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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Men’s and Women’s Rugby Fall Update

<ll term underway, the Carleton men’s and women’s rugby teams have both enjoyed notable seasons. The women’s rugby team enjoyed an undefeated season in league play, finishing first in all of Division III and surrendering only one loss, to the Division I University of Minnesota.

The women set their sights high at the beginning of the season by aiming to qualify for nationals, held on Nov. 19 and 20 in Philadelphia. This will be the first time the national tournament has ever been held at the Division III level.

Despite the team’s excellent record, the season has not been without its difficulties. “We’ve had a lot of injuries,” said Backs captain Robin Burrell.

Fortunately, this has not been as problematic as it could have been, as the team has acquired no fewer than nineteen new players for the season—the biggest freshman class ever.

“They’ve brought a lot of fresh energy and young talent,” said Burrell. With all of the injuries, she continued, “the rookies have really had to step up—a few of them have moved into starting spots for us.”
Next up for the women’s team will be playoffs this weekend in St. Cloud. Finishing in the top two teams there will then send them to the regional tournament, held over Nov. 5 and 6 in Wayne, Nebraska.  They will have to win the regional tournament in order to qualify for nationals.

On the men’s side, the Oaks have seen success as well, improving over past years to boast a 2-2 record and beating rival St. Olaf for the first time in recent memory. “Our goal has been to beat St. Olaf for a long time,” said senior fullback Jon Raberg. “Now that that’s done, we’re just working to keep improving, keep advancing.”

The team took on eight rookies this year, and aim sto improve its own game for the rest of the season by facing up against some tough non-conference competition. Up next, the Oaks will join forces with rival St. Olaf in a game against the Pigs, St. Paul’s undefeated men’s rugby squad. “It will be a good learning experience,” said Raberg.

Apart from the Pigs, the Oaks have two remaining games in the fall season, one against Gustavus Adolphus College, the other against the Minneapolis Mayhem.

Both games are expected to be close. “There’s a lot of potential on the team,” said Raberg. “We have some really good young players.” While nationals may not be in the cards this year, the Oaks have made significant strides this season and are looking toward a strong showing in the future.

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