance. The match went to Lindenwood in a 71-0 affair.

USA Rugby has released the semifinal match-ups and kickoff times (PDT) for the college championships occurring at Cal State Fullerton's Titan Stadium, California.

BYU to Host Women's College Rugby Sweet 16 Pool

BYU Women's Rugby Spring 2018

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - Cougar Rugby News

Provo, UT - In previous years dating back to 2008, the BYU Women's Rugby team travelled across the country to compete in USA Rugby's Women's Collegiate National events. For the first time in history, the Cougars are coming home to South Field Stadium , BYU Campus to host a DI West Coast Pool that includes DI Elite #4 BYU, the reigning Women's College DI Champion in UC Davis, up and comer and Gold Coast Conference #1 seed Grand Canyon University, and Gold Coast Conference #3 seed Arizona State University.

Come and support BYU, Arizona State, UC Davis and Grand Canyon University at the USA Rugby Women's Collegiate DI/DI Elite Rugby Nationals Sweet 16 West Coast Regional Pool hosted by BYU on South Field Stadium, Friday-Saturday April 20-21, 2018. Don't miss out on the game of the Cougars and the battle of the Northwest and Southwest, when UC Davis takes on Grand Canyon on Friday.

Friday Schedule: April 20, 2018
Game 1 - 11:00am MDT Brigham Young University (DI Elite #4) vs Arizona State University (Gold Coast 3)

Game 2 - 2:00pm MDT Grand Canyon University (Gold Coast 1) vs University of California - Davis (PRMC 2)

Saturday Schedule: April 21, 2018

Game 3: 11:00am MDT - Consolation game

Game 4: 2:00pm MDT - Quarterfinal (Winner Game 1 vs Winner Game 2)

Tickets available for purchase at the gate and on

To get updates follow us on:

Twitter: @BYUWomensRugby
Instagram: @byuwomensrugbyFacebook:

Grace Taito Nominated for Sorensen CPY Award

Grace Taito, BYU Women's Rugby 2017-2018

Saturday March 30, 2018 -  By FloRugby News, Alex Goff, creator of the Sorensen and Scholz Players of the Year Award, presented by the Washington Athletic Club.

Seattle, WA - A panel of coaches, administrators, and media members have selected the nominees for the 2017-18 MA Sorensen Award.

MA Sorensen was a trailblazing prop in American college rugby and World Cup winner, and she lends her name to the award for the best women's D1 college player of the season.

This award, first given out in the 2015-16 season, is sponsored by the Washington Athletic Club of Seattle. Hope Rogers of Penn State won in 2016, and Ilona Maher of Quinnipiac won in 2017. Maher is nominated again this year.

Fans are asked to help narrow this down to four finalists. To vote, go to this link -

College programs can also participate in a special vote (one vote per college team) here.

2017-18 Sorensen Award Nominees:

Danielle Ordway: Center, Davenport - A brilliant breakaway runner who has led Davenport to multiple major titles.

McKenzie Hawkins: Center, Lindenwood - A repeat nominee, Hawkins has helped Lindenwood to a national 7s championship and made the Lions one of the best teams in the nation.

Kaitlyn Broughton: Center, Life - A strong defender and attacker, Broughton is part of a dangerous Life Running Eagles backline.

Tess Feury: Fullback, Penn State - Multi-skilled, Feury has been capped by the USA and can play fullback or flyhalf.

BYU Holds Off UNM

Saturday February 24, 2018 - 1pm MST - Cougar Rugby News

Provo, UT - BYU visited UNM Lobos Saturday at Balloon Fiesta Park, Albuquerque NM. The sun was up, but with freezing temparature below 30 degrees farenheit, and a strong gust wind - it was no easy feat for both teams.

BYU Cougars started off with some early possession with the forwards trying to establish themselves. Cougars moved the ball out wide, and put Maya Wood in the corner, only to be called back for a forward pass. BYU did not let off from that early mistake, and attacked the defense with determination. Wood again scored by conversion by Kai Ah Quinn sailed wide.

With good ball from the forwards, the backs put Alisa Baker in the clear with a try under the post. Ah Quinn converts.

Ah Quinn featured in the next piece of play when she chip kicks over the defense and regathers the ball to score under the post. She converted own try to make it 19 - 0.

UNM attacked from that point and went all the way to BYU 5m line. As the pressure mounted, BYU had trouble violating the offside line, but the defense held on with some terrific tackling. UNM held onto the ball - phase after phase, but found themselves marching backwards, and minutes later, they were back on their own UNM 22m line, still holding onto possession. The Cougars defense stood strong from that point onwards.

BYU took over from there with a try scoring spree to Ruby Shreeve, Elle peterson (2), Grace Taito. BYU enjoyed the half time lead of 43 - 0.

