mens rugby
The Gees started the game off slower than usual, but were able to bounce back in the second half, securing their place in the playoffs. Photo: Hailey Otten/Fulcrum
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Gees dominate second half despite a slow first half

The University of Ottawa’s men’s rugby team ended their regular season with a 24-17 win against l’École de Technologie Supérieure. The win, which took place at Matt Anthony Field, clinched a playoff spot for the Gees who finished the season with a 4-2 record. 

The Gees started the game off slower than usual but were able to bounce back in the second half, securing their place in the playoffs.

While the Gees had home-field advantage, the Piranhas kicked off the game, which gave them momentum during the first half of the game. They scored their first try within the first two minutes of the game, as well as successfully getting a drop goal. This made the score 0-7 for the Piranhas. 

However, the Gees gained possession of the ball shortly after. They moved forward, getting closer to their try-line, eventually scoring a try after twenty-three minutes of the first half.

Afterwards, the Piranhas kicked the ball from the halfway line and ended up making their way to their try-line where they lost possession of the ball in a scrum. The Gees gained possession and kicked the ball out and away from the try-line. During this play, player Kieran Blair, was injured and carried off the field. 

Most of the first half was played with the Gee’s defending their side as the Piranhas were playing strong defence. The Gees were able to score a try which made the score 7-5. However,  the Piranhas scored again despite defensive measures from the Gees, making the score 14-5 going into the second half.

The Piranhas managed to score another try within the first nine minutes of the second half. The score was 17-5 with the Piranhas in a comfortable lead. 

However, the Gees came back strong, playing very close to the Piranhas try-line, until Jamie Armstrong brought the ball past the try-line into the in-goal area. Within fifteen minutes of the second half, the Gees brought the score up to a respectful 17-12.

The Gees were able to gain possession of the ball on multiple occasions during the second half, which ultimately helped their momentum towards the end of the game. The Piranhas were not giving up, however, and were able to push the Gees closer to their in-goal area. 

But ETS ultimately lost possession of the ball, which allowed Gees player Simba Gumbo to outrun the Piranhas entire defense, and reach the in-goal area. This pushed the Gees forward, putting them in the lead by a score of 19-17. 

However, the Gees were not done yet. With seven minutes left in the game, the Gees had possession of the ball, and were able to stay near the try-line. Duncan Hladik, was able to pass into the in-goal area, giving the Gees another five points. Despite honest efforts, the Piranhas were not able to catch up, making the final score of the game 24-17 for the men in Garnet and Grey. 

This successful win for the men’s rugby team safely secures their spot in playoffs, while the Piranhas must win their next game in order to move forward.

Gee-Gees coach, Andrew ‘Bones’ Armstrong, said he’s proud of his team as they move forward, and proud of the progress they have been able to make in past regular seasons.

“Our first year we won two games, our second year we won three games, and now we won four games… that was a big goal for us, so it feels really good.”

“We’ve played some really close games and been under pressure, we know we can score if we execute… So that was the message at halftime, ‘let’s execute, let’s lower the number of mistakes we’re making,’ and that worked out, fortunately,” said Armstrong.