Rugby team ends Canada West season with a win over Dinos
The University of Lethbridge Pronghorns women’s rugby team made sure Jillian Tataryn, Eden Hoff and Fisayo Latilo went out as winners. Mathematically eliminated from playoffs, the Horns capped off their Canada West season with a 23-15 win over the U SPORTS fifth-ranked and previously undefeated Calgary Dinos Thursday night at the University of Lethbridge Stadium, finishing the season at 2-4.
Statistically speaking, the Pronghorns managed to hand the Dinos their first loss of the season thanks to a pair of late tries that sealed the deal, but beyond the overall number crunching was the importance of giving their graduating trio the proper sendoff.
A win and a special post-game ceremony and photo session complete with a presentation of a personalized capital “H” for each veteran did so nicely.
For Hoff, a history of knee injuries dating back to her high school years threw up some roadblocks for the product of Claresholm.
But on Thursday night, she was recognized with a sendoff that produced some tears.
“I've had two knee surgeries,” said Hoff, who played on this year’s team with sisters Siena and Sofia. “I tore my ACL in my Grade 11 year and didn’t get to play in Grade 12. (But) I knew I wanted to come here, I wanted to be a Pronghorn since Grade 8. So it was always a dream and I worked towards that and I accomplished it.” But the knee problems resurfaced. “In my third year I tore my ACL playing sevens,” said Hoff. “So it was a major reconstruction, a full year out which was really hard and that was my fourth year.”
She still has another year of eligibility, but those knee injuries have Hoff hanging up the cleats.
“But this is what I've been working towards for five years, especially after being injured it was really important for me, not just for myself, but for my teammates in those five years,” she said. “It's just so awesome to be surrounded by my friends and my family in this program in this city. It’s just a perfect ending, I couldn’t ask for anything else.”