Captain Sophie de Goede leads Queen's to 1st USports women's rugby title

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KINGSTON, Ont. — The Queen’s Golden Gaels captured their first USports women’s rugby championship with a 26-18 victory over the Ottawa Gee-Gees on Sunday.

Kianna Kozak, Sophie de Goede and Jaden Walker scored tries for the Gaels in front of their home crowd at Nixon Field.

Captain de Goede added three penalty goals and a convert and was named championship MVP.

Taylor Donato and Madison Grant scored tries for the Gee-Gees. Claire Gallagher scored two penalty goals and a convert.

The Laval Rouge et Or beat the Victoria Vikes 32-26 in the third-place game.

Walker’s 49th-minute try gave the Gaels a 20-15 lead, and de Goede increased the advantage with a penalty convert in the 66th.

Gallagher chipped away at the deficit with a penalty goal in the 71st before de Goede sealed it with another three points in the 75th.

It was redemption for Queen’s, which settled for silver in the 2019 final. The Gee-Gees lost the final for the second time in franchise history (2016). Ottawa won gold in 2017.

The two sides were tied 15-15 at halftime.

Down 15-7 in the first half, Ottawa got back in the game with Grant’s try in the 34th minute (missed convert) and Gallagher’s penalty convert in the 40th.

Kozak scored the game’s first try in the sixth and Donato replied four minutes later.

De Goede made it 12-7 with a try in the 13th but missed the convert. She kicked her first penalty goal of the match in the 24th minute.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 14, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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