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Fall 2008 Game Summaries

DWRC Preseason | VLS Scrimmage | Norwich | Harvard (Radcliffe) | Vassar | Vassar B's | Yale UMass |Brown | Brown B's |UConn |UMass-Brown B's

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DWRC Preseason

Intense Training and Successful Warm-up Matches Highlight DWRC Pre-Season

The DWRC returned to campus on September 6 with an ambitious mission- in two short weeks, be prepared to compete (and WIN) in a very tough NERFU Division I Conference. It doesn't get any better than this- our lives have consisted of double sessions, film and classroom time, lifting sessions, timed runs, lots of skills work, and warm-up matches as we enjoy Hanover without classes, hanging out with friends, and the beautiful early-fall weather.

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DWRC Scrimmage vs. Vermont Law School
September 11, 2008
Warm-up Scrimmage Against Vermont Law School Showcases DWRC Speed

Vermont Law School's Rugby Club took the short trip from South Royalton on Thursday night for our first scrimmage of the fall season. This was a casual "friendly", and since VLS showed up with only 9 players, the Big Green played the first half of the game with a starting 15 against the VLS players plus 6 of Dartmouth's less-experienced players. It was quickly apparent that the VLS players were, for the most part, also pretty new to the game, as Dartmouth's backs met little opposition during their quest for tries out wide. Dartmouth's forwards were not, however, "on their game", finding it difficult to ruck against opponents who just weren't sure what they were doing. At half players were moved around to create a more interesting scrimmage and to provide some tackling and rucking practice, and the second part of the match was played in good spirit and with less lop-sided results. Social Officers Monica Martin de Bustamante '08 and Emily Mason-Osann '11 started off the social season with a fantastic lasagna dinner in the Deevy Room for VLS and the DWRC after the scrimmage.

DWRC 17 vs. NORWICH UNIVERSITY 12
September 13, 2008
DWRC Avenges Spring Loss to Local Rivals In Pre-season Match

The spector of a tough spring loss to NERFU D-II Champion Norwich University loomed as the DWRC travelled to Northfield, Vermont last Saturday. The unseasonable afternoon heat was metaphoric. Norwich was "fired up" - already four weeks into their season, they looked organized, big, rested, and athletic as all fifty of them warmed up across the field, wearing their "corps of cadets" t-shirts. Meanwhile the Big Green felt as though they may have "jumped into the frying pan", arriving with their somewhat rag-tag, sore, and blistered pre-season team, still two weeks away from the start of the school year.

The first ten minutes of the match were played as though the script would bear out the opening scene- Norwich controlled possession, coming back inside time and again with big forwards as the Big Green struggled for organization and urgency up front. Norwich put points on the board first as they were awarded a penalty try in the corner for a high tackle on a breaking winger. The conversion was made at center-post. The DWRC heeded the wake-up call, however, and a much more focused and aggressive Green 15 stormed back down the pitch on the kick-off, answering the Norwich try with one of their own in a nicely executed multi-phase team effort. The match went back and forth as Norwich suffered a high number of penalties and knock-ons and both teams had trouble in line outs. Dartmouth's impressive speed and improving handling proved to be too much for Norwich, particularly in the centers, with Monica Martin de Bustamante '08 leading the DWRC attack up the middle through somewhat bewildered defenders. Had Dartmouth exhibited more patience at the try line, they would have found themselves with a more comfortable lead, but at the eighty-minute mark, they'd made it into the try zone enough to come away with the win, albeit with plenty to work on as they headed into their final week of preparation for the league opener at Harvard on Sunday, Sept 21, at 1:00 pm. Points: Martin de Bustamante 10, Rachel Forman 5, Annie Jones 2

The Norwich University athletics department also provided a game summary, which can be found here.

