BYU Dominates West Women College

PMRC Rugby

Written by Alex Goff    Saturday, 22 October 2011 15:32

Sam Wright lineout take against Air Force 2011

Women’s Cougar Rugby of BYU rang up their third straight massive shutout, and their second in less than 24 hours as they pummeled Air Force 65-0 Saturday in Colorado Springs.

WCR beat Colorado 54-0 on Friday evening.

This is their third league win after joining the Eastern Rockies DI league in the West RFU (BYU has previously been part of the Pacific Coast), and they have yet to give up a point.

“Overall we played well on defense but we haven’t been tested much,” said Cougars Head Coach Tom Waqa. “We controlled the game and had a majority of the possession and territory. We have a whole bunch of talented girls, and the incoming freshmen have been picking things up really quick. I am very happy with that.”

Waqa said the games have not been pushovers, but the scores tell a different story, and the Cougar coach said he will definitely be looking for opponents who can put his team under pressure.

“Last year our toughest game was against Army,” he said. “We need to have those types of games earlier in the season.”

Still the BYU Cougars showed they can win two league games in two days, and are dominating their league.

In other league action, Colorado State defeated New Mexico 26-15. Club president Laura Whitney said the Rams did well to use their backs more than they have in past matches.

“We had a lot of injuries after the game with Air Force,” Whitney said. “We lost both our starting flankers. But we came together and just dealt with it and showed good organization.”

CSU improves to 2-1.

The latest league standings are:

West-North Women






BYU Women Cougars Shut Out CU

PMRC Rugby

Written by Alex Goff    Saturday, 22 October 2011 00:34

BYU Women's Rugby Tour - Colorado 2011

The Women's Cougar Rugby program started their two-match weekend trip to Colorado with a 54-0 shutout of Colorado in Boulder on Friday.

The BYU students have moved to the Eastern Rockies DI competition, and looked plenty strong in their first road league match of the season.

"We started a little slow," said Head Coach Tom Waqa. "It took some time to find our rhythm and settle in the beginning, and then we worked our way into the game. We really need work on being consistent day-in, day-out. I’ve challenged our leaders to lead from up front, and get us some good platform."

This they did as the game wore on, but Colorado had the Cougars on the back foot early and almost scored.

"They have some tough girls in the pack,"  said Waqa. "I’m glad our defense came through."

The Women Cougars were led by captain and flanker Samantha Wright and No. 8 Jordan Gray, who each scored three tries.

Next up is Air Force, as the Cougars hope to make it 3-0 in league competition (they beat New Mexico 75-0 October 8).

"We need to improve our overall performance against Air Force," said Waqa. "The girls are good at adjusting when we play doubleheaders like this; hopefully we continue to do that tomorrow. We played on a turf field for the first time, I’m just glad we came out without any major injuries."

Women’s rugby dominates University of New Mexico

PMRC Rugby

OCT 09, 2010 - By Steven Tew -

After coming off an 80-3 win last week over Utah State, the BYU women’s rugby team looked for a defensive challenge against the University of New Mexico but did not find it.

The Cougars pummeled their opponents this past weekend, 75-0, in their first home game of the season.

“I will take 75-0 anytime,” head coach Tom Waqa said. “Even though that was the score, we still need to work on many aspects in the basics area.”

Shanie Rowly on the move for the Cougars - Photo by Chris Bunker

The BYU women’s rugby team defeats New Mexico on Saturday at Fort Utah Park.

Players on the team agreed that although New Mexico did not provide much of a challenge, the Cougars still need to improve their game if heading to the Sweet 16 is still in their future. One such aspect of their game was the ruck.

Rucking consists of several players coming to the aid of a tackled player so she can pass it off and continue on down the field.

“That is always something we can work on to make cleaner,” said Chelsie Hill, a second-year player from Kennewick, Wash. “We still need to work on our rucks. It’s still hard to get the ball out.”

Getting the ball out from the ruck created opportunities for the Cougars to move the ball across the field to score again and again.

Senior Ela Wolfgramm said teamwork and moving the ball paid off the most in BYU’s victory against UNM.

“A lot of the plays were hands all the way out; we were passing around,” Wolfgramm said. “Because of our teamwork there was more intensity in this game than the other games.”

USA Rugby Announces 2011 College Academic Honor Roll

Sisters Monica & Kristi Jackson on USA Collegiate Academic Honor Roll 2011

July 1, 2011 - USARUGBY.ORG

BOULDER, Colo. — Sixty-five student-athletes from 30 schools have been named to the first USA Rugby College Academic Honor Roll.

The Honor Roll is a new initiative by USA Rugby’s College Department to recognize rugby student-athletes who excel in the classroom. To be eligible for recognition a student-athlete must by an A-side player with a 3.70 cumulative GPA and be a junior, senior or 5th year senior academically in at least their second season of competition at their current school.

