Annette Hacker, director,
Office: (515) 294-4777
Mary Conroy, ISU Women's Rugby Club, (402) 432-1580, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dan Kuester, News Service, (515) 294-0704, email@example.com
Iowa State's Women's Rugby Club wins national championship
AMES, Iowa -- Three scores by Iowa State's Ashley Cleveland helped lead the Cyclones to the Division II Women's Rugby National Championship, beating top-ranked and defending champion UC Santa Cruz 26-19 Saturday in Stanford, Calif.
The Cyclones got out to a 12-0 lead early in the match as Cleveland scored two early tries. The second try was the result of pass from teammate Amanda Rolling.
Captain Julie Freese hoists the championship trophy after beating UC Santa Cruz for the national title. Courtesy photo
In rugby, tries are like touchdowns and are worth five points. Successful conversion kicks are worth two points.
After a Santa Cruz score made the tally 12-5, Cleveland again crossed the line for the Cyclones resulting in a 19-5 lead.
Santa Cruz then scored to climb within 19-12 before Rolling got a try of her own, making the score 26-12. Santa Cruz got one more try late in the match, but the Cyclones were too strong.
"We knew we could win and everything fell into place for us," said Mary Conroy, a junior from Lincoln, Neb., majoring in biology and psychology.
Conroy said UCSC was a team that relies on power and strength, while Iowa State is a finesse team that likes to get the ball into the hands of its fastest players.
"We were a little worried about how we matched up," she said. "But we're very excited now about the win."
The ISU Women's Rugby Club beat top-ranked UC Santa Cruz to win the Division II Women's Rugby National Championship.