 

DWRC 41 vs. HARVARD UNIVERSITY (RRFC) 5
Sunday, September 21, 2008
DWRC Runs Away with the League Opener; The Big Green Puts a Damper on Crimson Weekend
[Dartmouth Men 34, Harvard 5 (September 20)]

Boston enjoyed spectacular weather last weekend, with the exception of a Big Green Pressure System that hung over Harvard's rugby pitch for two days straight. The Dartmouth men expected a harder match from former D-I powerhouse Harvard, but the Big Green's intense pre-season work and tough early matches paid off as Harvard was unable to contain Dartmouth's hard-running centers and outside backs.

More of the same ensued on Sunday, as the DWRC capitalized time and again on the dis-organization of the Harvard open-field defense and ran the ball into the try zone from the centers and back three. Dartmouth's domination in this first match was somewhat expected, as Harvard continues to struggle with player recruitment and the Big Green continues to develop an exciting offensive game plan. Harvard's tackling was solid, and forced the DWRC to work hard on ball retention and offensive rucking. The Crimson #10 was also an aggressive and solid runner, scoring Harvard's lone try off a messy Dartmouth scrum. The DWRC will have to do a lot more work in set pieces, handling, and team defense before it is ready to take on the tough teams coming up in the rest of its schedule. Vassar, on the dance card for this coming weekend, were National Tournament competitors last year, and showed they haven't lost much as they ran over Yale in their recent league opener.

The athletes of the DWRC, however, have already made one thing very clear- they are exciting to watch, they are true competitors, they love playing together, and they have the ability to get the ball into the try zone! Points: Rachel Forman '09 (wing) 10, Meg Thorn '11 (outside center) 10, Kristen Liu '11 (wing) 5, Annie Jones '11 (flanker/kicker) 6, Caroline Cima '10 (fullback) 10

DWRC 5 vs. VASSAR 12
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Fierce Goal Line Stands are Not Enough to Prevent a Physical Vassar Squad from Squeaking out a Win

The good news coming out of Saturday's match is that Dartmouth showed tremendous heart, grit, and tenacity under pressure. The not-so-good-news is that The D.W.R.C. struggled with possession in rucks, set pieces, and handling and had to rely on the above qualities to keep them in the game. Vassar pinned Dartmouth to their own try line for most of the first half, but Dartmouth refused to fold and rejected Vassar time and again. This was the first match of the Big Green's early season in which their opposition were aggressive and determined in the breakdowns, and Dartmouth came away with a better appreciation of the importance of dynamic close channel defense. The half ended scoreless, with Dartmouth rarely having a run with the ball.

The second half started on a better note for the Big Green, with an opening drive that put them in scoring position. It was not to be, though, and the Brewers rucked themselves back into control of the match. Vassar's poor handling in the second half, and the ensuing scrumdowns, became a disadvantage for Dartmouth as they found their wheeling skills, dispossessed Dartmouth at nearly every scrum, and charged up the pitch using #8 pickups every time.

Vassar finally pushed their way into the try zone around the 60th minute, and the conversion was not made. Dartmouth answered shortly thereafter with an unconverted try of their own in one of the few 15-person-rugby series of the day. The score remained 5-5 until the 75th minute, when Vassar successfully took a scrum against the head and with a #8 pickup got behind the Big Green's forwards, setting up a series of successful rucks that resulted in the final (converted) try of the match. Dartmouth had one more chance to break it open after regaining possession at their own 18 meter line in the 80th minute, and fullback Caroline Cima was on the burst and ready to take on any comers in an 80 meter track meet, but a missed connection and un-catchable pass dashed the D.W.R.C.'s hopes to end the match in a tie.

Throughout the match the D.W.R.C.'s fleet backline had little chance to showcase their speed, as poor passing caused in part by defensive pressure from Vassar's strong numbers 9, 6, 8, and 13 was the norm rather than the exception throughout the match. But just as flanker Mallory McQueen '09 and #8 Michelle Dunn '09 led the forwards in the rebuttal of the determined Brewers at the ruck, center Monica Martin de Bustamante '08, #10 Val Hanson '11, and Winger Rachel Forman '09 were defensive standouts and tacklers throughout the match.
Points: Monica Martin de Bustamante '08, 5

The Vassar athletics department also provided a game summary, which can be found here.

