Bryan Kelly, Rugby Canada
Canada’s senior women’s team ran in seven tries in a convincing 48-7 win over Ireland in the opening game of their November tour. Canada got tries from Julianne Zussman (2), DaLeaka Menin, Karen Paquin, Emily Belchos, Laura Russell and Magali Harvey while Andrea Burk kicked 13 points.
“We are pleased to win against Ireland,” head coach Francois Ratier said. “There is still some room for improvement but I think we were able to maintain the continuity with our forwards and make sure that when we passed to the backs we had a clear option to score.”
It was clinical display from Canada against the No. 5 ranked team in the world highlighted by a dominant first half display where Canada took a 24-0 lead into the break.
Menin got things started in the seventh minute, crashing over sustained pressure from the visitors. After Burk’s penalty pushed the lead to 10-0, Zussman grabbed her first try of the day as she exchanged passes with winger Elissa Alarie before touching down for a 17-0 lead.
Paquin grabbed a third Canadian try just before the half time whistle as she powered over from the back of a ruck.
“The score does not reflect how tough it was,” Latoya Blackwood said. “I think we performed well. We had a week to prepare and that really helped.”
Ireland responded well to start the second half as Nikki Caughey scored and converted her own try to cut Canada’s lead to 24-7 in the 47th minute. However, it was all Canada from there on out though as Belchos, Russell, Harvey and Zussman all touched down in the final 25 minutes to maintain Canada’s unbeaten 2016 record.
Canada returns to action on Wednesday against No. 1 ranked New Zealand. The game can be seen LIVE by clicking here. Kickoff is 9:30am ET/6:30am PT.
Canada’s Roster vs. Ireland:
- Carolyn McEwen (Burnaby Lake Rugby Club), Vancouver, BC
- Laura Russell (Toronto Nomads) Bolton, ON
- DaLeaka Menin (Calgary Hornets) Vulcan, AB
- Latoya Blackwood (Westshore) Montreal, QC
- Kayla Mack (Wild Oats) Saskatoon, SK
- Jacey Grusnick (Aurora Barbarians) Alliston, ON
- Karen Paquin (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, QC
- Kelly Russell, Captain(Toronto Nomads) Bolton, ON
- Chelsea Guthrie (Stratchona Druids) Edmonton, AB
- Emily Belchos (Westshore) Barrie, ON
- Magali Harvey (Club de Rugby Quebec) Quebec City, QC
- Andrea Burk (Capilano RFC) North Vancouver, BC
- Alex Tessier (Montreal Barbarians) Sainte-Clotilde-de-Horton, QC
- Elissa Alarie (Westshore) Trois-Rivieres, QC
- Julianne Zussman (Castaway Wanderers) Montreal, QC
- Gillian Boag (Capilano/UBC) Calgary, AB
- Olivia DeMerchant (Woodstock Wildmen) Mapledale, NB
- Demi Stamatakis (SFU) Vancouver, BC
- Tyson Beukeboom (Aurora Barbarians) Uxbridge, ON
- Barbara Mervin (Westshore) Peterborough, ON
- Brianna Miller (SABRFC), Pointe-Claire, QC
- Mackenzie Higgs (Aurora Barbarians) Aurora, ON
- Brittany Waters (Meralomas/Castaway Wanderers) Vancouver, BC
Unavailable due to injury:
Daria Keane (Guelph Redcoats) Sarnia, ON
Mandy Marchak (Capilano) Winnipeg, MB
Cindy Nelles (Oakville Crusaders / Belleville Bulldogs) Belleville, ON
Kristy Sargent (Lep Tigers) Edmonton, AB
Amanda Thornborough (Westshore) Brandon, MB
Canada’s Senior Women’s Schedule:
Canada 48 – 7 Ireland — Nov. 19 — UCD Bowl, Ireland
Canada vs. New Zealand — Nov. 23 — Donnybrook Stadium, Ireland
Canada vs. England — Nov. 26 — Twickenham, England
About Rugby Canada
Rugby Canada is the national governing body of the sport of rugby union in Canada. Rugby Football has a long history in Canada dating back to its initial appearance in the 1860s. Since 1974, Rugby Canada has been a permanent fixture on the global rugby scene, including trips to each of the eight Men’s Rugby World Cups and seven Women’s Rugby World Cups. As a regular on the Men’s and Women’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, Canada continues to climb the world rankings and challenge the dominant rugby nations in both versions of the game. Canada’s Women’s Rugby Sevens Team also made history in 2016, capturing the first-ever Bronze Medal at the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
To support the growth of rugby at the grass-roots level and to ensure there are elite programs for prospering young rugby players to become involved with, Rugby Canada has put an emphasis on developing its junior programs. Our goal is to develop and train competitive teams for the 2017 Women’s Rugby World Cup in Ireland, the 2018 Sevens World Cup in San Francisco, the 2019 Men’s Rugby World Cup in Japan and 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.