Student-athletes were nominated by their head coach or team president and had to agree to submit a current transcript in order to be considered for the list. All nominees who met the criteria were named to the list.

2011 USA Rugby Men’s College Academic Honor Roll


US Collegiate All Americans Tour 2011 - Katie O'Malley, Kristi Jackson, Kay Onyekwere, Kara Longhurst Remington and Rebekah Siebach

July 14, 2011 - AUTHOR: USARUGBY.ORG

BOULDER, COLORADO - USA Rugby is proud to announce the 2011 Women's Collegiate All-Americans.  These student-athletes are recognized as the best collegiate women's rugby players in the country.  There are two lists of All-Americans, Division I and Division II. The Touring Squad will be named later this month and will compete in the Can-Am Games from July 28-31 in upstate New York.

The selection process to the Women's Collegiate All-Americans was a robust and collaborative effort.  Selectors included Martha Daines (Women's Collegiate All-Americans Head Coach) as well as coaches from the age-grade to senior national team ranks.

Pete Steinberg (Women's National Team Head Coach), Ric Suggitt (Women's Sevens Team Head Coach), Bryn Chivers (Women's Under-20s Head Coach) and Alex Williams (Women's High Performance Director) contributed to the selections.

The list of Division I All-Americans includes 34 student-athletes from 17 different universities and colleges across the country.  The 34 athletes on the DI list and 28 representatives on the DII list were selected from a pool of nearly 12,000 women’s collegiate rugby players.

Selectors used the fall and spring seasons to construct their player pools for All-American selection.  The National All-Star Championship at Founders Field in Pittsburgh, Pa., last month and the DI and DII National Championships served as opportunities for selectors to refine the pool to the top players in each division.

In addition to having the honor of being named an All-American, many of these student-athletes have earned invitations to a variety of national team assemblies:

Army Holds Off BYU for Trip to Women's Final


Written by Pat Clifton Friday, 13 May 2011 16:08
Kristi Jackson charges down the line for BYU against Army. Dobson Images.

A huge second half effort almost lifted Cougar women’s rugby over Army, but the women of West Point proved just fit enough to hold them off, winning Friday’s DI women’s college semifinal 29-20 at Stanford.

The Cougars jumped out to an early lead with a try from Tressa Tenney, but Army ticked of the next 12-straight points with a try and conversion from flanker Anne Lee and a try from fullback Jess Sexauer. Rebekah Siebach then scored the Provo women’s second try, but it too went unconverted.

Kayla Orvik re-extended Army’s lead with a converted try just before intermission, giving the Cadets a 19-10 advantage at halftime.

The Cougars had all the motivation coming out of the break, putting relentless pressure on Army, and Siebach scored her second try of the game to pull the Cougars within a single strike at 19-15.

The Cougars went directly back on the offensive. Multiple impressive mauls ended inches short of pay dirt and numerous phases added to an obvious overload out wide. Minutes of Cougar work had let to this overload, but it was thwarted by a heroic tackle from Sexauer, who closed the gap between her and the ball carrier swiftly and delivered a crushing blow.

“When there’s barely anytime left in the game and a tackle’s on the line, you just have so much more motivation to get over there,” said an exhausted Sexauer. “I was hurting at halftime, I’m not going to lie. I was tired, but when you know the game’s over when you miss that tackle, you’re not going to miss it. She actually knocked me pretty good. I felt a little woozy and the trainer wanted to take me out, but if the game’s on the line you’ve got to play.”

One Try Sends BYU to Final Four


Written by Jackie Finlan ( - Saturday, 30 April 2011 18:26

Kylie Maclennan and Monica Jackson on defense against Navy. (Dropkickphotos)

Scorelines don’t always tell the story of the game. Women's Cougar Rugby defeated a fiesty Navy team 7-0 during today’s Women’s DI College Championship quarterfinals, but WCR coach Tom Waqa felt the score was a bit misleading.

"It was a very tough game, and our girls left it all out on the field," Waqa said. "Navy is a good team and they came to play, but we wanted it more. We dominated every aspect of the game, and played in Navy's half a lot. We should have scored more, but the weather conditions didn't help. We'll take the win, though, and use the victory going forward."

Both sides came out with a specific game plan to neutralize the other's strengths. Navy did a good job of shutting down WCR's ultra potent backline, while the Cougars focused on turning over the ball and answering the Midshipmen's physical forwards.

"The girls stuck to the game plan and defended the fringes very well," Waqa said. "Credit goes to the forwards, who created turnovers in the set pieces and drove Navy's scrum off the ball - even in the last 10 minutes when we were down to seven in the scrum."

Although WCR struggled to consistency and finishing scoring opportunities, inside center Kristi Jackson rose to the challenge of Navy's pressure, and accounted for the game's only try, which Star Bollinger converted.

"It was a perfectly executed play that began from midfield scrum," Waqa said. "She broke the line and did the rest herself. In my opinion, Kristi is the best inside center in the nation."

