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Aspetuck Girls on Hot Streak as Gonzaga Classic Looms

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Aspetuck Girls on Hot Streak as Gonzaga Classic Looms

Even shorthanded during spring break Aspetuck was finding success.

The Gonzaga Rugby Classic girls bracket is going to be a wild one with several highly-regarded teams in action.

Among those leading the way, Aspetuck has been enjoying an excellent season so far. They came away from the Southern Showcase with wins over West Carrol, Downingtown, and Wando in Elite Girls Rugby League action. In those games Aspetuck allowed just one try.

They followed that up with a 28-5 victory over Vienna. No. 8 Jennie Weiner, scrumhalf Molly Kennedy, and prop Gia Kloter led the way for Aspetuck.

After that they went back to Connecticut and opened that season with a massive win over Trumbull. Along with Weiner, Kloter, and Kennedy, the backs shone with midfields Jayden Smith (also the team captain), and Cara Doherty hugely influential.

And they followed that up with a win over Play Rugby USA and then Greenwich, beating the Cardinals 54-7. 

This past weekend, Aspetuck turned their attention to Morris, a fellow EGRL opponent. This was perhaps their toughest game of the year so far—Aspetuck 22 Morris 12.

Aspetuck has benefited from not having large groups of players graduating out of the program. The experience of this team, along with the addition of Kennedy, whose skill and goalkicking acumen have helped much, has put them in an excellent position to show well at this coming weekend’s Gonzaga Tournament.

Kennedy moved to Aspetuck from Play Rugby and she also has changed positions from flyhalf to scrumhalf. Among the players who have contributed, Weiner’s experience with EIRA has helped elevate her game and she is now a U18 prospect. Kloter and Doherty both benefited from traveling on tour with EIRA.


That close game with Morris was a welcome challenge, especially with the Connecticut team only taking 17 due to spring break absences.

“Morris is always a well-coached and well-drilled team,” said Aspetuck Coach John O’Neill. “They have been on the national stage for a lot longer than us. Coach Bill Dobbs and Mike Eisenhart definitely had them prepared.  Both teams played really great defense. Both teams tried really hard to get the other out of structure, and Morris definitely did well at that. We were able to get a few long possessions together a few times to get our scores.” 

All four of their tries took a lot of work to score, with Aspetuck battling through multiple phases. 

“For us Jennie Weiner was a warrior,” said O’Neill. “She's become excellent at setting up her teammates in phase play. Molly Kennedy at 9 also was really good at controlling the pace. Morris really loaded up their backline and put a lot of pressure on us. They played really great defense, but we were able to get those few long possessions to make the difference.”

Aspetuck will be in Pool C with the very handy Raleigh Cobras and Belmont HS, which won the Massachusetts IAA title last year.