2011 CIS Ranking: N/A
2011 Canada West Ranking: 4th
2011 Conference Record: 1-3-0
2011 Playoff record: 0-2-0
Last CW Championship: N/A
Last CIS title: N/A
Key returnees: Abby Goodwin, Melissa Robinson, Courtney Goulet, Chelsey Minter
Key additions: Kara Galbraith, Lizzie Adams, Morgan King, Shannon Fitzpatrick, Dacey Livingstone, Laura Crowe-Hutchon
Key departures: Sarah Logan, Jessica Moretto, Roxanne Neville, Andrina Nixon, Jesse Olynyk, Randi Hunter
VICTORIA, B.C. – Entering into his first season as the head coach of the University of Victoria Vikes women’s rugby team, Mark Hall will be looking to use his years of experience to lead the rookie-laden group to another Canada West Final Four competition.
In their 2011 Canada West campaign, the Vikes had a record of 1-3-0 with their solitary win over UBC, sufficient enough to qualify them for Canada West playoffs. In Canada West Final Four play, the UVic women took on the defending Canada West champions, Lethbridge, resulting in a 31-14 loss for the Vikes. In the consolation round the Vikes were up against hosts, the Calgary Dinos, fell short by a single try scored in the last play of the game.
As head coach, Hall brings 35 years of coaching experience and will be a veritable asset to the Vikes women’s rugby program. He has experience at club, provincial, and national levels and will be using this knowledge to guide the UVic women through both the Canada West and the Vancouver Island Rugby Union season.
Amongst the key returnees is fourth-year lock Abby Goodwin (Charlottetown, P.E.I.). As the lone Vike with Canada West All-Star honours last season, Goodwin also gained Under-20 national team experience that will prove to be valuable to this year’s forward line. Additional returnees, fourth and fifth-year captains Courtney Goulet (White Rock, B.C.) and Melissa Robinson (North Vancouver, B.C.), will be counted on to provide some solid leadership, while prop Chelsey Minter (Sidney, B.C.) has also returned to play her fifth year.
The 2012 squad will be without veterans Jesse Olynyk (Kamloops, B.C.) and Sarah Logan (Bamfield, B.C.) however several freshmen to watch include Kara Galbraith (Ladysmith, B.C.), Lizzie Adams (Courtenay, B.C.), Morgan King (Regina, Sask.) and Shannon Fitzpatrick (Calgary, Alta.).
The four first-year Vikes were key members of their provincial teams this past summer as they competed in the national U-18 tournament.
Additionally, rookie Dacey Livingstone (Red Deer, Alta.) will provide some excitement on the wing with her speed and deception, while first-year forward Laura Crowe-Hutchon (West Vancouver, B.C.) will be a handful for opposing outside halves.
The Vikes will open their Canada West season at home on Wallace Field on Sept. 21 at 5:00 p.m. against the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns. The UVic women play again on home turf Sept. 23, against the University of Calgary Dinos at 11:30 a.m.