Ireland Tops USA Women
GUILDFORD, UK – The United States women couldn’t overcome a spirited Irish side in their second match of the Women’s Rugby World Cup. With a final score of 12-22, the USA are now in a difficult position as far as pool play is concerned as they approach their match against England on Saturday.
Confidence was high going in to the match against Ireland as the USA was coming off a 51-0 victory over Kazakhstan. However, as head coach Kathy Flores predicted, the Irish defense was tenacious and a number of missed opportunities led to an unfavorable result.
Ireland number eight, Joy Neville, celebrated earning her 50th international cap by scoring early in the match, while Niamh Briggs missed the conversion as the Women Eagles found themselves down by five points. Prop Jamie Burke, amongst a mass of USA forwards, would drive over the try line and Mel Kanuk would tack-on another two points with a successful conversion. The Irish fullback, Briggs, would atone for her missed conversion earlier in the match with ball in-hand as she scored in the 35th minute. Her kick would sail wide as the score held at 7-10 in favor of Ireland going in to the half.
“At the half we stressed the importance of capitalizing on our opportunities. We were struggling to retain possession and the penalty count was becoming a major factor,” said head coach, Kathy Flores.
Five minutes in to the second half, Neville would score her second try of the match with Briggs failing to convert. Several changes in possession tempered by a flurry of handling errors went on throughout the match. The Irish scored their final try, courtesy of scrumhalf Tania Rosser, on a quick penalty and Briggs’ conversion found the mark. With an Irish victory on the horizon, USA refused to back down as winger Vanesha McGee scored in the 73rd minute. The late offensive burst by the USA would not be enough to overcome the point deficit as Mel Kanuk’s conversion missed. The score was 12-22 and would remain unchanged until the final whistle.
“You have to give credit to Ireland for playing a solid, all-around game; now we have to do our best to look forward to the next match,” said head coach, Kathy Flores.
“We made a lot of mistakes, especially with our handling, and Ireland was able to take advantage. We had some opportunities to score, but we just couldn’t put enough points on the board. Preparation for England has new meaning starting tomorrow,” said captain Ashley English.
The Eagles face tournament hosts England on Saturday and will be broadcast at 10 p.m. EST on Universal Sports. For listings in your local area, visit the Universal Sports website, or follow this link: http://www.universalsports.com/tv-listings/Universal_Sports_on_TV.html.
Final - USA 12, Ireland 22
- Farrah Douglas - Keystone
- Maurin Wallace- Beantown
- Jamie Burke– Beantown (Replaced by Reddick, 50’)
- Stacey Bridges– Texas A&M
- Beckett Royce – ORSU Rugby Club (Replaced by Blaney, 46’)
- Melanie Denham – Beantown (Replaced by Knight, 64’)
- Kittery Wagner - Beantown
- Blair Groefsema– Berkeley All-Blues
- Claudia Braymer – Albany Sirens
- Christy Ringgenberg – Minnesota Valkyries
- Victoria Folayan– Berkeley All-Blues (Replaced by Marchino, 54’)
- Melissa Kanuk – Minnesota Valkyries
- Lynelle Kugler – Twin Cities Amazons
- Vanesha McGee – New York
- Ashley English – Berkeley All-Blues
- Lisa Butts – Berkeley All-Blues
- Naima Reddick – Berkeley All-Blues (Replaced Burke, 50’)
- Sharon Blaney – Beantown (Replaced Royce, 46’)
- Phaidra Knight – New York (Replaced Denham, 64’)
- Kim Magrini - Keystone
- Amy Daniels - Beantown
- Nathalie Marchino – Berkeley All-Blues (Replaced Folayan, 54’)
Tries: Jamie Burke (17’ ), Vanesha McGee (73’) Conversions: Mel Kanuk (18’)
1. Fiona Coghlan (Captain)
2. Gillian Bourke
3. Louise Austin (Replaced by Fanning, 64’)
4. Kate O’Loughlin
5. Marie Louise Reilly (Replaced by Mahon, 64’)
6. Orla Brennan (Replaced by Ryan, 71’)
7. Claire Molloy
8. Joy Neville
9. Tania Rosser (Replaced by Beamish, 74’)
10. Helen Brosnan (Replaced by Houston, 68’)
11. Nora Stapleton
12. Lynne Cantwell
13. Jo O’Sullivan
14. Amy Davis (Replaced by Kelly, 64’)
15. Niamh Briggs
16. Chris Fanning (Replaced Austin 64’)
17. Laura Guest
18. Caroline Mahon (Replaced Reilly, 64’)
19. Sinead Ryan (Replaced Brennan, 71’)
20. Louise Beamish (Replaced Rosser, 74’)
21. Shannon Houston (Replaced Brosnan, 68’)
22. Mairead Kelly (Replaced Davis, 64’)
Tries: Joy Neville (6’), Niamh Briggs (35’), Joy Neville (45’), Tania Rosser (53’) Conversions: Niamh Briggs (54’)
Women’s National Team Website: http://www.wewantrugby.com To learn more about the team, peruse WNT videos and pictures, buy WNT merchandise, interact with players, and donate visit their website. Get a limited edition USA WRWC 2010 stainless steel water bottle by visiting: http://www.wewantrugby.com/shop.html