Team hits road for final time, hopes to build off win

The premier team in NCAA Division-I women’s rugby will take to the road for the final time this season. 

The Panthers will be traveling to Ames, Iowa, to take on the Iowa State Cyclones.

The Panthers are coming off of a huge momentum-boosting win against a physical and talented Northern Iowa team.

The Panthers will look to continue that energy in the next game.

“I hope we can keep the momentum going,” Eastern head coach Frank Graziano said. “We were on such an emotional high when we played against Northern Iowa. It will be a challenge to see if we can bring enough intensity.”

Eastern shut out Iowa State in last year’s match-up by a score of 55-0, and they have beaten the Cyclones in each of the previous three contests.

“We have proven to ourselves that we can beat this team, but like all the other games, we won’t underestimate them,” senior flyhalf Tina Crema said. “We had a good game last week, so we are feeling really confident this week.”

For the Panthers to come away with the road victory, it will be key that they grab control of the game from the opening minutes, and force the Cyclones to play catch-up for the remainder of the game.

A lot of credit has been given to the offensive performances the Panthers have displayed this season, but the defensive performances have been just as impressive as of late.

The Panther defense has established itself as a serious presence .The Panthers have not allowed more than 15 points in a single game this season, and managed to shut out the Quinnipiac Bobcats in the first ever NCAA Division I women’s rugby game on Sept. 18.

“I feel like our defense will be awesome this weekend,” Crema said. “We have a lot of momentum going into this game, and I feel like we have seen what we really can do when we use our strength and passion out on the field.”

The Panthers will take on the Cyclones at 11 a.m. Saturday.

Jordan Pottorff can be reached at 581-7942 or [email protected].