Annandale-on-Hudson, NY (04/13/2019) — Last fall, Manhattanville visited Bard and defeated the hosts handily in a game of 12s; this spring, the script was flipped. With a slip ‘n’ slide for a field and the temperatures pushing 80 degrees, revenge was best served wet and hot as Bard ran the score up to 29-0 after the first half versus the Valiants. Manhattanville, who sent up two full sides, played a close game with Drew before Bard also played Drew and beat their New Jersey guests after a courageous last-minute defensive stand.
Game 1: Bard College Women 29 vs. 15 Manhattanville College Women
Tries: Leah Leiner (2), Ariadne Sinnis-Bourozikas (1), Tilly Barickman (1), Nellie Bowen (1)
Conversions: Patricia Sikat (2)
This was Bard’s first game of the spring and the first half saw a barrage of tries from the home team. It didn’t take long as Bard scored within the first minute to the delight of cheering fans. In a truly all-around effort, the Raptors kept piling on the tries: captain Leah Leiner scored twice, Tilly Barickman sped into the try-zone for the first time in her career, Nellie Bowen and Ariadne Sinnis-Bourozikas got in on the action and Patricia Sikat made a couple of difficult conversions. While rookie Niskua Medina may not have reached the promised land beyond the try-line, no solo tackler brought her down all afternoon; the former roller-derby player is a nightmare to stop.
Sikat, whose presence is ubiquitous whenever she stays on the field, had the play of the day in the first half. She made an annihilating tackle and popped up to poach, but was rucked out by two Valiants. Unfazed, she pumped her legs and single-handedly overtook the opposing ruckers, which led to scrumhalf Sinnis-Bourozikas picking, dummying, juking and scoring. Sinnis-Bourozikas ran a tight ship all day, demonstrating the leadership necessary from a halfback; teammates need to learn from her example and communicate with each other at all times. Captain Leah Leiner rained stiffarms left and right and didn’t shy from tackling significantly larger women, and Bowen is a reliable, steady force for the team. Barickman is a speedster with the right attitude and paired nicely with Sikat who found a new home in the back-line, combining for multiple scores. The hosts let off the gas in the second half and gave up a try when they did not set up quickly for a penalty conceded and another by misplaying a scrum, but still managed to cruise to the win.
Game 2: Bard College Women 12 vs. 10 Drew University Women
Tries: Patricia Sikat (2)
Conversions: Patricia Sikat (1)
In recent history, Bard has played many close matches with Drew and this game proved no different. Each team was a bit winded by the time this, the final game of the afternoon, rolled around. Not only had Bard played its own game already, but most of their players joined the Drew women in a match versus Manhattanville. The fatigue showed; whereas in its first game, Bard took the ball eagerly into contact and made wise offloads, this game saw too many ill-advised, contact-aversion offloads. On the other side, at times, the defense did not come up, which led to gaps that Drew tried to exploit.
Still, Bard played physically, making their tackles and containing Drew. It was encouraging to see every Raptor swoop in, eager to bring their opponents down. Drew had the opportunity to win the game in the final couple minutes, all spent within five meters of their try-zone. They were turned away multiple times, however, by Bard’s brave goal-line defenders. In the end, each team put in two tries, but a conversion from Sikat was the difference in this one.
Big thanks go out to David Lindholm and the athletics department for its support all year, including in setting up the field; Bard EMS for being onsite throughout the afternoon; Building & Grounds for providing supplies; and friends for coming out to cheer the women on. Bard and Drew enjoyed the day after the final whistle, staying to have a BBQ and soak up the sun.
Bard will try to build on its success as it prepares for the Tri State 7s Championships at Vassar College on April 28.