Gap in scores in women's rugby continues to grow

Alyssa Wheeler
October 6, 2022
Est. Reading Time: 2 minutes

It’s the biggest margin of victory yet, but this time in an unfortunate Marauders loss for the Marauders women's rugby team

As the McMaster University women’s rugby team entered week five of competition, they geared up to face the Queen’s Gaels. The Gael’s hold the number one spot on the U Sports women's rugby leaderboard and are the reigning national champions. It was obvious from the get-go that it would be a tough match ahead. 

Coming into the week McMaster ranked quite highly themselves, having secured the number nine position in the U Sports ranking. They were coming off a 77 to zero win against the Laurier Golden Hawks and looked to provide a real challenge for the Gryphons. 

Unfortunately for the Marauders, they weren’t able to provide much resistance in their battle with Canada’s number one, losing by a final score of 96 to three. Following the loss, McMaster was removed from the U Sports top 10 list.  

Facing a top ranked team has proven to be a challenge for most teams.  The top five ranked teams have yet to be beaten.

Katie Mcleod, the captain of the women’s team, discussed how difficult it can be facing teams like the Gaels and the strategy that goes along with these big games to ensure the team keeps on moving forward. 

“We’ve been focusing on setting goals going into games. Not necessarily score focused goals, but systems goals,” said Mcleod. 

“We’ve been focusing on setting goals going into games. Not necessarily score focused goals, but systems goals,” 

Katie Mcleod, Captain of women's rugby team

She noted her team seemed to know this game would result in a defeat, showing the importance of goal setting to continue measuring progress regardless of the outcome. 

“Going into our Queen’s game, we kind of knew it would be a loss,” explained Mcleod.  

The game ended going in the way of the Gaels, as was apparently anticipated. Mcleod was the lone scorer for the Marauders.  

But why do these scores keep occurring? How do these substantial margins continue to happen game after game and for every team, not just McMaster?  

“It comes down to the legacy that teams have developed. Some teams have full time head coaches, which provides for better recruitment,” said Mcleod. 

This message seems to ring true, seeing the recent scores throughout the league. It also makes sense that stronger players recruited to only certain schools would lend itself to the creation of uneven scores. Though it looks like McMaster is trying to compete with these top ranked teams with the addition of head coach Chris Jones and his coaching staff

“Now that we’ve gotten a new coaching staff, I know that recruitment has become something more on the radar. Hopefully in a few years we can be at a higher level,” explained Mcleod. 

Looking to finish the season strong, the Marauders women's rugby team will face York and Brock to wrap up the season. It will become very important for the team to keep their focus on the season ahead, despite the prospect of a promising future they may already be looking forward to. 


  • Alyssa Wheeler

    Alyssa is in her third year of Human Behaviour and enjoys watching many sports, but finds herself mostly watching either soccer or basketball. As a new writer to the Sil, she’s excited to learn the ins and outs of McMaster sports. Outside of the Sil, you can find her at practice for the varsity women’s soccer team, begging a Starbucks employee for a pumpkin muffin, or trying to beat anyone she knows in FIFA.

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