Haliburton Red Hawks jubilant, edging out Adam Scott in home opener
By Darren Lum
Published Oct. 9, 2018
In contrast to the light rain and the grey, overcast sky, the Red Hawks varsity rugby players beamed with great smiles, radiating with emotion. They laughed and embraced one another, jumping up and down after the 17-12 win on Tuesday, Oct. 2 at the Gary G. Brohman Athletic Field in Haliburton against the visiting Lions of Adam Scott.
Coach Alexis David was excited and couldn’t have been prouder of the girls, which as a group (with the exception of two seniors) haven’t won any games before.
“I think it gave them confidence. Moving forward it will motivate them to stay confident and know they can do it. I think a lot of times they hesitate. It’s a new game. It’s an aggressive game and so they hesitate not knowing if they’re doing things right and I think today gave them that confidence and reassured them that they’re doing things right. Their dedication to the sport is paying off,” she said.
Against the Lions the Hawks had led for much of the game, carrying a 17-0 lead into the half.
Tries were scored by Chloe Samson, Charlotte Paton and Senna Marra. A convert was kicked successfully by Kailynn Sikma.
Although Lions scored a pair of tries late in the game, the Hawks hung on for the 17-12 win.
David said the team gave up the late tries because of fatigue, but rallied in the end.
“We started running out of gas. The girls realized they were running out of gas and they brought it back together for those last five minutes ... missing a few key tackles, but it didn’t ruin them. They came back and they still realized they were running out of gas and they needed to [get] together and motivate each other to finish those last couple minutes strong,” she said.
Hard work for the team has definitely paid off, she said.
Since the first day of school, the team has held close to seven practices a week, five at 7 a.m. and/or after school and this doesn’t even include the informal workouts in the summer.
Team unity is a major component to this team’s cohesiveness.
Before the Lions game the team held a pasta dinner at a member’s home, which included group activities to foster team unity. This past Wednesday the team also came together for a team after school run to honour Terry Fox since many on the roster couldn’t run during the school event due to organizing.
The team’s coaching staff includes co-coach Carson MacDonald, who has been with the team for several years, and assistant Brianne Pockett.
David said after this win she is confident in her pre-season prediction this team will finish the regular season in the top four.
“These girls have all the potential to make it to the top four based on how they played today. They were hitting hard and hitting well – they were hitting low. There weren’t a lot of high tackles and I think if they come out on the field their next couple of games the way they did today they have a really good shot at coming making that top four playoffs,” she said.