On Friday, Feb. 8, the Islander Girls’ Club Rugby team played three tough matches away at Mira Mesa High School. For the first match of the night, Coronado played Poway High School, who started off the match with a “cheeky play kicking a line drive at Shire Lampkin, one of Coronado’s strong forward players,” says Coach Santos Trujillo. This play resulted in a knock-on penalty, giving Poway the ball in the successive scrum. At the scrum, Coronado’s forwards pushed back their opponents, allowing co-team captain Nessa Hudson to steal the ball. Hudson then passed the ball to Oloa Ta’a, who ran outside before she was caught by a defender. Anissa Celiceo received the ball from Ta’a, and she outran the rest of Poway’s defenders to score the first try of the night. The rest of match proceeded similarly, giving Coronado a 24-5 victory.
The following match was played against Cathedral Catholic High School, “who had players with both speed and size advantages,” comments Coach Trujillo. However, these advantages were countered by the Islanders’ crushing defense, preventing them scoring a single try. With two tries by co-team captain Kate Buzby, one by Ta’a, and another by Julia Butzirus, Coronado took their second win of the night, 24-0.
The Islanders headed into their final match of the night against Mira Mesa High School, who was playing on their home pitch and had also been undefeated the entire season. As they knew Buzby was a dominating player, Mira Mesa did not let her come close to the try line, tackling her every time she touched the ball. This gave the rest of Coronado’s forwards opportunities to score. As the sidelines were completely open, Butzirus took the ball down the field and fended off two of Mira Mesa’s defenders to score a try. Ta’a would make two more tries, while Hudson matched each one with conversions. This gave Coronado a 19-0 lead at the half. Their opponents scored once in the finals minutes of the game, but lost their winning streak to Coronado, 19-7.
Now heading into the post-season, the Lady Islanders will play for their second division title in the last three years at the Silverlakes Sports Complex.