DWRC B's 10 vs. VASSAR B's 10
Saturday, September 27, 2008

Dartmouth's first full B-side match of the season was highlighted by some nice phase play and ball movement, and the debut of 10 rookies on Dartmouth's team, and 4 more donated to Vassar's team to fill out their side. The rookies had had only 1,2, or 3 days of practice, so the match was organized as a learning game, with lots of coaching from the referee and the few experienced players in the match. Dartmouth dominated play and it was an exciting beginning for a great group of rookies! Points: Theresa Cassano '11, 5; Allison Clark '11, 5

The Vassar athletics department also provided a game summary, which can be found here.

DWRC 30 vs. YALE 15
Saturday, October 4, 2008
Bulldogs Left Behind by the DWRC "Greyhounds" as The Big Green Races for the Corners and Another League "W" against Yale

Prologue (yes, there's a prologue!) by Coach Deb Archambault '85

The DWRC's young forwards have been challenged by every team they've come up against this season. With only three players with more than a year of rugby experience, the DWRC pack has had to "learn by doing". Their education has been enhanced by competing against hard and experienced forwards who know their way around less-than-vigilant referees, around the bottom of a ruck, and around the wheel of a scrum. Every team that Dartmouth has come up against, without exception, has chosen as a game plan a pounding, vertical attacking, forwards game. Every team, without exception, has also had handling problems in their backlines, resulting in a plethora of offensive scrums for the DWRC, and corresponding opportunities for the defensive forwards to wheel, drive, and pressure the Big Green forwards in and around those scrums.

When we talk and write about the DWRC this fall, it's easy to overlook the work that these dedicated forwards are putting into their own game, and the team's performance, because it's easy to forget where they, and the team, started, and because, on our team, we have very high expectations. But, before I go on now to tell you all about another "Day at the Races" for the DWRC and our fleet-footed back line, I wanted to take a moment to appreciate the fearlessness, hard work, and steady improvement of our forward pack, led by Captain Michelle Dunn '09. With their determination and ferociousness, our team is getting better and better, and we are in a solid position as we head into two more tough league matches, and what promises to be intense playoffs.

Match Report:

The Eli's proved no exception to this year's common style of play in the Silver Conference of NERFU DI, as their forwards crashed and pounded their way to two tries in the first half of Saturday's match against the DWRC. The DWRC was on the board first, however, as Dunn '09 recovered a loose ball from a Yale lineout on the Dartmouth 40 and #9 Ilda Bajraktari '11 spun the first of many balls out to set the line in motion. Winger and back's captain Rachel Forman '09 raced 20 meters up the far side of the pitch prior to offloading to looping center Monica Martin de Bustamante '08, who put the ball down for the try after her own 30 meter run. Martin de Bustamante was to have the second try of the match as well, as the DWRC took advantage of a quick tap on a Yale penalty at the 40 meter mark. One pass from #10 Val Hanson was all that was needed as Martin de Bustamante shed several flat-footed defenders and easily found the try zone. The score stood 10-10 at half, largely because Dartmouth had trouble keeping or re-gaining possession as they arrived at rucks with less purpose than needed, and as rucks dissolved into layers of Eli bodies lying on the ball without official reprimand.

