Panthers power their way past Saint Mary's 60-5 to earn playoff spot

Panthers power their way past Saint Mary's 60-5 to earn playoff spot

(HALIFAX, N.S.)—The UPEI Panthers used six different scorers en-route to a 60-5 victory over the hosts SMU Huskies on Sunday afternoon in Atlantic University Sport women's rugby action from Huskies Stadium on Homecoming Weekend. 

Fourth-year prop Frances MacWilliam (Alberton, PE) opened the scoring early in the 3rd minute off a quick penalty tap and go for the try.  
 
MacWilliam added her own conversion kick for the Panthers and UPEI led 7-0. 

On the next kickoff, SMU was called for several high tackle penalties and UPEI chose a scrum five meters out.  

Second-year hook/wing Tessa Hood (Charlottetown, PE) added her first of three trys on the afternoon and MacWilliam added the conversion kick for a quick 14-0 UPEI lead. 

UPEI received the ensuing kickoff but possession was stolen by SMU's Julie Naugler (Stillwater Lake, NS) and a UPEI high tackle penalty gave SMU a chance to kick for the corner inside UPEI's 22-meter line.  

Saint Mary's recycled the ball a few times, building pressure but the ball rolled out of touch and the UPEI line-out went uncontested into the center. 

The Panthers proceeded to bobble the ball forward for an attacking scrum for Saint Mary's, who recycled pressure on PEI but were called for a holding on penalty. 

Hood scored off the penalty and MacWilliam added the conversion kick for a 21-0 cushion. 

Late tries were added in the first half by Tara Campbell (Summerside, PE) and Hood with her third of the contest for a 31-0 halftime lead. 

The Panthers opened the second half with a Penalty Try and led 38-0. 

Mia Fradsham (Marshfield, PE), Campbell, Madison Clements (Tyne Valley, PE) and Emily Duffy (Saint John, NB) rounded out the UPEI scoring in the second half and Fradsham added a conversion kick. 

Teaghen Philip (Halifax, NS) added a late last second try for Saint Mary'sas time expired for a 60-5 UPEI win. 

For her efforts, Hood was named Player of the Game. 

UPEI improves to 2-3 in conference play while SMU falls to 0-5. 

Both teams end the regular season this upcoming week, with SMU hosting StFX October 9th at 7 p.m. while Acadia visits UPEI October 12th at 2 p.m. 

Dominic Nolasco, Saint Mary's Communications 

Photo Mona Ghiz