D1 Women's Rugby News

Glendale Merlins // Formerly Glendale Raptors

Women’s D1 outmuscled by Utah’s Lady Vipers

by | Apr 10, 2017 | D1 Women

GLENDALE – It was all about high flying offense when the Glendale Raptors Women’s D1 hosted the Utah Lady Vipers as part of a rugby double header at Infinity Park on Saturday. Yet despite holding onto a narrow halftime lead, the Raptors found themselves outmuscled in a 55-33 loss to their rivals from the west.

Raptors Women D1 vs Utah Vipers

Photo by Steve Oathout

The visitors were strong from the start, with Utah posting up multiple tries and a 12-0 lead in the opening minutes. The Raptors stormed back however, highlighted by Madison Slaught’s 95-meter try which gave Glendale a 21-12 lead at the 25-min mark. Glendale would get another try from Allison Hale, but the Vipers would also get a pair of tries before the break, leading to a 28-24 Raptors advantage heading into halftime.

The physicality of their opponents came as no surprise to the Raptors women, who did their homework entering the match.

“They’ve definitely have a lot of size, and we are a smaller team,” explained prop Mary Pezzulo.

The big pack of the Vipers produced a scoring onslaught to open the second half, bursting through with multiple tries to build up a 43-28 lead by the 58-min mark. Eight minutes later, Slaught would find the try zone again for Glendale to cut the visitors’ lead to 43-33, but it would be Glendale’s last, as Utah tacked on two more tries to close out the game for a final score of 55-33.

[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NGDwgde8x4[/embedyt]

Following the result, Glendale’s women will look to regroup, continuing to build what they have started this season.

“We’ve only had a few practice sessions and we’ve got a great mix of some young, brand new players and some experience,” Pezzulo explained. “So, we’ve just been trying to work together, trying to find a flow. The girls have all had a great attitude and the coaches have been really great, really patient.”

Like the Men’s Elite and D2 sides, a trip to Austin, Texas awaits on April 15 with the Raptors Women’s D1 side slated to face hosts Austin Valkyries this coming weekend.