CIS

Photo: Jaclyn McRae-Sadik.

Gee-Gees need time to ramp up to championship form once again

The Gee-Gees women’s rugby team began their conference title defence at home on Sept. 3 against a much-improved Montreal Carabins team.

While the game didn’t have the thunderous start that characterized the the Gees’ previous season, the national bronze medalists still took care of business to the tune of a 28-17 victory.

Second-year front row player Alexandra Ellis had a breakout year last season, and she continued to expand her dominance with two tries to kick off the new season.

The team’s coaches placed particular emphasis on enhancing defensive capabilities throughout the match. Without this strategy, the game could’ve had a drastically different final result.

Perhaps a summer’s worth of playing nationally and internationally caught up to the team early, along with a new system that may need time to manifest itself.

The Carabins played the Gee-Gees tougher than most other teams in the Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) last year. Early in the season, it’s difficult to determine whether the result of the game was due to the Gees coming out somewhat flat-footed by their standards, or simply that the Carabins are ready to take a next step.

By no means does an 11-point victory mean that there’s concern surrounding the power of the Gee-Gees this year. However, it does provide another storyline to watch for in upcoming games.

Once the team settles into their schedule and can face some of the weaker teams in the conference, the kinks will be worked out and they’ll start looking more like themselves.

There are a lot of nerves that go into a season and home opener, particularly when the team didn’t participate in any exhibition competition to prepare themselves for the season.

Time is key, and luckily for Gee-Gees women’s rugby there’s plenty of time to figure everything out. For now, the team is 1-0 and under no real threat of snapping their 15-game consecutive RSEQ win streak.

The Gee-Gees take on the Laval Rouge et Or at home on Matt Anthony Field at 4 p.m. on Sept. 10.