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Match against Dartmouth ends with rare defeat for women's rugby

Bears’ offense runs dry, resulting in team’s first regular season loss since earning varsity status

The women’s rugby team suffered its first loss of the season Saturday, marking its first regular season defeat since the team gained varsity status before the 2014 season. The Bears (3-1, 2-1 Ivy) put up a fight against hosts Dartmouth, but the Big Green (2-1, 2-0), in its first varsity season, proved too much for Bruno, winning 8-5.

Brown struggled offensively through most of the match, converting only one try that came from Uzoamaka Okoro ’16 in the 71st minute. Dartmouth controlled possession for the majority of the game, limiting the offensive opportunities for the Bears.

“Dartmouth did a great job — credit to them,” said co-captain Oksana Goretaya ’17. Both Goretaya and fellow co-captain Tiara Mack ’16 were pleased with the Bears’ defensive efforts in limiting the Big Green to only eight points, but they recognized that the disparity in offensive possessions was too much to overcome.

“When we needed to, we played good defense, but we played defense for a little bit too long,” Goretaya said.

“It was almost 80 minutes of nonstop defense,” Mack added.

The Bears held the score close through repeated defensive stands at their try line. Dartmouth failed to convert multiple times in the face of the Brown defense, only breaking through for one second-half try and a penalty kick.

Responding from the loss will be a new task for the Bears, who handled their Ivy opponents with ease last year en route to an undefeated regular season. But Mack stressed the importance of using the defeat as an opportunity to learn.

“We knew that it was going to be hard to repeat an undefeated season,” she said. “As a team, we need to make sure that we take this as a learning experience rather than something that will ruin the rest of our season.”

Bruno’s attention will now turn to its next game: Saturday against Quinnipiac, the team that ended the Bears’ perfect season in the ACRA Regionals tournament last season. Both Mack and Goretaya, who suffered a torn ACL in the Quinnipiac game in 2014, recognized the chance for revenge against the Bobcats.

“It’s more of a pride thing,” Goretaya said. “I want to prove to Quinnipiac that if there wasn’t such a turn of events that we could have won that game.”

The Bears will host the Bobcats Saturday, Oct. 10 at 11 a.m. at Marvel Field.



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