BYU didn't let up from that point in the game. BYU added more points through tries to #9 Brooklyn Grange, #11 Maya Wood, Alisa Baker again, Elle Peterson with wing substitute Emily McFadyen, coming in for Maya Wood, taking over kick conversion duties.

BYU Handles USU in DI College Friendly

Saturday February 17, 2018 - 3:00pm Cougar Rugby News

Provo, UT - It was a fine day at Fort Utah Park when Utah State Women's Rugby visited Provo again at 1:00pm MST Saturday February 17, after a long hiatus spanning almost a decade. Fort Utah was the name of the first and second forts built in Provo when the settlers arrived in 1849. The first fort was located south of the Provo River about where I-15 crosses the Provo River today. It is the home of the official Provo City Rugby Field, one of the very few cities in the country with a designated rugby field for the community to play on.

It is only fitting that the game be played there, where (BYU) Womens Cougars and USU left off many years ago.

The game started really well for both sides. USU enjoyed some early possesion and put pressure on BYU's defense. The crowd can see talent on both sides, especially with USU #12 Jaynee Taufoou establishing some good dominating runs in the midfield.

BYU #9 Brooklyn Grange openned the scoring within 7 minutes into the game. This was followed by tries to Ogden, Taito, and McFadyen to put BYU up in half. BYU kickers struggled to convert these tries for more points. The score held 20-0 with BYU leading into halftime.

The second half started with BYU putting on some quick phases and #15 Janette Taufa dived over for the try beside the post. Reserve wing McFadyen converted to make it 27 - 0. Robinson ran a good line, and score with was again converted by McFadyen. BYU started to move the ball and make grounds as the defense started to tire. Taulapapa, Skipps, Taito, and Hinckley all added tries in the second half to end a good outing for Cougars. BYU had a good day in the tackling department as they held USU without any points for the day.

Taito & Skipps Lead BYU Past Dixie State

BYU Seniors pose after Dixie State Game Feb 10 2018

Saturday, February 10, 2018 - Cougar Rugby News

Saint George, UT - This last weekend, BYU’s Women’s Rugby Team traveled down south to play Dixie State University Women. With the sun shining and a cool breeze, the Cougars had an excellent first game introducing lots of new players in the newly renovated Legend Solar Stadium.

Led by a strong performance from BYU seniors, flanker Grace Taito 2016-2017 All American, and Sia Skipps, 2015-2016 All American No. 8, BYU, the game started with 15 minutes of feeling out, marred by multiple penalties, and infringements in the breakdowns, until a turnover ball from Taito went through the hands of Kathryn Stowers and on to Alisa Baker who sprinted past defenders to score under the post. Kainoa Ah Quinn converted to put BYU up 7 - 0. Dixie State applied some good pressure midway into the first half. BYU managed to put in some phrase plays together, and spun the ball wide for Genesis Hinckley to score out wide. Conversion went wide.

At 12 - 0 up, BYU was beginning to dominate the set pieces and the breakdown, with some good work rate from it's experienced loose forwards in Rachel Ogden, Taito, and Skipps. Lock Elle Peterson made break from BYU's 5m line and sprinted away, defense caught up with her, and the ever-present Alisa Blaker in support, carried it in for the try.

BYU kept on applying pressure and saw tries to multiple players in the first half, including Maya Wood (2), Taito, Skipps, Stowers, Janette Taufa to end the first half leading 54 - 0.

BYU made multiple changes at the beginning of the 2nd half. Dixie State came out strong from the break, and started applying pressure. Dixie drew the first points in 2nd half by scoring under post. Conversion went wide. Score remained at 54-5 BYU.

BYU Cougars at Dixie State Trailblazers - Preview

Monday February 10, 2018 - Cougar Rugby News Editor

Provo, UT: BYU will visit Dixie State University for a Women's Rugby Game, for the first time in program history this Saturday Feb 10, 2018.

BYU will feature some of the returning seniors with likes of 2015-2016 Women's Collegiate All American No. 8 Sia Skipps. She will be assisted in the backrow by Grace Taito, 2016-2017 Collegiate All American Flanker.

Emily Briggs, prop, who took part in the Women's DI Elite Final against Penn State in 2016 - just recently returned from a church mission, is expected to get some game time in her first outing since May 2016.

BYU is also expected to start some of the familiar names in program history. Notable names include Kai Ah Quinn (Jr All American Canada Tour 2017), Alisa Baker (pictured), and Scrumhalf/Center Kathryn Stowers (2015 High School All American).

Dallas McKee, Brianne Shaw, and Amenda Feao will lead Dixie State alongside some of the DSU seniors & returners from past year.

Kick off is set at 1.00pm MTN at the Legend Solar Stadium, Dixie State University, Saint George, UT. 

