By Carolyn Eckel
With their second win of the season, the Sacred Heart University women’s rugby team earned their first shutout on Sept. 24. They played against the Castleton Spartans with a final score of 56-0. The women are currently 2-1 coming off of their previous season with a record of six wins and 14 losses.
Michelle Reed is in her first season as the women’s coach since Sacred Heart rugby transformed from a club to Division I sport. Competing in the National Intercollegiate Rugby Association (NIRA) is an achievement for not only Reed, but also the players.
“The program would not be successful if these student athletes did not push through the frustration, pain and challenges,” said Reed.
The shutout at Castleton was a dominate win for Sacred Heart. After the first half of the game, the Pioneers collected 29 points with goals from sophomore Samantha King, junior Emily Migoni, junior Charlotte Tallman, junior Sarah Rodzevick and freshman Kaylee Hale.
“After every score we reminded one another that we are going to play like it was 0-0,” said Mignogni.
Going into the second half just as determined as the first, the Pioneers scored 27 consecutive points. Sacred Heart got goals from freshman Marissa Yost, sophomore Sunny Ravert, freshman Allie Rinaldi, Mignoni and Hale. Sacred Heart went on to defeat Castleton 56-0.
“I was extremely proud and excited,” said Tallman. “We had a lot of fun playing and it reminded us all of why we love this sport. It was nice to see that our hours of hard work was being reflected on the field and scoreboard.”
On Oct. 8, Sacred Heart will host their final home game against the West Chester Golden Rams at noon on Campus Field. The seniors will celebrate their senior night, along with all they have accomplished on the team.
“Our seniors have really created high expectations for themselves and their teammates. They have helped to create a competitive atmosphere at practice setting the bar higher each week. As for senior day, I expect their tenacity to continue and to spread across the team,” said Reed. “We will need them to step up to support their teammates and play their best, as we cannot and will not underestimate WCU. If Kate, Emily, Sarah and Charlotte play against WCU the way they did against Castleton, we will have a very competitive and fun senior day.”
The team is determined to continue their winning streak and the seniors are hoping to make the best of the remainder of their last season.
“It has been fun watching people grow and progress in the sport, I can’t wait to see what the rest of the season holds,” said Mignogni.