GLENDALE, Colo. – The Harvard women's rugby team defeated Ivy League rival Dartmouth, 26-24, in the Bowl Semifinal before falling to Central Washington, 34-12, in the Bowl Final of the 2018 USA Rugby 7s Championship on Sunday. Freshman Milan Roberts led the Crimson in scoring with 21 points, while sophomore Delia Hellander contributed 12 points (2 t, 1c) and senior Haley Langan accounted for five. Harvard went 1-4 at the Division I national championship tournament and finished sixth in the nation.
For fixture results from all four divisions, please visit usacollege7s.com.
Bowl Semifinal – Harvard 26, Dartmouth 24
The Crimson emerged victorious from a high-flying, hard-hitting bowl semifinal over Ancient Eight rival Dartmouth. Roberts led Harvard with 14 points off two tries and a pair of conversions. Hellander had seven points (1 t, 1c) and Langan scored once.
Harvard obtained the first attacking opportunity after a knock-on on the opening kick. Roberts took a pass from junior Sarah Lipson and looped through the Dartmouth defense for the opening score. The back from Ottawa converted to put Harvard up, 7-0, in the first minute of play.
Dartmouth answered back on the ensuing possession after a broken play from the Big Green scattered Harvard's line. The sides traded turnovers, before Roberts scored and converted the kick in the fifth minute to give Harvard back the lead, 14-7.
Camille Johnson scored on the final play of the half and the kick was converted as the two teams went into the intermission squared away at 14.
Senior Maya Learned secured a short kickoff in the second half, but Darmtouth committed a foul to halt play. Hellander tapped in quickly and fed junior Genevieve Quirion for two massive gains. Langan completed the possession with her only try of the day, putting it down in the left corner the opening minute of the second half.
Dartmouth scored in the 12th minute, but was unsuccessful on the conversion and the sides remained tied, 19-19.
Harvard worked the ball around on the kickoff. Hellander used a stiff arm to break through the Dartmouth line and took it 80 meters for the try. The conversion was good to put Harvard up, 26-19.
The Big Green received the kick and gained a lot of field quickly. When it seemed Dartmouth was sure to score, Learned laid a brutal tackle to the ball carrier. Although Harvard's opponent retained possession and scored as time expired, the hit was enough to force the Big Green outside where the conversion was missed. Harvard won the Bowl Semifinal, 26-24.
Bowl Final vs. Central Washington
The Bowl Final of the 2018 USA Rugby 7s Championship pitted Harvard head coach Mel Denham's current team versus her former squad. The match was the first ever meeting between the two programs.
Harvard's forwards were dominant throughout the first half. The trio of Langan, Learned, and Robyn Beese won 3-of-3 scrums, helping Harvard gain or retain possession as the Crimson and the Wildcats battled back-and-forth.
Central Washington's Asinate Serevi – daughter of all-time great Waisale Serevi - touched down for the first try of the match. The conversion was unsuccessful, but Serevi scored again in the sixth minute as the Wildcats extended their lead, 12-0.
CWU added another try before the half to go up 17-0. Hellander nearly prevented the score with a tackle in front of the goal line, but Jenny Johnson scooped it up for the easy try, 17-0.
Harvard took the opening kickoff the distance when Lipson took a pass from Roberts for a large gain and dished the rock to Hellander for a 50-plus meter try, 17-5.
Central Washington answered right back with another try by Johnson. The conversion was made to put CWU up, 24-5. The Wildcats added another seven points a minute later.
In the 12th minute, Roberts' quick step broke past CWU and the rookie touched down for five more points. The fly-half converted for two more points, 24-12.
Central Washington's Paige Wyatt added the final points of the match and the Wildcats took the win, 34-12.