Acadia hosts Women’s Rugby Championship this weekend
One year after their first-ever national title, the Ottawa GeeGees are tournament favourites heading into the 2018 U SPORTS Women’s Rugby Championship after holding the pole position in the Top 10 for the entire season.
The 2018 U SPORTS Women’s Rugby Championship, hosted for the first time by Acadia University, kicks off on Thursday at Raymond Field and concludes next Sunday with the gold-medal final at 4:30 p.m. ET. Live-streaming is available on USPORTS.LIVE.
The Acadia Axewomen had an automatic berth to the championship tournament, leaving the season’s focus on a conference championship that has alluded them since the 2015 season – the only time a team other than StFX had captured the title.
With the return of several key veterans from the 2015 AUS championship team along with seniors from a strong 2017 squad, the Axewomen went 4-2 on the season – sweeping a pair of matchups against both Saint Mary’s and UPEI, while dropping both matchups against the rival XWomen – including the regular sea- son finale. A missed conversion on the last play of the game gave the XWomen a 22-20 win and first place in the AUS standings.
Defending a national title can be a daunting task, however, the 2018 Ottawa Gee-Gees women’s rugby team is unbothered by lofty expectations. Powering through their exhibition and regular season schedule, the Garnet and Grey have racked up wins against nationally-ranked Laval, Carleton, and StFX, en route to a fifth- consecutive undefeated RSEQ regular season.
The StFX X-Women are the defending AUS champions and have captured the conference banner 19 out of the past 20 years. They have five national titles to their claim, winning in 2006, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016, while finishing as bronze medalists last season.
The Calgary Dinos make their third straight appearance at the U SPORTS national championship, looking for the first banner in the 10-year-old program’s history.
The Guelph Gryphons added another chapter to the program’s storied history with a 39-14 win over the Queen’s Gaels in the OUA Championship on Oct. 20. That victory completed a three-peat, which was also marked the eighth provincial banner in the past 11 years, and 16th overall in the quarter century of OUA women’s rugby.
The Victoria Vikes women’s rugby team wrapped up their Canada West season as the conference silver medallists for the third-straight year. The Vikes have not hoisted the conference banner since head coach Brittany Waters’ inaugural year in 2015 but are set to return to the national championships for their fourth appearance in program history.
For, Laval Rouge et Or, this is the second consecutive appearance at the U SPORTS Championship for the Rouge et Or, who won the silver medal in 2017, the best result in the program’s history.
The Queen’s Gaels are coming off a 2017 U SPORTS championship appearance and OUA silver medal and had their sights set on the conference and national titles once again.
The Acadia rugby team is ready to participate in U Sports Rugby Championship action this weekend.