You may well have noticed from our incredibly excitable social media posts that UYWRUFC has had a pretty exceptional year, both on and off the pitch. As we approach Roses on the 5th and 6th of May, lets have a little look down memory lane, and celebrate some of the highs & challenges of UYWRUFC's 2017/18.
A pretty great start
We had our biggest and best recruitment drive this year, with 80 new girls turning up to our first taster session - I remember becoming increasingly panicked that we didn't have enough grass space for so many girls, but it really was quite a sight. With so many members we had enough to field two 22 strong squads with leftovers for our first matches, a pretty proud moment for our captains. Debut freshers in the first 1st XV match against Liverpool included Olivia Almond, Emma Lowe, Rebekah Maher, Sofya Zakharova, Jasmine Eames, Julia Davies and Alice Ingram. First 1st XV starts also came for Fran Bannister, Georgia Gunson, Willow Ingleton and Issie Cowan. Massive shift for a 34-15 win. Meanwhile the 2nd XV began their season in a new, much tougher league, with loads of freshers debuting some freshly learnt skills: Molly Johnson, Ella Potter, Ellie Moran, Anne-Marie Norton, Daisy Whitwood, Pippa Davies, Beth Naylor-Smith, Louise Burley, Charlotte Pether, Carys Thompson, Ellen Codling, Sophie Sentance, Grace Evans, Rachel Evans, Fay Wainwright, Freya Wood and Emily Hawkins.
A double header to remember
15th November saw a double home win for UYWRUFC, with the 1st XV beating Sheffield Hallam, and the 2nd XV Northumbria. Debuts from Courtney Armstrong and Cat Orr in the 2nd XV.
Reclaim the Night
On 25th November we held our first Reclaim the Night march in York city centre, held in partnership with IDAS. The turn out was amazing, and for an incredible cause. Those who came stood in solidarity with sexual violence victims and committed themselves to ridding our streets of fear.
A very happy Christmas
By Christmas, the 1st XV remained undefeated against all the teams in their league, and were into the Quarter Finals of the cup. A debut in the 1st XV was made by Rachel Evans against Hull. Meanwhile, the 2nd XV had made some excellent ground in their league, with some convincing wins. Some losses had been taken, but not without a fight, and an amazing display of rugby. Debuts throughout first term from Megan Havers, Nadia Mudey, Issy Drabek, Emily Hawkridge, Willow Gossan, Meg Siddowen, Katie Moran and Marina Lewis in the 2nd XV.
New term, same winning grins
Some awesome debuts in the 1st XV match against Liverpool from Ella Potter and Molly Johnson in the forwards led to yet another brilliant victory, even though it was in the dead of night.
Seriously... how can there be more matches?!
The weather meant that both teams were playing crazy amounts of matches in the Spring term. The 2nd XV played 2 in fives days in early February, displaying great character and drive. Meanwhile, the 1st XV were through to the Cup semi-final, and on their way to the top of the league. Their match against Lancaster was won 39-0, with an outstanding debut from Ellie Moran. February also saw our #ItsNotOkCampaign and the shortlisting of our Coach, Ian, for Coach of the Year at the York Active Awards 2018. It also saw a bizarre peak in injuries, especially in the front five positions, but both teams stepped up, gritted their teeth and kept on.
4 matches in 10 days plus a President's weekend
So came around the Cup semi-final, away at Sheffield Hallam. Again, in the dead of night, chucking it down with rain and having only had half an hour to warm up, the 1st XV played the toughest match of their season against a seriously good Sheffield Hallam. Clocked in a win though, and onwards... to 48 hours later, where they find themselves playing UCLAN in the league, again, in the middle of the night, but yet another win. Debut in the team for Ann-Marie Norton. President's weekend is a fun-fuelled two day bender, glad to see our old friends return to the stomping ground but almost die halfway through the Old Girls vs New Girls traditional Sunday match.
Tired legs approach the Cup Final in Manchester, against a vastly improved and very competitive Durham side. Still, not much phases our 1st XV who get another win and become Cup Champions, 52-19. One more match, at this point we begin to question whether we even do a degree, if our legs still work and what day even is it?? The league winning match against UCLAN and its done, its official, UYWRUFC 1st XV have done the double - league and cup champions. Meanwhile the 2nd XV is in Newcastle, showing them how the golden girls get it done. The 2nd XV end their season 3rd in the league, an outstanding achievement given the standard of teams they were up against. Two wins, massive, ridiculous celebrations ensue. And then we slept...
A fabulous 5 day stay in Lisbon was an excellent way to end an amazing term. We played a friendly, mixed team match against Sporting Lisbon in bright pink tour shirts and then enjoyed the sites the city had to offer, including a questionable Irish bar and some weird black vodka shots. (Its best not to ask)
We've celebrated our BUCS season, and now we're ready to celebrate some more. We're not complacent, so we've been working hard on our fitness all Easter, and are training with furore. We hope you're ready for us Lancaster, because we have plenty more processo to pop.
Our teams are playing:
2nd XV - Saturday 5th May - 4.30pm KO - Rugby pitch 2
1st XV - Sunday 6th May - 1.30pm KO - Stadium
Find out more, here: https://roseslive.co.uk/live