The New York Rugby Club headed south for the last match of the Women’s Premier League regular season, eager to take home a victory over the Washington Women’s RFC. With high intensity, the New York team fought hard for 80 minutes but was unable to overtake the home team. The Furies secured a 19-7 win, wrapping up the season with an even 3-3 record.
It was a beautiful fall day in Manassas on Sunday, but the action on the field was no walk in the park. From the kick-off New York came out hard on offense, bringing the ball into DC territory. Kicks from the defending team moved the ball away from their goal line, but New York’s aptitude in lineouts prevented the Furies from making further gains. The orange offense continued to barrel into the Furies’ defense. New York changed the field quickly and often, keeping the Furies on their toes as the ball went first right, then left. Little by little the home team pushed back, bringing the ball over the 50 and into New York ground. A quick tap from a penalty gave DC the momentum they needed. Forwards Tiffany Smith and Joanna Bader challenged the New York defense before the ball was spun wide to fullback Katie “Sally” O’Malley who dodged tackles to touch down a try. With a successful conversion, the Furies took the lead 7-0.
Play continued to march from one side of the field to the other as penalties provided kicks to touch. New York held on to possession despite a Furies defense provoking errors and forward movement. Their offensive tenacity paid off and New York found a hole in the defense and dotted it down, evening the score for halftime.
As the second half began, both teams grappled for the ball, anxious for more points and a pivotal win. The ball turned over from New York to DC, to New York again. Throughout the half New York held the ball more frequently, but were unable to make the necessary headway. Several line breaks were recovered by the Furies defense. As New York brought play to the Furies’ goal line, the home team took control and quickly turned the threat on New York. Again, DC set it up for fullback O’Malley to slice through for a try. As the half wore on the Furies showed the depth of their team with impactful subs from their bench. Fresh legs and a strong defense allowed the Furies one more try before time was out. Despite New York’s quantity of possession, DC was better positioned to capitalize on their opponent’s mistakes, earning the coveted win.
It has been an unprecedented WPL season for both teams. New York maintains a winless record for the season, a long fall from National Champions in 2010. The Furies have turned the corner in their competition with the most successful season the team has seen in the Premier League. Heading to Nationals, New York and DC will join Atlanta and San Diego in the bottom tier competition and a fight for 5th place. These two teams might yet face each other once more before the year is out.
View the complete WPL schedule, results and more here.