Panthers sixth at provincial championships

By on June 8, 2017
Jamie Neill stares down her competition during league play in April earlier this season. (Herald file photo).

The Merritt Secondary School (MSS) girls rugby team returned from the 2017 high School Girls Rugby Provincials, held in Abbotsford over the last weekend in May with a 1-2 record — and a bunch of experience.

Coach Erica Matindale said she felt the team performed well in their sixth place finish at the tournament.

The Panthers lost their first game against Williams Lake 44-29, but bounced back with a 34-24 win over Brentwood College (Mill Bay) the following day.

In their final game, the Panthers fell to Houston by a single try. The final score was 24-17.

“The third [game] was a real nail-biter,” said Martindale. “We were behind early in the game and then [we] came back so strong. I feel like, in that third game, if we were given an extra two or three minutes we would have had them,” said Martindale.

Martingale said she felt that all-in-all, it was an excellent weekend for the girls team.

Emma Ferch was awarded the President’s 15 award, which is where one player is selected from each team and presented with a jersey, Martingale told the Herald.

Girls rugby at MSS saw a huge following this year said Martindale, adding that the team showed a lot of improvement throughout the season.

“We had a really big team this year — we started the year with nearly 40 players,” she said. “We’ve lost a few, but we still ended the season with a huge core group of girls.”

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