The second half went a bit more smoothly despite Dartmouth's continued malaise in the ruck and in defense of the inside channel. Repeated absorption of the offense caused Dartmouth to suffer through long stretches of somewhat static defense. This was punctuated by an occasional turnover and generally effective and varied offensive play by the Big Green, mixing in vertical attacks, well-placed kicks, and an exciting spread game. Dartmouth's 3rd try occurred when Yale attempted to send a big flanker up through the centers, where she was met head-on, and stripped of the ball, by Martin de Bustamante. The fierce center then ran hard and set up looping #10 Val Hanson with a bounce-pass for her first try of the season. DWRC try #4 occurred directly thereafter, on the Yale kick-off, as #8 Annie Jones '11 fielded a bounced kick and set up a quick ruck. Bajraktari delivered blindside to Hanson and then Martin de Bustamante, who managed another 25 meter run before #15 Carolina Cima '10 kicked it into high gear for the last 40 meters with the off-load in hand. Try #5 came shortly thereafter, begun in a battle of two aggressive wingers as Kristen Liu '11 ripped the ball away from Yale's winger, got a great quick ruck from supporting forwards and once again set the backline in motion as the ball went out wide to Caroline "lightening" Cima, who sidestepped a defender before off-loading to Forman. Forman cut back in and managed the touchdown despite a last-minute tackle by a Yale cover-defender. Yale answered with an opportunistic try of their own as the DWRC attempted to spread the offense again at the kick off, but Yale's inside center took advantage of a poor connection in the Dartmouth midline, cherry-picked the pass and ran forty meters for Yale's last 5 points of the match. The score stood 25-15, and the DWRC was almost done for the day. The final try came as center Meg Thorn penetrated the defense with a nice run up the middle and found winger Kristen Liu eager and waiting to finish off her well-played match with a spirited sprint to the try zone. Second Row Meghan McDavid '10 played a great offensive support game and scrumhalf Ilda Bajraktari showed composure in the face of substantial defensive pressure, returning the favor twofold to her opposite number and causing numerous Yale turnovers. With most of Dartmouth's tries scored in the corners, none of kicker Annie Jones' strikes found the uprights despite solid attempts. Points: Martin de Bustamante 10, Forman 5, Liu 5, Cima 5, Hanson 5.

DWRC 23 vs. UMASS 17
Saturday, October 11, 2008
UMass tests the Big Green up front and in the back three, but Dartmouh's superior Fitness and Speed kicks in as they come back in the second half to dominate Cross-Conference Rivals

On a glorious fall day at the spectacular Corey Ford Rugby Clubhouse and Brophy Field, the DWRC was fired up to take the wind out of the sails of current "Jade" Conference leaders and long-time rival UMASS-Amherst. Taking the pitch after the DRFC's hard-fought league loss to undefeated league rival Army, The Women of Dartmouth Rugby were doubly inspired to fight for this cross-conference win and to put the "Jade" Conference of NERFU DI on notice that the "Silver" Conference is where the toughest competition is to be found this season.

Dartmouth's training focus this week, "the breakdown", paid off with much-improved rucking and inside channel defense. The D.W.R.C. needed, on average, just three phases to cause a UMASS turnover, giving the Big Green much more offensive opportunity than they enjoyed during their sole season loss to Vassar, whose rucking abilities were on par with UMASS. Additionally, Dartmouth was able to launch 20 (of 21) successful counterattacks as UMASS continued to kick away possession despite Dartmouth's ability to move the ball back up the pitch. The D.W.R.C. experienced significant and frustrating handling errors and set piece difficulties, but Dartmouth's perseverance, aggression, fitness, and speed was enough to hold off an athletic UMASS side.

UMASS wasted little time in revealing their two-dimensional game plan- taking advantage of the D.W.R.C.'s inexperienced forwards in set pieces, and using their significant kicking ability in an attempt to keep a territorial advantage. UMASS was on the board first with a well-executed pushover try of Dartmouth's own put-in at the five meter mark at the end of the first quarter. This was followed five minutes later with a pushover maul in an overloaded lineout from the 12 meter mark, as the lady Minutemen stacked their lineout and caught Dartmouth asleep, putting the score at 0-10. The second prong of UMASS's offensive game plan met with much less success, as Dartmouth's accomplished back three got a real workout, putting the D.W.R.C. in good position, time and again, with hard counterattacks, and causing UMASS to commit a rash of penalties as they attempted to re-gain possession at tackles with very little defensive support. Dartmouth spent much of the second quarter knocking on UMASS's door, unable to capitalize on penalty after penalty because of handling issues and impatience at the tryline. The D.W.R.C. finally settled for a penalty kick, closing the half with a score of 3-10.

