GREELEY, Colo. – Women’s Eagles Head Coach Pete Steinberg has named the starting roster for his side’s match against England at the 2013 IRB Women’s Nations Cup at the University of Northern Colorado. The match will be live-streamed on USA Rugby TV Wednesday at 6:00 P.M. MT.
Jillion Potter, who started the previous two games at the number eight position, will her starting spot and will captain the Eagles. Potter is among five Women’s Eagles Sevens players who have come into the squad following the bronze medal performance at the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens.
“Jillion is a great addition to the team,” Steinberg said. “She is a great athlete who is a very physical player and has shown the ability to create line breaks on the attack. She is also a very calm presence and a natural leader.”
After coming off of the bench to score two vital tries in Sunday’s win against Canada, Sarah Chobot will start at loose-head prop. Ashley Kmiecik will partner Nathalie Marchino on the wing and Christy Ringgenberg will serve as vice-captain from the fullback position.
Along with the youth on the bench, like AIG Women’s Junior All-Americans Meya Bizer and Anne Peterson, Jamie Burke will wear the number 16 shirt in what could be her 41st Eagles cap. Burke tied longtime Eagle Patty Jervey Sunday for most caps.
“We want to win the game against England,” Steinberg said. “We have some players who are banged up after a physical Canada game, but generally we have selected the best side available based on play.”
Despite taking the lead with three minutes remaining in the opening match against Canada, England succumbed to a late defeat and only defeated South Africa Sunday by one point. After a busy month, England brought a relatively young squad to Colorado for Nations Cup, including a number of sevens players.
“We expect England to be our toughest match of the week,” Steinberg said. “All of the teams have improved this week, and an inexperienced England side will gain a lot from their two games so far. They have never given up so we need to play to the end.”
Originally scheduled for Saturday night, the Day Two Nations Cup matches were pushed to midday Sunday due to inclement weather, giving teams even less rest between games two and three than the planned 92 hours. Steinberg credits the coaching staff for keeping the Eagles fresh during the tournament, something they will have to keep in mind as they prepare for the 2014 Women’s Rugby World Cup.
“We have done a lot of work on the metal and physical side of our preparation,” he said. “John Coumbe-Lilley has done a great job of helping players get into the right mindset for performance. Overall we were too anxious as a team before the South Africa game, but worked to be better prepared mentally for the game against Canada. Paul Cater, the strength and conditioning coach, has brought a new approach to both our recovery and preparation. We now use the weight room as a key recovery activity and also part of our pre-game routine.”
Canada and South Africa will play in the first match Wednesday at 4:00 P.M. MT. Watch the Nations Cup live on USA Rugby TV and follow along with tweets from @USARugby. Check out the 2013 Women’s Nations Cup Information Center for all of the tournament information.
Women's Eagles | vs. England
1. Sarah Chobot
2. Kittery Wagner
3. Hope Rogers
4. Stacey Bridges
5. Molly Kinsella
6. Kristin Zdanczewicz
7. Lynelle Kugler
8. Jillion Potter (C)
9. Jocelyn Tseng
10. Kimber Rozier
11. Ashley Kmiecik
12. Anne Peterson
13. Emilie Bydwell
14. Nathalie Marchino
15. Christy Ringgenberg
In anticipation of the third and final round of pool matches to be played August 7, 2013, please see the current standings below.
Points are awarded as follows:
Win = 4 pts
Tie = 2 pts
Loss = 0 pts
Bonus points are awarded as follows:
Score 4 or more tries = 1pt;
Lose by less than 7 points = 1pt.
Nations Cup Standings