As mentioned, Navy had an opportunity to capitalize on Cougar yellow card with 10 minutes remaining, but WCR's defense rose to the task, and kept Navy off the scoreboard.

BYU, Navy Prepare for Quarterfinal Bout

Written by Jackie Finlan - Friday, 29 April 2011 20:39

Keelia Harker in action against UCLA. BYU 30 UCLA 10. (Dan Paul photo)

A tremendous quarterfinal match awaits in the Women's DI College Championships, as Women's Cougar Rugby (WCR) and Navy prepare for tomorrow's face-off. Both teams put about 20 points between themselves and their competitors, and received well-earned berths to the Round of 8.

WCR defeated SoCal #2 team UCLA 30-10. The Bruins put in a good showing and challenged the Cougars early, scoring first to put the pressure on WCR.

"Credit goes to UCLA. They're here to play and came at us," WCR coach Tom Waqa said. "I was impressed with our girls; they didn't panic. They stayed focused and answered back immediately."

Rebekah Siebach relieved some pressure with a try to even it up, and then Kristi Jackson and Kara Remington followed suit. Star Bollinger hit a conversion for the 17-5- lead at half. Once again, the weather conditions and narrow field dimensions restricted the wide-open game for which both teams are known, but WCR adapted better to the restrictions.

"A truly good team doesn't need perfect conditions to execute," WCR captain Kara Remington said. "You've got to run with it and be ready to look for different ways to play. You make do with what you have."

UCLA played a similar game to WCR, sucking in the defense with aggressive punches around the fringe before sending the ball wide. The Cougars had a couple close calls out wide but some scrambling defense managed to kill the Bruins' overloads.

BYU Women Win Pac Coast Championship

Written by Jackie Finlan -   Sunday, 17 April 2011 10:15

BYU Womens Cougars pose after beating Stanford 24 - 7

It's been years in the making, but now Women's Cougar Rugby can join the very short list of teams that can say: Stanford isn't invincible. Unless you're Penn State, which has split the last six DI college titles with the Cardinal, it seems that Stanford competes in an elevated tier of play, and is everyone's rival on the West Coast. But now WCR can officially consider itself a peer of the California powerhouse, having defeated Stanford 24-7 yesterday for the Pacific Coast Championship.

"It was two really good teams going at each other," WCR coach Tom Waqa said. "It was one of those games you'd expect at the end of the [national] tournament. Stanford has never been a bad side, but we came out to play. We contested every play as if it was our last. Full credit goes to the girls for responding to the adjustments needed from yesterday [against UC Davis]. The team gave it their all; there were no individual efforts."

Heading into the final against Stanford, WCR knew it could not make the mistakes it made against UC Davis. UCD surprised the Cougars at the beginning of the game by scoring first, and a lack of consistency in retaining possession resulted in a jarring game. UC Davis had the edge in the forwards, while WCR had the edge in the backs, and a lot of pressure was put on its speedy backline to score points when spurts of momentum presented themselves.

Saturday was a different story. Ten minutes in, Chanel Arts barreled over the try line. Kristi Jackson further stressed the home team with another try shortly afterward. The scoreboard took a break for awhile, before Rebekah Siebach put another five-pointer on the board. Star Bollinger slotted two extras for the 19-0 halftime lead.

BYU Women Heads to Pac Coast Final

Written by Jackie Finlan - Friday, 15 April 2011 21:49

BYU lineout take against UC Davis 2011

Women’s Cougar Rugby (WCR) is the first of the Pacific Coast teams to secure a spot at DI college nationals. With its 45-22 win over UC Davis at this evening’s territorial semifinal, WCR heads to tomorrow’s final against the winner of Stanford v Chico State.

“It was a tough game for us,” WCR coach Tom Waqa said. “Led by Delaney Chapman, UC Davis played their hearts out. We were definitely tested, and they put a lot of pressure on us. The score doesn’t tell the story of the game.”

UC Davis caught WCR off guard and scored first. The Cougars fought back to a 17-10 halftime lead, but a lack of consistency prevented the team from sustaining momentum.

“There were spots where we were brilliant, but then we’d lose it,” Waqa said. “We were lucky that we scored during the good spots.”

"It was a good game, but they worked the ball well through the backs and had a stronger second half to pull away," UC Davis' Chapman said. "Both sides played hard and it was a tough game."

Rebekah Siebach led with three tries, while Kylie Maclennon, Kayla Ellingson, Kristi Jackson and Chanel Arts also cross for five-pointers. Star Bollinger notched five conversions.

“It was a tale of two sides,” Waqa continued. “We had the advantage in the backs, and their work in the breakdown was phenomenal. They had the better of us in the forwards."

UC Davis took advantage of some basic mistakes in the fourth quarter to tack on some more points, but the comeback evolved too late.

Looking ahead, Waqa saw some obvious areas of improvement on which the team must shore up before tomorrow’s match.