GRR on X  GRR on Facebook GRR in Instagram GRR Vimeo Library GRR on YouTube RuggaMatrix America Podcasts Support GRR on Patreon

Lindenwood Holds Off Tenacious CWU in D1 Elite

irish rugby tours

Lindenwood Holds Off Tenacious CWU in D1 Elite

Central Washington unleashed a solid defense against a high-powered Lindenwood attack.

Lindenwood beat Central Washington and BYU beat Grand Canyon in the latest action in D1 Elite Women.

With the win, Lindenwood joins CWU and Life with two wins, but Lindenwood has no losses and has defeated both of those other two-win teams. BYU improved to 1-1.

It was a solid showing by Central despite the loss. "What a match," CWU Head Coach Matt Ramirez said.  "The response our team had, in the fifth week of being assembled, against a team like that was exactly what we asked of them. We've been working to build a strong bench, and to see the work of our finishers today gave everyone the right picture. To battle back in the second half was great."

Several Wildcats stood up well and came back from a 15-0 deficit with two tries from Jessica Postle and a conversion from Kai Brandt-Templeton to make it 15-12. That score held for a while thanks in large part to a tenacious defensive effort from Central Washington, led by flanker Tessa Hann.

But Lindenwood responded well to run in two tries to seal the game—Madison Jersey broke free out wide for her second breakaway try of the day. As time wound down, Amy Brice scored her second of the day, capping off a long period of phases. Tanaka Kanyepi also scored for Lindenwood.

This was still a good performance for CWU as Lindenwood ran out a top-flight starting 15.

"We had a strong side out, which speaks volumes for CWU and how tough they are this season," said Lindenwood Head Coach Trevor Locke. "They came out and physically matched us for the full 80 and even though we enjoyed a majority of possession, they made it tough for us to transfer into points. I was proud of our effort throughout, especially on defense though. When the game was tight around the 65th minute, the team dug in and embraced the contest which says a lot about them as players." 

One big question-mark hangs with Lindenwood and that is their goalkicking. In their last three victories, against top teams Dartmouth, Life, and Central Washington, the Lions have scored 16 tries and converted ... one. So one could argue that they are a little bit better than the scores indicate because if they get even a 50% conversion rate their average winning margin improves from about 18 per game to 23. Locke acknowledged the conversion rate, but isn't overly concerned.

"The goalkicking has been spotty for sure, no excuses," said Locke (not addressing the perfectly acceptable excuse that the weather in the Dartmouth game made kicking very difficult). "However, our goalkickers have been working hard and we are looking to see improvement each week."

There is much more to come in D1 Elite. Life visits Grand Canyon and Lindenwood travels to BYU. The Cougars then leave Utah to play at Life a week later, while Penn State plays Lindenwood.

Those games will wrap up the all-D1-Elite games for the fall, but there is a full schedule in February and March, culminating in the semifinals March 30 and the final May 4.

D1 Elite W L T PF PA PD BT BL Pts
Lindenwood 2 0 0 52 12 40 2 0 10
Life 2 1 0 112 45 67 2 0 10
Central Washington 2 2 0 118 88 30 2 0 10
BYU 1 1 0 72 22 50 1 0 5
Penn State 0 1 0 13 71 -58 0 0 0
Grand Canyon 0 2 0 0 139 -139 0 0 0