By Braedan Willis, Vikes Communications

It took until the final game, on the final day in the final tournament of the Canada West 7s season for the University of Victoria Vikes women’s rugby team to win their second consecutive Canada West championship.

Victoria and UBC headed into the final match on Day 2 of the Canada West Vancouver 7s tournament knowing the winner of the game took home the banner. It turned out to be third-year Vike and former Thunderbird Brooke Bazian who drove the dagger into the heart of T-birds as she scored the game-winning try to give the Vikes a 12-5 victory over UBC at Thunderbird Stadium.

“We knew it was going to be tough to defend the title this year,” said Vikes head coach Brittany Waters whose team won 18 games in a row to claim the conference title in 2018. “The other teams in the competition are getting better and gave us some really tough games this year. It feels great to be able to bring home another championship to UVic.”

After taking out the Lethbridge Pronghorns 26-19 with a last-second try despite trailing by 19 at halftime, and overpowering the Alberta Pandas 36-7 in their second contest, the Vikes set up a winner-take-all showdown with the host UBC Thunderbirds, who had gone undefeated until that point, in the tournament’s final match.

“Both UBC and us have been strong throughout this entire series,” added Waters. ” I don’t think we played our best rugby this weekend but we continued to build after each game and still picked up the wins we needed to set up what we knew would be a difficult game to finish off the tournament.”

Tied 5-5 in what was a physical final contest between the Vikes and T-birds, it was a darting run down the right flank by Bazian that proved to be the difference for Victoria. Bazian’s try and successful ensuing conversion put the Vikes out front 12-5 with two minutes remaining.

It capped off an impressive performance by Bazian, who led the Vikes with four tries on the day.

The day’s final contest put a damper on what was otherwise an excellent tournament for the host Thunderbirds, as they showed the ability to win close games in a 7-5 opener over the previously undefeated Calgary Dinos before shutting out the Fraser Valley Cascades 29-0.

Calgary, the only team to beat Victoria in Vancouver this weekend, placed third in the final tournament of the season with a record of 4-1-1, and fourth in the overall standings with 26 points.

The Lethbridge Pronghorns went 3-2-1 in Vancouver and placed third overall with 30 points.

Alberta placed fifth for the third tournament in a row – and was fifth in the overall standings with 18 points.

Fraser Valley earned sixth spot in both the Vancouver leg and in the overall series (12 points).

UBC Okanagan rounded out the field this weekend in sixth. The Heat also placed sixth for the season with four points.

Game 1: Calgary Dinos 22, Victoria Vikes 12
Scoring summary:
CGY: 10-12: 22
UVIC: 5-7: 12

  • UVIC try – #1 Gurpreet Dhaliwal (convert missed) – 5-0
  • CGY try – #9 Taejah Thompson (convert missed) – 5-5
  • CGY try – #21 Berlyn Seselja (convert missed) – 10-5
    • HALF
  • UVIC try – #2 Renee Gonzales (#6 Emily Belchos convert) – 12-10
  • CGY try – #12 Emma Newton (#21 Berlyn Seselja convert) – 17-12
  • CGY try – #9 Taejah Thompson convert missed) – 22-12

Game 2: Victoria Vikes 31, Fraser Valley Cascades 15
Scoring summary:
UVIC: 5-26: 31
UFV: 15-0: 15

  • UFV try – #11 Melissa Jongedijk (convert missed) – 5-0
  • UVIC try – #13 Jordyn Myers (convert missed) – 5-5
  • UFV try – #1 Jaylene Soegard (convert missed) – 10-5
  • UFV try – #11 Melissa Jongedijk (convert missed) – 15-5
    • HALF
  • UVIC try – #12 Madison Aberg (#4 Brooke Bazian convert) – 15-12
  • UVIC try – #12 Madison Aberg (convert missed) – 17-15
  • UVIC try – #14 McKenzie Pusch (#6 Emily Belchos convert) – 24-15
  • UVIC try – #5 Ashah Payson (#6 Emily Belchos convert) – 31-15

Game 3: Victoria Vikes 41, UBC Okanagan Heat 7
Scoring summary:
UVIC: 12-29: 41
UBCO: 7-0: 7

Game 4: Victoria Vikes 26, Lethbridge Pronghorns 19
Scoring summary:
VIC: 0-26: 26
LET: 19-0: 19

  • LET try – #2 Carolyn McKee (#5 Caitlin Sears convert) – 7-0
  • LET try – #3 Sara Cline (convert missed) – 12-0
  • LET try – #2 Carolyn McKee (#5 Caitlin Sears convert) – 19-0
    • HALF
  • VIC try – #1 Gurpreet Dhaliwal (#4 Brooke Bazian convert) – 19-7
  • VIC try – #6 Emily Belchos (#6 Emily Belchos convert) – 19-14
  • VIC try – #14 McKenzie Pusch (convert missed) – 19-19
  • VIC try – #12 Madison Aberg (#6 Emily Belchos convert) – 26-19

Game 5: Victoria Vikes 36, Alberta Pandas 7
Scoring summary:
VIC: 19-17: 36
ALB: 7-0: 0

Game 21: Victoria Vikes 12, UBC Thunderbirds 5
Scoring summary:
VIC: 5-7: 12
UBC: 5-0: 5

Tournament standings – FINAL 
TEAM   WINS   LOSSES TIES      POINTS
VIC       5          1          0          21
UBC      5         1          0          21
CGY      4         1          1          19
LET       3          2          1          16
ALB      2         4          0          12
UFV      1         5          0          9
UBCO   0         6          0          6

NOTE: Teams are awarded four points for a win, two points for a draw, and one point for a loss.

Overall series standings
Team / Tourney 1 pts / Tourney 2 pts / Tourney 3 pts / Total pts

VIC – 10 / 15 / 15 / 40 pts
UBC – 15 / 12 / 12 / 39 pts
LET – 12 / 10 / 8 / 30 pts
CGY – 8 / 8 / 10 / 26 pts
ALB – 6 / 6 / 6 / 18 pts
UFV – 4 / 4 / 4 / 12 pts
UBCO – NA / 2 / 2 / 4 pts
REG – 2 / NA / NA / 2 pts
TRU – 1 / NA / NA / 1 pt

About the Canada West Women’s Rugby Sevens Series
2019 marks the third season of the Canada West Women’s Rugby Sevens Series, which has been made possible thanks to Canada West’s partnership with B2ten and Rugby Canada.
Through their joint support, B2ten and Rugby Canada are committed to helping Canadian female athletes pursue their athletic careers, including an opportunity to progress to the national team.
The Canada West Women’s Rugby Sevens Series champion will be crowned March 3 at the University of British Columbia, as determined by cumulative series points.
2019 Canada West Women’s Rugby Sevens Series tournament dates: University of Alberta (Jan. 19/20), University of the Fraser Valley (Feb. 2/3) and the University of British Columbia (March 2/3).