The little team that could just keeps chugging along.
The Minnedosa Chancellors girls’ rugby team, which only has 16 players, didn’t have high expectations this season and they keep surprising themselves. The Chancellors won their first-ever Westman High School Rugby girls’ championship last week and now they’re a win away from a provincial title after topping the defending champion Kelvin Clippers 30-0 in yesterday’s provincial semifinals at John Reilly Field.
Alyssa Arvisais had a pair of tries for Minnedosa and credits the team’s solid defence for its success on Friday.
“We worked really well as a team,” said the 5-foot-8 Grade 12 student who plays eight-man. “We got up on our defence. We won a lot of rucks, we pushed harder and got everything out of us. We’re pretty tired at the end, but it worked out well in the end.”
Sydney Ingenmey also had a pair of tries for Minnedosa, while Mallory Workman and Robin Bell added singles.
The Chancellors will now take on the Sisler Spartans for a provincial banner today at noon. Sisler beat the Souris Sabres 31-5 in the other semifinal. Emma Boisvert scored the try for Souris.
Arvisais believes the Chancellors will have to continue to play well defensively if they want to add a provincial banner to their collection, and she’d love to end her high school career on top.
“It would be amazing,” she said. “I couldn’t imagine anything better right now, especially coming from the little team we have.”
The Sabres will play the Clippers for bronze at noon.
Meanwhile, there won’t be any Westman representation in the provincial boys’ high school rugby championship as both Minnedosa and Souris dropped their semifinals yesterday.
The Sabres had a chance to score and win their semifinal on the last play of regulation time, but failed and went on to lose 39-22 in overtime to the Sisler Spartans. Brendan Roberts had a pair of tries for Souris, which led 12-10 at the half, while Nathan Greig and Michael Fortin both added singles and Adam Kowalchuk booted a conversion.
In the other semifinal, Justin McKinnon had a try and convert for the Chancellors as they fell 32-7 to the St. Paul’s Crusaders.
The Sabres and Chancellors will meet in a rematch of the Westman league final in the provincial bronze-medal game today at 1:30 p.m., at John Reilly Field. St. Paul’s and Sisler will play for gold at the same time.