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Women’s Rugby takes home second place in Crimson 7s

Bruno fell to Harvard in finals, after defeating AIC, Sacred Heart, Quinnipiac

The Bears will next play in the Ivy 7s tournament on April 20.
Courtesy of Brown Athletics
The Bears will next play in the Ivy 7s tournament on April 20. Courtesy of Brown Athletics

In a weekend thriller, the women’s rugby team (13–7, 3–3 Ivy) traveled to Cambridge to compete in the Crimson 7s tournament, which features several teams from across New England. 

The Bears went undefeated in regular play, but even after two stellar tries by Lily Nowak ’27, the Bears fell 17–14 to Harvard, taking home second-place in the tournament. 

“We had a strong performance at Crimson 7s and showed a lot of growth tactically and technically,” Coach Rosalind Chou wrote in a message to The Herald. “But we still need to be able to have a complete defensive performance (and fewer) lapses in critical moments.” 

In their first match-up of the day, the Bears took on American International College. Brown’s fierce defensive pursuit placed the team within AIC’s 22-meter line just a minute into the game, where Akilah Cathey ’25 bulldozed two defenders for the first try of the day. A conversion by Julia Murray ’26 capped the score, and Brown took an early 7–0 lead. 


After a 70-meter equalizer by AIC, the Bears struck back with a vengeance. In a dominant offensive showing, the team marched down the field where Murray split two defenders for the try. With time running down in the first half, Kate Muldoon ’26 heightened her offensive strategy, bursting through the tryline after a fake pass sent her defender reeling. 

Heading into the half, Bruno led the game 21–5. 

Though AIC was able to score once in the second half, they never touched the Bruno lead. With thirty seconds left, Jordan Wiseman ’27 put the final nail in the coffin with a 60-meter charge into the tryzone, securing a 28–12 victory. 

In their second contest of the day , Bruno’s offense came out to a hot start against Sacred Heart. Mirroring her earlier performance, Cathey barreled through her defenders to claim the early lead. A minute later, the Bears poached the ball in Sacred Heart’s territory, and Lily Nowak ’27 scored to earn an early 12–0 advantage.

In the second half, an unyielding passing game helped Aziza Alford ’25 elude Sacred Heart’s defenders on their way into the tryzone. Capped off by a Muldoon try, the Bears took home a 22–14 victory. 

The semi-finals pitted Brown against Quinnipiac. After going down early, the Bears struck back with a comprehensive attack. With just under a minute to go in the half, the Bears intercepted a Quinnipiac throw-in, and Cathey scored to claim a 7–5 lead heading into halftime. 

When play resumed, Muldoon pounced, laying out to cross the plain, extending the advantage to 14–5. Piling on the point, Nowak — in a stunning display of strength and speed — corralled the ball behind the halfway line, outrunning the Bobcat defenders. In a declarative 19–12 victory, the Bears advanced to the finals. 

With only one team separating them from the Cup, the Bears came out swinging against Harvard. Nowak exploited a hole in the Crimson formation, piercing through the defensive line for the first try of the game. Converting the kick was Julia Murray, and Bruno took a 7–0 lead with 2:30 remaining in the first half. 

But Brown’s defense faltered, and after three consecutive Harvard tries, the Bears found themselves trailing 17–7. Refusing to give up, the offense rallied once more and Nowak scored for the second time that game. Ultimately, though, the late surge was not enough to overcome the ten-point deficit. The Bears narrowly lost the game 17–14. 

The Bears will next play in the Ivy 7s tournament on April 20, where they hope to “build and improve on (their) performance from last year,” Chou wrote


“This group is an absolute joy to coach because they have such a passion for learning, paired with work ethic and competitiveness,” Chou added. “We keep surpassing expectations and our potential is limitless.”

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Lydell Dyer

Lydell Dyer is a Senior Staff Writer for the sports section. A sophomore hailing from Bonn, Germany, Lydell is studying nonfiction English and political science, and if he's not off "making words sound pretty," you can find him lifting heavy circles at the Nelson.

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