UCD Women’s Rugby Club wins SSI IRFU Division 1 League

Posted 25 November 2021

The UCD Women’s Rugby Club are the 2021 Student Sport Ireland IRFU Women’s Division 1 League champions following a 20-05 win at the Belfield Bowl.

A strong second half performance against the University of Limerick gave the UCD squad the win, with a penalty early on after the break helping to clear the deadlock that had left both sides 0-0 at half-time.

The well contested final saw players from the Energia All-Ireland League and Interprovincial squads line out for both sides, alongside a number of players playing rugby for the first time at third level.

“It’s college rugby. Everyone is learning,” said UCD captain Christine Coffey, a Senior Women’s Interprovincial representative with Munster, and Energia All-Ireland League player with Railway Union.

“Everyone is just there for the enjoyment of it and there’s a massive social aspect of it as well so everyone is just here for the fun. That’s what we love about it and then getting a bit of silverware is always nice on top of that.”

Speaking after the win, UCD coach Alice O’Callaghan, who played with the club in 2011, said rugby at third level represented a great opportunity to make friends and play the sport in a friendly but still competitive environment.

“In UCD we’ve created a fantastic environment. We’ve girls who are new to the game and we’ve also girls who have played before.

“It’s just a great environment to make friends… [to] see the same people two nights a week and have great fun.” 

UCD Squad: Alais Diebold, Jennifer Dunn, Daphne Raoult, Katie Hogan, Aiveen Treacy; Emma Kelly, Christine Coffey; Alix Cunneen, Wren Higgins, Cara Donovan, Siobhan Boyle, Anna Potterton, Anna Kavanagh, Emma Costello, and Margaret Edlund.

Replacements: Rachel Murphy, Eibhlin Laffan Downes, Cecile Mourgues, Tess Meade, Hannah Juul, Alannah Boyle, and Ivanna Dempsey.

Head Coach: Alice O’Callaghan

UCD Scorers - Tries: Katie Hogan, Rachel Murphy, Alannah Boyle; Christine Coffey.  Penalty: Christine Coffey.

UL: Leah McCarty, Emily Kenny, Roisin Houlihan, Hannah Gullane, Grace Butler; Aoibhe O’Flynn, Abbie Salter-Townshend; Siobhan Fitzgerald, Lily Brady, Aine Managan, Caitlin Heffernan, Eva McCormack, Laura Sampson, Meadbh Scally, and Claire Bennett.

Replacements: Niamh Ryan, Becky Nee, Sarah McKeogh, Hannah Foxe, Nicole Murphy, Phoebe Ravenhill, and Marie Deceuninck.

Head Coach: Olan Daly.

UL Scorers - Try: Niamh Ryan.

By: David Kearns, Digital Journalist / Media Officer