CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Dartmouth women’s rugby team used a pair of second-half tries and a stingy defense to capture its second straight Ivy Rugby title Sunday afternoon.
The top-seeded Big Green scored two quick tries midway through the final stanza to defeat Harvard, 14-5, at the Crimson’s Mignone Field and secure their second conference title in as many years since moving to varsity status.
For the second straight year, Dartmouth was held scoreless in the first half of the title game as Harvard notched the lone points of the frame with a try as time wound down.
Much like last year’s 19-12 championship win against Brown in Hanover, the Green and White responded with timely scoring and a defense that shutdown the opposition in the second half.
This year, it was the Crimson who were unable to put points on the board in the second frame, stifled by a collective effort on defense. And while limiting the points at one end of the field, Dartmouth was able to touch down at the other.
The first points came via a penalty try as Isabel Boettcher was running for the corner, but was pulled down by a high tackle in the 65th minute. The referee and side judge discussed and awarded the Big Green the five points. Sophomore Kat Ramage followed with a successful conversion and Dartmouth’s first lead of the game, 7-5.
Ramage played a key role in the next score as she came away from a ruck in the 70th minute and found junior Frankie Sands five yards back and to her right. Sands put together and incredible individual effort, bullying her way through several Crimson players en route to a 20-yard run and the team’s second try of the afternoon.
Ramage’s second conversion of the contest was key as it put the visitors up nine, making it a two-score game with under 10 minutes to play.
A final stop near the tryline for the visitors and the sound of the referee’s whistle three minutes into extra time sent the Dartmouth bench running onto the field as the Green were once again champions of Ivy Rugby.
Harvard’s two losses this season have come at the hands of the team from Hanover, dropping a game at Brophy field, 22-19, on Oct. 1 before Sunday’s nine-point defeat. The Crimson had come into Sunday’s game with consecutive shutouts and just five points allowed since the last meeting between these two teams, only to see Dartmouth solve the tough Harvard defense when it needed to most.
Check back with DartmouthSports.com this week for information regarding the location and opponent for the Big Green in the upcoming national varsity postseason tournament.