The Kent Crusaders girls HS team defeated local rivals Budd Bay Sunday 29-5 in the opening match of Rugby Washington league play in Lacey, Wash.
Paced by an outstanding effort from USA U20 prospect Cassidy Meyers, Kent played much of the game in the Budd Bay half and scored five tries.
In a match where Budd Bay often had the measure of the breakdowns, Kent were told by coach Rex Norris before the match they would be defending a great deal. This proved true early, and the Crusaders were up to the task. But the savvy Kent team was able to force a few turnovers against a very young Budd Bay team that returned only four experienced players from 2011.
After a turnover Meyers did just enough to race in at the corner. And some minutes later powerful loose forward Roujan Khorrami, who gave the Budd Bay tacklers fits all day, went over.
Center Josie Hondolero capped off a nice movement through the hands to score in the corner to make it 17-0 at halftime, and ten minutes into the second half, scrumhalf Devon Vieira capped off a long series of Kent pressure to put the score at 22-0.
The Budd Bay team battled on, making several breaks through the day, paced by prop forward Josie Markoff and scrumhalf Megan Johnson. Johnson is also a USA U20 prospect.
Ball handling at crucial moments and a lack of experience in support running stymied Budd Bay’s most promising attacks. But then they produced something out of nothing.
Pinned at her own tryline, fullback Christa Cushon thumped a massive punt downfield, and fped off to chase. She caught her opposite just in front of the Kent tryline and tackled her back into Kent’s in-goal, forcing a five-meter scrum.
From that scrum Johnson darted weak, drew two defenders, and deftly fed her wing for the try.
Meyers ran a nifty cutback to seal the game 29-5.
Meyers and Johnson were the class of the game, which certainly wasn’t of a mid-season standard, but was entertaining nonetheless. Budd Bay, coached by Quigg Davis, featured a group of mostly underclassmen who have never played rugby before, and did well to compete with one of the top programs in the country.