Record low temperatures and several nor’easters didn’t block the BWRFC from a strong start to their 2018 spring season. After several weeks of intense conditioning at the Medford BSC, Boston Women’s partnered with the Boston Rugby Football Club to use their new bubble-covered turf facilities at Union Point in Weymouth.
Though Boston was unable to practice outdoors before the start of the season, they were undeterred as they traveled to New Jersey on March 24 to play a Gold Cup match against Detroit. The BWRFC prevailed 17-0, dominating in the scrums and bolstered by strong performances from scrappy flanker Katie Tomkewicz, flyhalf Dee Nash, and center Cathy Ordile.
The following weekend, Boston Women’s participated in the 6th annual MYRO High School Girls Rugby Jamboree at Lincoln-Sudbury HS, run by BWRFC alum Sarah Greeley. After two friendlies against Charles River and Beantown, all three women’s clubs worked with high school players to hone position-specific skills. Incredibly, over 300 athletes attended the Jamboree, showing just how large rugby has grown in Massachusetts.
In April, the BWRFC flew to Houston, Texas for the final set of Gold Cup matches. The team fell 20-10 to the Austin Valkyries on Saturday, with forwards Gael Yotts, Allie Brouckman, and Tomkewicz making their backline debut against a strong opposing kicker in windy conditions. Boston scrums dominated against the larger Austin pack, resulting in critical turnovers. Reflecting on the match, captain Stacey Markovic remarked, “The bounces of the ball were against us in game against Austin but solid defense from Tammy [Bouma] in the forwards and Marge [Reiss] in the backs kept the game close until the dying minutes.”
After a gumbo dinner hosted by the Bouma family, Boston came out ready to play in an early 9AM kickoff against Houston. Though they trailed in size, the forwards maintained consistent lineouts with jumpers Mick Conway and Elise Ordile challenging every throw. The backs showed their strength with heavy-hitting centers. Inside center Paige Stathopoulos flattened Houston both on offense and defense and outside center Gael Yotts ran phenomenal strike lines putting players on their heels all game. Rookie Meredith Outterson stepped on the pitch at lock in her first official match for Boston. Ultimately, Boston took home a win, 22-15. A multi-team social at Bubba’s Bar & Grill and tourist activities including visiting NASA, several breweries, a bat colony, and the zoo capped off another successful weekend for the BWRFC.
This weekend, Boston will host New Haven at Moakley pitch on their Friends & Family Day. Following the match, the annual Open Bar will be held at Sunset Cantina (tickets available here). Check out the match schedule for upcoming games.