Dartmouth Women Ivy Champs!
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Dartmouth women’s rugby team used a pair of second-half tries and a stingy defense to capture its second straight Ivy Rugby title Sunday afternoon. The top-seeded Big Green scored two quick tries midway through the final stanza to defeat Harvard, 14-5, at the Crimson’s Mignone Field and secure their second conference title in as many years since moving to varsity status.
Dartmouth, the reigning Ivy 15's champions, entered the championship matchup against Harvard with a 6-1 record. The Big Green posted a perfect 5-0 mark in Ivy Conference play, including handing the Crimson its only loss on the year (22-19). Dartmouth came off a 45-14 win over Brown in the Ivy semifinal, while Harvard soundly defeated Princeton (55-0) in the semifinal round to play the reigning champs.
Having finished third two years ago, and not placing after consecutive tournament losses last season, Harvard looked to return to the top of the Ivy Conference with a championship victory for the first time since the 2013-14 season.
As it has done all year, Harvard dominated from the opening whistle en route to its second consecutive shutout; the Crimson has allowed just five points total in its previous three games. But for the second straight year, Dartmouth responded with timely scoring and a defense that shutdown the opposition in the second half. As such, it was the Crimson who were unable to put points on the board in the second frame, stifled by a collective effort on defense. And while limiting the points at one end of the field, Dartmouth was able to touch down at the other.
With its first points via a penalty try, Dartmouth gained the lead after the 65th minute. After a successful ruck in the 70th minute, the Big Green bullied their way through several Crimson players to a 20-yard run and the team’s second try of the afternoon. Dartmouth’s second conversion of the contest was key as it put them up nine points, making it a two-score game with under 10 minutes to play.
A final stop near the tryline for Dartmouth and the sound of the referee’s whistle three minutes into extra time sent the Dartmouth bench running onto the field as the Big Green were once again champions of Ivy Rugby. The final score was 14-5.