Women’s rugby dominates University of New Mexico

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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.”

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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.”

Toward the close of the second half, fans on the sidelines could sense the Lobos’ frustration. But despite the Lobos’ frustration, the Cougars continued their dominance until the end, scoring two more tries before the close of the game.

Even though the Cougars did not find the defensive challenge they were looking for, they kept the ball in Lobo territory the majority of the game.

“We still had a lot of the possession,” assistant coach Kara Remington said, “which is a little disappointing because we were hoping to play a little more defense. I thought we did do a good job when they did have the ball. We did a good job not giving up any territory.”

Despite the success the Cougars have experienced early on in the season, the players and coaches know more competition is still to come.

“We still need to be humble,” Waqa said, “because the competition is going to get better. We need to prepare for the best.”

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