Cameron Doherty, Vikes Communications
VICTORIA – The UVic Vikes women's rugby team conceded their first points of the season but overcome a strong Lethbridge Pronghorn defence to pull away late in a 59-20 victory on Sep. 29 at Wallace Field in Victoria.
Madison Aberg scored five tries in the game, with Kara Galbraith adding two tries and a convert, Jennifer Appleby and Emily Belchos each recorded a try while Jess Neilson rounded out the scoring for the victorious Vikes with six converts.
Hailey Driscoll, Erin McFadden and Hannah Lopez each scored for the Pronghorns and Sarah Gordon was strong in the kicking game with one penalty goal and a conversion.
The Pronghorns wasted little time in breaking the Vikes two game long shutout streak when Driscoll scored the first try of the game just four minutes in.
It didn't take long for the Vikes prolific offence to respond however as Madison Aberg scored her first try of the day in the eighth minute.
A strong run from Shaye Tudor just two minutes later was halted just before the line by a tackle from Emiola Olalekan but UVic was able to maintain possession, allowing Kara Galbraith to score a try and give the Vikes a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
After a successful penalty kick from Gordon the rest of the first half was all Vikes.
Three more tries from Aberg and one from Jennifer Appleby were all converted by Neilson as she battled through some blustery conditions.
Hannah Lopez and Sara Cline were the standouts in the end of the first half for the Pronghorns as the two players threw everything they had against a sturdy Victoria defence.
For the last ten minutes of the half the Pronghorns held a great defensive line with dominating tackles to ensure they went into the halftime break down just 42-10.
Two straight UVic tries in the opening five minutes of the second half put away any doubt as to which team would emerge victorious but the Pronghorns defence hung tough with Abby Neudorf and Olalekan making strong tackles to push the UVic backline into their own half.
In the 67th minute of play Aberg broke through multiple Pronghorn defender her fifth and final try of the game. The third-year Vike from Calgary, AB now has nine tries in the last two matches.
The Pronghorns added two tries late through McFadden and Lopez but by then the damage was done.
When the final whistle blew the score was UVic 59, Lethbridge 20.
Next up for Lethbridge is a game on in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 1 against the UBC T-Birds.
The Vikes have a week off to rest and recover before what will be a rematch of last year's Canada West championship game against the Calgary Dinos in Victoria on Sunday, Oct. 15.
1st 2nd Final
UVIC: 42 17 59
LET: 10 10 20
4' UofL TRY #11 Hailey Driscoll Convert #10 Sarah Gordon
8'UVIC TRY #14 Madison Aberg Convert #10 Jess Neilson
10' UVIC TRY #15 Kara Galbraith Convert #10 Jess Neilson
16' UofL PENALTY KICK #10 Sarah Gordon
19' UVIC TRY #14 Madison Aberg Convert #10 Jess Neilson
23'UVIC TRY #14 Madison Aberg Convert #10 Jess Neilson
27' UVIC TRY #1 Jenn Appleby Convert #10 Jess Neilson
31' UVIC TRY #14 Madison Aberg Convert #10 Jess Neilson
44' UVIC TRY #15 Kara Galbraith Convert missed
46' UVIC TRY #12 Emily Belchos Convert missed
67' UVIC TRY #14 Madison Aberg Convert #15 Kara Galbraith
72' UofL TRY #24 Erin McFadden Convert missed
79' UofL TRY #15 Hannah Lopez Convert missed