By: K.J. Wylie/GCU Staff
It is every coach’s dream to witness their players maximize their potential by coming together as a team.
When it comes to Grand Canyon University’s Women’s Rugby team, the unselfish style of play is becoming second nature. The Lopes traveled to California for the second game of the calendar year to take on Cal-State Northridge last weekend, and captured yet another dominating victory, 56-12.
Wanting to continue the search for ways to improve, regardless of how impressive the team performed the week before, Lopes’ Head Coach Daniela Mogro was particularly pleased with how well the team began rucking.
“Last weeks game versus UofA, we didn’t drive as well as we could,” said Mogro. “By minimizing errors and focusing more on rucks, we were able to create a better offense.”
Lopes’ forwards Kaley Lightfoot, Dallas Sheperd and Mackartnie Gandy were exceptional on both the offensive end-with assists and protection-and the defensive end with stopping runners who broke the line.
“Northridge was a physical team,” said Mogro. “It’s easy to always point out who scored in a win, but it’s support players like these that are just as valuable to create the scoring opportunity. Total team effort.”
Although Grand Canyon’s undefeated season looks extremely impressive as they prepare for a home game this weekend against University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Mogro points out that records and stats are trivial for the program as a whole.
“This is a marathon, not a sprint,” said Mogro. “We focus on executing and breaking down new things every week so can keep playing our style rather than reacting to someone else’s. There’s still a long way to go.”
Sunday’s game will be held at GCU’s Practice Soccer Field on campus, and begins at noon. Admission to the game is FREE.
Interested in joining the women’s rugby team? Contact the coach to learn more!