The second half opened with the D.W.R.C. in control of the tempo and the pitch. Flyhalf Valerie Hanson '10 dropped the kickoff deep into Minuteman territory, and the Dartmouth forwards quickly re-gained possession in scoring position. A poor pass out from the ruck didn't stop winger Rachel Forman '09 C as she scooped up the ball and cut back in front of her forwards for "take two". This time #9 Ilda Bajraktari '11 was able to deliver a good ball to #12 Monica Martin de Bustamante '08 who released looping #10 Hanson '10 for the try. Dartmouth brought it right back on the ensuing kickoff, and took six minutes to produce the go-ahead try for the Big Green, again off the blindside of a ruck, again with a Martin de Bustamante assist, this one to hard-fighting, crashing #13 Meg Thorn '11. The score stood at 13-10, and UMASS answered by kicking themselves back into scoring position, and after many adjustments for both teams in set pieces, scored off a five meter set scrum. A converted try put UMASS up, 13-17, with 20 minutes to play. Dartmouth played with increasing confidence and composure, however, un-phased by repeated dropped or bounce passes and inspired by great rucking from their forwards and great counterattacks from their back three. The next D.W.R.C. assault on the UMASS tryline began from a 15 meter lineout and finished on the opposite side of the pitch with a touchdown by fullback Caroline Cima '10 at the 72 minute mark, and Dartmouth took back the lead at 18-17. The final try of the match came just before the whistle, on a well-executed 60 meter run from winger Kristen Liu '11 after her recovery of one last high kick from UMASS's outside center off a UMASS line out.

Standouts for the Big Green were #7 Michelle Dunn '09 C in lineout jumping and offensive support, #6 Mallory McQueen '09, #12 Martin de Bustamante, and the back three – Cima, Forman, and Liu.

Points: Martin de Bustamante 3, Hanson 5, Cima 5, Thorn 5, Liu 5.

DWRC 5 vs. BROWN 10
Saturday, October 18, 2008
DWRC Nearly Topples Nationally Ranked #1 Brown in Last League Match, Giving Rugby Alumni a Great Show on Capital Campaign Kick Off Weekend

Cheers of encouragement echoed off the Kilmartin Deck at the Corey Ford Rugby Clubhouse this weekend as the current DWRC continued our long tradition of competitive and exciting rugby and provided Dartmouth Rugby alumni with nail-biting action against undefeated, top-ranked Ivy League rival Brown. Tenacious defense, efficient rucks, aggressive contact, and dangerous runners were highlights shared by both teams on this beautiful fall afternoon, but Brown managed to best the Big Green as Dartmouth struggled to find their offensive rhythm and lost scoring opportunities because of impatience at the tryline.

Dartmouth's young and continually-improving side took the field on a mission- to show the rugby world that they are "back", and that they can play with the best.

The DWRC proved they are not afraid of hard work- Brown dominated play for the first fifteen minutes of the match, methodically attacking close to the ruck and using the blindside at every opportunity before exploring the potential for outside back penetration. The Big Green answered by continually recycling their wall of defense and making solid tackles on outside strikers. Both teams fought hard in contact and both teams suffered multiple penalties for on-the-ground infractions as a result of their aggressive play. Dartmouth even had to play "one woman down" for 10 minutes in the second half as winger Kristen "Outlaw" Liu '11 did her time in the sin bin for a high tackle on her opposite number.

Brown was on the board first at the 18 minute mark after a poor pass from a DWRC line out resulted in a Brown scrum at the 22 meter. Brown executed their signature fullback fill between the centers off a dummy center switch, with U.S. U20 fullback Blaine Martin making it past the Dartmouth defensive line and sliding in for the try under DWRC #15 Caroline Cima '11's valiant attempt at the corner-flag. Brown's second try came five minutes later as #9 Yadi Ibarra made a 20 meter run on a quick-tapped penalty from Brown's 40 and the Bears settled into patient, patterned offense. Dartmouth struggled under pressure in a set scrum, and Brown capitalized on poor passing to re-gain possession and work their way into the try zone. Ibarra put the ball down after one last ruck, but that would be it for the normally high-scoring Bears, who averaged 48 points/match prior to their encounter with the "Big Green Wall".

