Match report: D2 @ White Horse

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The Furies with an effigy to be burned at the Phoenixville Firebird Festival in December.

D2 headed to Phoenixville, PA for their last hurrah of the fall season. With the sun at their backs, the 21-woman squad went into the game hungry for a win, but ultimately fell 76-0.

The Furies spent most of the first half on their back foot, playing defense. Poor communication and disorganized launching caused the defensive line to bunch, creating the overload for the White Horse backs to exploit.

It was the last match of the fall season and it showed—the Furies lineup has been beset with injuries and illness for a few weeks, and several players had to adjust to unfamiliar positions or duties. But as the game went on, the team acclimated to each other, resulting in an exciting assault in the last 15 minutes of the first half.

A pair of rookies got their first D2 start—lock Carly Gniewek snagged a kickoff and made some great tackles, while hooker Carmen Cordova stepped up to lineouts with ease, throwing beautifully all game.

“I was really happy with how our new developing players stepped up this game. They showed a lot of skill development, which helped us in lineouts and shutting down the defense on the inside,” said Captain Brooke Branson.

It was a tough loss, but full of positives. When the support was there, the back three made important, try-saving tackles. Fullback Sami Topolski Meyerhoff inserted aggressively into the back line, while centers Emma Waite and Kelly Maranchuck ran the ball hard and controlled contact. Scrumhalf Briley Acker ran a fast game, gaining impressive ground on her penalty plays, about 30 meters per carry.

As for the forwards, lineouts were their strength, with both pods getting clean ball most of the time. Forward movements—picks and punches—were aggressive and effective. White Horse dominated the scrums and the pack was unable to counter this, but Briley proved adept at digging the ball out and swinging it out to the backs.

Wing Fiona Dore earned player of the match honors for her strong runs, intimidating defensive play and a truly thrilling cover tackle off a kick. Ten players were nominated for player of the match, the most for any game this season. The Furies play hard and they play for each other!

While the competitive season is over for D2, the squad will come together for the Furies’ B-side match against NYRC on Sunday. The team will then take a much-deserved off-season to recuperate and build on they’ve learned this fall season, and come back swinging in 2018.

D2 DC Furies vs. Phoenixville White Horse 10/21/2017

1. Brooke Branson (C)
2. Carmen Cordova
3. Jennifer Konish
4. Nora Welsh
5. Carly Gniewek
6. Miranda “Mickey” Van Dijk
7. Amirah Al Idrus
8. Amanda Bauer
9. Briley Acker
10. Nell “Biddle” Garver
11. Amanda “Finny” Fins
12. Kelly Maranchuck
13. Emma Waite
14. Fiona Dore
15. Sami Topolski Meyerhoff
16. Alex Hart
17. Liz Peralta-Reed
18. Lia Russell
19. Eli Webster
21. Alexa Couture

Coaches:
Squirrel Birashk
Kate Brown

Player of the match: Fiona Dore

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