Merlins Host Surfers, Look To Best California Side In Rematch Of Season Opener

by | Sep 27, 2018 | Elite Women

Coming off a loss to Lindenwood in a non-league game, the Merlins Women’s Premier League (WPL) squad will host the San Diego Surfers this Saturday at 5pm Mountain Time. The California side has climbed back atop league standings after a win against Berkeley last weekend, surging ahead of the Merlins in conference points. Glendale remains firmly in second position, and will look to take down the Surfers as the playoff and post-season picture begins to unfold over the next few weeks.

Glendale Merlins vs San Diego Surfers

Photo by Linda Brothers

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Merlins Head Coach Luke Gross is less concerned with points standings than with the overall outcome of the season: “Of course we want to win every game, but what we’re ultimately looking for is a championship. League points don’t mean too much to me, but we are always playing to win.” The WPL Merlins season has been characterized thus far by a balance of new talent and experienced rugby players. Gross has said many times that roster selection has been a challenge because of Glendale’s exceptionally deep bench – a good problem to have for any competitive sports team.

The Surfers handed Glendale their only loss so far this season, defeating the Merlins 31-22 in week one. The Glendale side has since found its stride, winning each of its subsequent in-league matches, and putting up more than 40 points in every victory. Gross knows the San Diego won’t be easy, but feels confident his squad can take the win: “The Surfers are a physical team. We have to win at the tackle contest to be victorious, but we have the talent and the finishers to make that happen.”

The Merlins will play their next match at home, taking on Oregon Sports Union October 6 at 5pm Mountain Time. The team will then travel to Berkeley, California on October 13 to take on that team for the second time this season. 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

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, 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.


  1. Sarah Chobot (Captain)
  2. Jeanna Beard
  3. Melissa Finkelstein
  4. Joanna McElroy
  5. Sam Luther
  6. Joanna Kitlinski
  7. Rachel Ehrecke
  8. Amandine Chatelier
  9. Jenny Lui
  10. Hannah Stolba
  11. Nichole Wanamaker
  12. Julie Tordonato (Vice Captain)
  13. Christen Suda
  14. Justine Wypych
  15. Allison Hale


  1. May Learned
  2. Lexie Lundquist
  3. Charlotte Thompson
  4. Kris Peterson
  5. Leann Lam
  6. Gabbie Cantorna
  7. Denali Graham
  8. Madison Slaught