Much of the second quarter was played on Brown's end of the pitch, as the DWRC began controlling rucks and finding space to penetrate through the centers. Chip kicks added pressure to the Brown defense and pinned them up against their try line, where they stayed for the remainder of the half. Dartmouth had several opportunities to finish, but impatience and solid Bear defense were enough to prevent a DWRC score. The half ended 0-10.

Brown kicked off in the second half, controlled possession in the opening minutes, but were pushed back to the fifty by aggressive Green defense before Dartmouth took over where they left off at half. Captain and wing Rachel "Squasher" Forman's outstanding tackling throughout the match gave Dartmouth re-possession opportunities, and #10 Val "Hamilton College Who?" Hanson took advantage of such opportunity with several cutting runs behind the Bear forwards. Center Monica Martin de Bustamante (MDB), #15 Cima , and Forman also made some outstanding runs, including a brilliant team effort which looked like a sure try at the 55 minute mark - booked-ended by long runs by MDB, it was thwarted by a knock-on in goal under intense pressure from Brown chasers. Dartmouth controlled possession through most of the half, though Bear #9 Ibarra made some great runs up the center off of messy rucks. Brown did manage to pin Dartmouth to their tryline twice in the second half, but MDB kicked the Big Green into better position and Forman made sure that the counter-attacker didn't go far. Dartmouth's second big break-away opportunity came on an off-loaded ball from second row Meghan "Eagle" McDavid to hooker Jamie Smart, who busted up the blindside for a thirty meter run to put the Green Machine in motion. The DWRC lost possession in an ensuing ruck, but great inside channel defense by Dartmouth's forwards allowed Eagle McDavid to once again clean up a messy ruck ball, this time taking it herself for a thirty meter run into the try zone.

Flanker and President Mallory "Chip-kick" McQueen had an excellent all-around match, and while all the forwards played a solid match, Juniors Smart and McDavid showed great tenacity, field sense, and speed. Rookie prop Kali Lemke also found her way around the pitch and made some key plays.
Points: Meghan McDavid 5

DWRC B's 0 vs. BROWN B's 45
Saturday, September 27, 2008

Dartmouth Second Fifteen Struggles Against Athletic Brown B's.

Last week's B-side match against UMASS was athletic enough, and the DWRC inexperienced enough, to make it a tough learning match. This week's B-side match was a step up from that, featuring a very strong Brown team, with fast wings and aggressive forwards. The DWRC had trouble with defensive re-alignment and tackling, making a somewhat easy day for the Brown Second Fifteen. After their first try at nine minutes into the match, Brown put up four more quick tries in succession, mostly from their outside three, as Dartmouth's inexperienced wings had difficulty with open-field tackling against some very speedy players. Half ended at 25-0.

On an positive note, the DWRC contained Brown more in the second half of the 60 minute match, making them work harder for the four tries they put on the board, and improving their play around the ruck. The DWRC forwards also saw marked improvement in the set pieces. Final Score- 45-0, but an invaluable experience as the DWRC's new players work hard on getting themselves ready to contribute to the depth of the first side.

DWRC 30 vs. UCONN 0
Saturday, October 25, 2008
NERFU Playoffs more like a "week off" for the DWRC, as depleted D1 Second Bracket offers little competition.

The DWRC dropped into the second bracket of the NERFU Playoffs after losing two very close matches during league play, making it impossible for the Big Green to compete for the NERFU Title, and making it inevitable that this coming week's first semi-final match in the NRU playoffs would be a long travel weekend. Dartmouth finished "5th" out of 10 in NERFU DI, but the margin that separated them from the top 4 teams was about as thin as it could get- a one-try loss to two of the top teams and a victory over another one of them in a non-conference contest.

