Glendale Merlins Kick Off Women’s Premier League Season

by | Aug 23, 2018 | Elite Women

This Saturday marks the start of the regular season of Women’s Premier League rugby, the highest level of female rugby competition in the country. The Glendale Merlins will travel to California, taking on San Diego WPL at 12 noon Mountain Time. Playing under the Merlins moniker for the second year, the Glendale side is being led by Head Coach and Director of Amateur Rugby Luke Gross, himself a 13-year professional rugby veteran.

Women’s Premier League Season

With long experience in the game, Gross is ready for the WPL kickoff: “These athletes will bring everything they have, both on and off the field. After a tough loss in last year’s final, they’ve got something to prove, and I’m certain they’re stronger, wiser, and better coming into this season.” Excited about his squad’s mix of experienced players and new talent, he added that he expects to be a force in the league: “This is the pinnacle of women’s rugby in the United States. We are playing to win every game.”

The Glendale Merlins Women’s Premier League squad has a well earned record of not simply competing, but winning over the course of the team’s ten-year history. Glendale’s WPL team won back-to-back championships in 2015 and 2014, and were runners up in 2017, 2016, and 2012. Under Gross, they’ll look to continue that success starting this Saturday. The Merlins first home match is September 8th, when Glendale hosts Berkeley WPL at Infinity Park.

Follow all of the Glendale teams on Facebook and Twitter for full-time scores on all games and additional information. For the 2018 season, the WPL Merlins will be playing on the Infinity Park Stadium pitch, opening for the professional men’s team, the Glendale Raptors. The full season schedule can be found at glendaleraptors.com.

If you are interested in joining the Glendale Women’s Rugby program, whether at the WPL or Division 1 level, contact the recruitment chair at glendalerecruitment@gmail.com, or come out to one of the practices to see the team in action. The WPL squad practices Tuesday and Thursday nights from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the Infinity Park turf pitch.

Starting 15

1. Sarah Chobot
2. Jeanna Beard
3. Helga Polheber
4. Charley Thompson
5. Joanna McElroy
6. Kris Peterson
7. Rachel Ehrecke
8. Joanna Kitlinski
9. Kelsie O’Brien
10. Hannah Stolba
11. Alli Hale
12. Julie Tordonato
13. Denali Graham
14. Danielle Ordway
15. Madison Slaught

Reserves

16. Lexie Lundquist
17. Sus Kitchen
18. Sam Luther
19. Andrea Prusinski
20. Leann Lam
21. Hannah Tennant
22. Kemi Adewunmi
23. JT Wypych