Women’s Rugby Wraps Up Season at NIRA 7s Challenge Tournament

Women’s Rugby Wraps Up Season at NIRA 7s Challenge Tournament

Senior Claire Collins touched down for the game-winning try in the Ivy 7s Championship game against Dartmouth last week (Elan Kawesch).

CAMBRDIGE, Mass
. – Harvard women's rugby will conclude its 2017 campaign at the National Intercollegiate Rugby Association (NIRA) 7s Challenge tournament hosted by Dartmouth Sunday, April 30. The Crimson will face off with West Chester, Army, AIC and Dartmouth in pool play, before the playoff round that begins at 4:20 p.m.

Last Time Out
Harvard (15-4) collected its second consecutive Ivy 7s Championship with a 10-5 win over Dartmouth in the finals Sunday afternoon. The Crimson outscored the Big Green, 10-0, in the second half to take control of the match and earn the Ivy title. Senior Claire Collins collected the game-winning try for Harvard, and junior captain Maya Learned converted on a penalty kick to secure the championship.

NIRA 7s Challenge Breakdown
The Crimson will play a total of five games Sunday in the 25-game, five-team tournament in Hanover, New Hampshire. Harvard, along with Army, Dartmouth, West Chester and AIC, will compete in the top division for the NIRA 7s Challenge Cup. The Crimson opens with West Chester at 9:20 a.m. and Army at 12:20 p.m., followed by a 1:40 p.m. matchup with AIC and a 3 p.m. contest against Dartmouth.

Ivy 7s Championship Recap
The Crimson earned its second-straight conference title as it finished 2-1 in pool play with wins over Columbia and Penn, earning a semifinal matchup against Princeton. Harvard took down the Tigers, 22-19, to clinch a spot in the championship game. Having fallen to Dartmouth, 12-0, earlier in the day, the Crimson rallied from a first-half deficit to earn a hard-fought 10-5 win for its second-straight Ivy 7s Championship.

Defensive Foundation
Harvard has relied heavily on its defense to stifle opponents throughout the year. Through 19 matches, Harvard is allowing an average of just eight points per contest. The Crimson has held teams scoreless nine different times, including two streaks of four-straight shutouts.

Crimson Contributions
Eight different Crimson touched down for the tries over the course of the Ivy championship, led by five tries from freshman Delia Hellander. Hellander collected four tries in Harvard's 45-0 thrashing of Penn, marking the highest total in a game for any Crimson this season. Along with Hellander, sophomores Genevieve Quirion, Caitlin Weigel, Rachel Harkavy and freshmen Victoria Tong, Emily Prentice and Becky Soilson found the end zone for Harvard at the championship. Senior Claire Collins also scored for the Crimson, touching down for the game-winning try in the Ivy title game.

Familiar Foes
Harvard has already seen all four of its upcoming opponents earlier in the season. The Crimson is a combined 5-2 against the four other teams in its division at the NIRA 7s Challenge. Harvard defeated AIC, 29-0, and also picked up its first of two wins on the year against West Chester at the Crimson 7s March 25. After handing West Chester a 31-7 defeat the following week, the Crimson fell to Army, 28-10, on April 9. Harvard has seen Ancient Eight foe, Dartmouth, three times over the past two weekends, going 2-1 against the Big Green.