Summit girls rugby team starts season with several wins, including Summit 7’s tournament champion
The Summit High School girls rugby team has begun its quest for a 15th straight state title.
After opening the season with a win against Eagle Valley on Sept. 7, the Tigers were supposed to play in its first tournament in Denver on Saturday, Sept. 10.
However due to heavy rain storms throughout the weekend, the games were canceled and the team was forced to wait until Saturday, Sept. 17, when the team got the opportunity to compete in the Summit 7’s rugby tournament at Summit High School.
At the Summit 7’s rugby tournament, the Tigers hosted 18 teams across three divisions. With the Tigers having its largest roster in program history, the team was separated into multiple varsity-level and junior varsity teams.
“Because of the amount of girls we have this year we had to split us up in a way that would be beneficial to all of us,” team member Citlali Licea said.
In the varsity cup division, Summit’s green team rolled to its first tournament win of the season in front of an enthusiastic and encouraging home crowd.
The green team began the tournament with two wins in pool play over Evergreen and Regis Jesuit. The Tigers beat both teams handily, beating Evergreen 38-5 and Regis Jesuit 31-5, but head coach Karl Barth said the team struggled early against the Regis Jesuit Raiders.
After scoring right away against Regis Jesuit, Summit struggled to regain possession of the ball. Summit tried to regain possession of the ball but grew more and more frustrated.
The frustration resulted in senior Pelham Wagenseil being given a yellow card which allowed the Raiders to score its first try of the game, evening the score at 5-5 going into halftime.
“I think defense was really hard, we were kind of bunched up on the defensive side,” senior Paola Arredondo said of the green team’s frustration in the first half. “It was hard to have a good defensive line or shift because we were not all on the same page.”
In the second half Summit took the field with newfound energy, led in large part by junior Ashley Misch, senior Joselin Rogue and junior Rose Rode. Four different players scored tries for the Tigers in the second half giving the team its 31-5 victory over the Raiders.
In the semifinal match, Summit cruised to a 53-0 shutout win over East High School. Senior Arredondo and sophomore Olivia Lyman recorded three tries each for the Tigers while Misch provided a much-needed level of physicality on both sides of the ball.
In the championship match, the Tigers lined up against its opponent from last year’s state championship match the Monarch High School Coyotes. In the state championship match, the Tigers were nothing short of dominant, winning the game 33-0 for its 14th straight state title.
On Saturday, the Tigers once again made quick work of the Coyotes, beating the team by a margin of 40 points, 45-5. The entire team displayed spectacular play throughout the championship match and were led by senior Joselin Roque’s 20 points.
“It was a nice tournament, lots of people went, it was nice weather,” Arredondo said. “I had a lot of fun and I learned a lot about my team and how we are going to grow in the future.”
Summit’s gold team — who also played in the varsity cup division — went 2-1 during the tournament, losing to Monarch while notching wins against Vista Ranch and Fort Collins.
The gold team placed third overall in the division behind the Summit green team and Monarch.
The Tigers junior varsity team also had its fair share of wins, beating Eagle Valley, Brighton Fort Collins and Regis Jesuit. The junior varsity squad also tied with Evergreen.
“We had a very mixed team which we weren’t very used to playing with,” Licea said of the gold team’s performance. “We did pretty well. It is difficult to have a bunch of girls because again a lot of them are new players so learning each other’s playing styles was a challenge.”
After a weekend chock full of rugby, the Tigers will recover for the University of Northern Colorado 7’s Jamboree in Greeley on Saturday. Sept. 24.
I think we are all really excited to get back on the field,“ Licea said. “Our very first tournament two weeks ago got canceled so Summit 7’s was our first tournament of the season.I think all of us are really looking forward to getting out there and keep playing with each other. I know I am.”
Following the tournament in Greeley, the Tigers will host East High School on Wednesday, Sept. 28 for the team’s homecoming game. The match is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Summit Daily is embarking on a multiyear project to digitize its archives going back to 1989 and make them available to the public in partnership with the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection. The full project is expected to cost about $165,000. All donations made in 2023 will go directly toward this project.
Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.