This is, thankfully, the last year of this faulty DI structure in New England, where there are only four league matches and "playoffs" for the NERFU Title consist of two fifty minute matches in one day. Next year New England DI College Women will go to an eight-team league, with seven league matches and no playoffs. This structure allows every team in the league to play every other team, providing the most accurate ranking possible by the end of the season.

This last NERFU tournament took place on field-turf football fields at Berylson Complex at Brown University. The narrow width of the turf fields (53 yards, compared to 70 meters at Dartmouth's Brophy Field) and substantial wind dictated a north-south playing style for the Big Green. The match was punctuated by interior penetration and breakaways by Dartmouth's aggressive #12 Monica "Bull" Martin de Bustamante, who moved to fullback in the second half and had a beautiful try after hitting the line at pace on a fullback-fill between the centers at the 50 "yard" line and kicking it into high gear, leaving a trail of disappointed defenders in her wake. Winger Kristen Liu '11 had a hat trick on the day, as Dartmouth kept the offense tight between the 22's, but looked for the wide pass or the short side to finish off their scoring drives. Dartmouth controlled possession through most of the match, requiring the Big Green's back row, all of whom have played in the backline in past seasons, to once again spend much of their time in the open field. In the opening minutes of the match a nice offensive series, in which #6 Mallory McQueen '09, #8 Eagle McDavid '10, and #7 Annie Jones '11, each played into the defense and distributed the ball, ended with Fullback Caroline "E-Stim is My Friend" Cima '10 slipping into the try zone on the final off-load from Jones. #10 Val "Hands" Hanson added the second try of the match with a fake-take-and-dive attack at the try line from the back of a ruck. Dartmouth's forwards continued to improve their positioning around the pitch, and the entire team showed better discipline at the try line. Several Dartmouth substitutes entered the match in the second half, getting some valuable experience as they work to add depth to the first fifteen. Center Janel "NOT Lauren" diBaccari '10 took some big hits from a re-invigorated UCONN backline as the DWRC worked to improve timing and connections with the changed line up. diBaccari also made some great tackles on a big and aggressive UCONN #13. Hooker Lauren "NOT Janel" diBaccari '10 took over for Jamie Smart '10 up front, and Second Row Theresa Cassano '12 also stepped in for some first-team experience.

The second match of the day was supposed to be played against Providence College, who managed to get past Yale in the other first-game matchup of the second bracket. Providence College, down to just fifteen players, decided to forfeit their match, and essentially end their season early, as they also forfeited their NRU first round match this weekend instead of traveling as the #8 Seed to face #1 NRU Seed West Point.

The DWRC was somewhat disappointed to have such an easy week, though it did allow some players to rest nagging injuries, as well as to aid the entire team's ongoing recovery from bronchitis.

The final match of the NERFU Championship was a very well-played and exciting contest between two undefeated teams- Brown from the Silver Conference and Army from the Jade. Army had rolled over the teams in their Conference, and Brown had large point margins against every team but Dartmouth in their run for the Conference title. The teams were well-matched, but Army proved to be more organized defensively and had better ball distribution for the day, working their way into a 15-0 win. Brown had their opportunities, but Army's defensive composure and strength prevented the Bears from capitalizing when they needed to.

DWRC B's vs. UMass and Brown
Saturday, October 25, 2008
DWRC B-SIDE TAKES ON UMASS and BROWN in two SHORT MATCHES

The Second Fifteen took the pitch for two short re-matches of earlier games played during league season. Still struggling with organization around the tackle and the ruck, the Big Green had trouble stringing much offense together. Set pieces went well, but several key backs were missing and players filling in at unfamiliar positions added to the general disorganization. Sandy "She's Everywhere" Wong '10 played brilliantly for Dartmouth, showing the rookies how the game should be played as she makes her way back from injury to the first side. Dartmouth did not come out on top in either short scrimmage, but were happy to get the game experience despite a tight tournament schedule.