Lady Mavericks return to pitch, men’s team gets wakeup call

Published on Tuesday, 18 June 2024 10:41

The Dauphin Lady Mavericks returned to the pitch for the first time in more than 20 years, Saturday, when they traveled to Winnipeg to face the four-time defending Women’s Premier League champion Winnipeg Assassins in a game of 10s.

Fielding a team with experience, the Lady Mavericks played well in a 19-10 loss, with Ruth Evans scoring both tries for Dauphin.

Player-coach Cassandra Kostelnyk said the team was expecting to put up a fight, which is exactly what they did.

“But only a nine point difference between us and them and that’s the closest game that they’ve had this year,” she said.

Keeping the score close against the four-time champion Assassins will give the team confidence going forward.

“We held our own and we’re all really proud of ourselves. We played a really good game,” Kostelnyk said, adding the ladies played together as a team.

“And communicated in everything that we’ve been working on in the last couple of months now leading up to the game just really came together,” she said.

But there is still plenty to work on, notably, building their numbers.

The Lady Mavericks only had one substitute, which made for a long, hard game for everyone.

“A lot of us didn’t get a break,” Kostelnyk said.

For anyone interested in joining the Lady Mavericks, they practice, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m., at Kin Field.

The Mavericks men’s team got a rude awakening when they faced the Assassins men’s squad, falling 31-24.

Nick Searle had two tries for Dauphin, while Joseph Lopez and Ryan Dreger had singles. Dreger also had converts.

Mavericks player-coach Shawn Sarkonak said it was a completely different game than the 70-0 win over the Winnipeg Wasps, May 25.

“There wasn’t much defence required in that game (May 25), but the guy definitely got a rude awakening being on the other side of the ball a lot more than they’re used to,” he said.

The loss was a learning experience, Sarkonak said, especially for the younger members of the team.

“Seeing what it takes to play a full 80 minutes. And when you’re exposed on the defensive side or having to be on the defensive side of the ball, you exert far more energy than you’re used to, or probably want to,” he said.

“But with the two differences in the two games, we can now look to fine tune things and find a middle ground. So we can play high level on the offensive side, but also have a very good defensive structure, so we don’t end up on the losing side of it again.”

The Mavericks will play their home opener, Saturday, when they host the Winnipeg Wombats at 3 p.m. It is a game the team is looking forward to.

“We weren’t originally supposed to have our home games start until July. But now we can put on a bit of a show for the residents around the Parkland area and get them excited, because July is going to be home field-heavy and we’re looking to get a lot of support out,” he said.

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