(File photo)

(File photo)

Girls rugby returns to Lacombe after two-year break

After a two-year break, the École Secondaire Lacombe Composite High School (ESLCHS) girls rugby team is back at it.

On April 20 the team had exhibition games against Stettler and Rimbey at MEGlobal Athletic Park. The team beat Stettler but fell short to Rimbey.

“Understandably they were quite nervous before our games on April 20 but after the first couple hits everyone was pedal to the metal,” said head coach Kessie Stefanyk. She said that regardless of the score both she and the team are just glad to be back on the field.

“They were great games. Rimbey always has a strong program and they had some skilled girls who could run the ball hard. Stettler is a young team just like us but they were getting on the ball quickly and running hard as well.”

Stefanyk said her team is also looking strong for the upcoming season.

“Kenya Richards is an incredible rugby player and brings a lot of speed and previous experience to our team and Nola Conrad had several very strong runs and great tackles, especially against Rimbey.”

She said Ayla Lowe also made a few key tackles that saved the team a couple of tries throughout the day.

“We have some very talented athletes who are brand new to the game of rugby and I am excited to see how they progress throughout the season. I know we will see plenty of growth this season and we will build a strong foundation for years to come.”

She said that the learning curve is steep for the team, but she’s been impressed with their ability to learn new skills and pick up the concepts.

“This is a fresh start for the whole team. Essentially everyone is new to the team this year. I have three or four players with previous experience, but the other 35 athletes are playing rugby for the first time this year.”

The next home game is April 27 at 5 p.m. at ME Global against Notre Dame.