Fans, Parents and Supporters are welcome.

Photo: BYU Center/Wing, Alisa Baker, on the go forward drive. PC: Tabitha Sumsion, BYU Photo

BYU Women Takes on Alumni This Friday

Friday September 29, 2017 @ 6:00 MTN - Cougar Rugby News

The new look BYU Cougars will take on the Alumni team this Friday September 29, 2017 at 6:00pm MTN on Helaman Recreation Field, BYU Campus, 1600 N Canyon Rd, Provo UT 84604. This is becoming a tradition ever since the Cougars were officially added onto the Extramural Sports programs on October 8, 2015.

The BYU Women will feature some of the returning status such as Grace Taito taking up a new role as Captain of the team, Elle Peterson (lock), Telisha Tausinga (Hook), Kainoa Ah Quinn (Flyhalf/Fulback), Rachel Ogden ( Prop), and Lora Gubler (Flank).

Our Alumnis will feature some of the veterans, that campaigned for the Cougars in previous years - Monica Jackson, Nicole McCullogh, Justina Grubb, Chelsea Willes just to name a few.

Game is scheduled for Friday September 29, 2017 @ 6:00 MTN at Helaman Rec Field, BYU Campus. Referee: Aaron Ormsby


Game Recap:

Provo, UT: BYU started with 10 returners and 5 freshmans in the first half and held the Alumnis to a 8-0 lead. In the second half, BYU started working their depth with the students that are playing in their first rugby game. The Alumnis came back in the second half to score 3 quick tries and converted two.

Final Score: Alumni 19 BYU 8.




BYU Falls in Semi; Wins Thriller 3rd Place Matchup against Life

BYU Women's Rugby Spring DI Elite 3rd Place 2017.

Saturday May 6, 2017 - 1:00pm ET - Cougar Rugby News

MARIETTA, Ga. - 2016 National Champion Pennsylvania State University has again reached a Final following a 40-7 defeat of Brigham Young University Friday at the 2017 USA Rugby College 15s National Championships, setting up a Women's D1 Elite National Championship contest against Lindenwood University for Saturday, May 6.

In a rematch of last year's D1 Elite Final at Saint Mary's College, the Nittany Lions took the field against BYU in Georgia in defense of their title. The Cougars, who were narrowly defeated, 15-5, in Moraga, Calif., were up to the challenge Friday, striking first from a fifth-minute scrum in attacking territory. Full back Jessica Peterson made the touch-line conversion for Mackenzie Olsen's opener, and BYU held onto the lead through Women's Eagles Tess Feury's 15th-minute penalty kick until 30 minutes into the game.

Penn State moved into the ascendancy in terms of possession as the game grew, and was rewarded in the 28th minute when wing Sophia Pyrz took the ball over the line. Scrum half Carly Waters padded the lead to 15-7 leading into the break with a quick tap-turned-try on the final play.

BYU Through To DI Elite Final 4

Saturday, April 22, 2017 - Cougar Rugby News. Photo: Lexi Tenney in full flight towards tryline during a CWU friendly April 8, 2017. PC: Tabitha Sumsion, BYU.

Davis, California - BYU Women's Rugby booked a spot to National Championship Final 4 Series in Marietta, Ga., having won it's Friday matchups against Chico State in DI/DI Elite Spring Round of 16 and overcame a strong UC Davis side in the Quarterfinal.

On Friday's South West Regional, Chico State took the first lead over BYU, as fullback Darby McFall converted her own try. McFall also converted outside center Stefani Vicino-Bergerhouse's try, but the Cougars ultimately out-powered the California team 67-14:

Justina Grubb (2T)
Grace Taito (2T)
Jess Peterson (T, 5C)
Alisa Baker (T)
Emma Workman (T)
Lauren Cranor (T)
Nicole McCullough (T)
Rachel Ogden (T)
Breann Duce (T)
Alexa Tenney (C)

During Saturday's spring quarterfinal, BYU held a 25-7 halftime lead over UC Davis, as Baylie Duce, Nicole McCullough, Alisa Baker and Lindsey Sheriden scored tries (Jess Peterson added a penalty and conversion) for the Cougars. Rebecca Lehman converted Aggies wing Prai Harris’ try. The home side rallied in the third quarter (Sydnee Watanabe and Tonya Wessman tries) to close in at 25-19, but then three tries (Grace Taito, Rebekah Hebdon, Lora Gubler) from BYU in 10 minutes put the game out of reach, 44-19.

The Women's DI Elite and DI Spring semifinals have been determined. Both occur May 5-6 at Lupo Family Field, Life University, Marietta, Ga.

DI Elite National Championship - Friday May 5, 2017.

Penn State v BYU @ 2pm ET
Lindenwood v Life @ 4pm ET