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BMTA is ecstatic to announce our Women’s 27s team took home the National Championship at last weekend’s #reimagined The Championships 2024. We cannot express how proud we are of the girls securing a win for the affiliate at BMTA's very first National Event. The Mustangs are not to be underestimated, especially when you hear the story of how our Women’s 27s became National Champions.

The commitment to the team was seen from the get-go, coach Bec Simson remained committed to training and managing the girls despite having a baby due close to the event date. BMTA’s star Women’s Opens player, Jenna Rowsell, assisted Bec in coaching the Women’s 27s, whilst remaining committed to her own team. Jenna led the Women’s 27s at The Championships rushing between her own games to theirs as she was intent on being in the sub box for every game. Experienced Mustangs Coach, Tim Gall, was called in last minute to assist with coaching at the event and used his skills and experience to assist the girls in getting over the line. 

The Women’s 27s also faced many challenges in the lead up to the event, the team looked drastically different from selection day to Day 1 of The Championships. The girls were forced into several changes in the lead up to the event, due to injury or personal commitments. However, the girls do not let this distract them from their goal of walking away from Coffs Harbour as National Champions. Their dedication and commitment were admirable and such frustrations only fuelled their drive to win.

Gabrielle Rice, Haylee Murphy-Evans, Rebecca Thomsen, Gretta Reid, Carla McConnell, Leilanie Pakoa, Casey Schweitzer, Jemma Seymour, Amanda Powell, Marlie Phillips, Stefanie Thomas, Deanne Panes and Alanah Beard took to the fields in Coffs Harbour lead by their co-captains Pia Galon and Jade Deaves. The girls had to get straight into the swing of things with three big games on Day 1 as they battled it out against the SRN Rebels, DEF Warriors and WA Tigers. The team had a strong win against the Warriors 6-1 but heard the siren blast at even scores against both the Rebels and Tigers. On Day 2, the draws kept coming as our Women's 27s added another to the tally against the Warriors 5-5. Keeping their heads high, the girls secured two more wins on Day 2 against the Rebels (3-2) and Tigers (8-5).

The Women’s 27s team had to bid Gabrielle Rice fair well at the end of Day 2 as she pulled up with a suspected ACL injury. In spite, Gabrielle returned to C.ex Stadium on Day 3 with crutches and a compression bandage, refusing to miss seeing the girls take on the Warriors in the Semi Final on Field 3. The girls were victorious with a 4-2 win, securing them a place in the Grand Final. The semi final was by far the girls’ strongest game, their unity, perseverance, and communication were outmatched against the Warriors. With only a three-hour turnaround, the team made their way to Field 2, blasting Beyonce’s ‘Texas Hold ‘Em’, pumping themselves up for the Grand Final. It was try-for-try nearly the whole game until the girls dug deep and broke away by two and became National Champions with a 7-5 victory over the WA Tigers! Player of the final was awarded to Marlie Phillips, whose speed from half was unparalleled for the entirety of the tournament. Stefanie Thomas was top try scorer of the tournament with eight tries under her belt, two tries more than second place. The coaches awarded players player to Jemma Seymour, whose leadership in the middle was impactful every game.

It was wholesome to see the Women’s 27s having ample support from partners, bubbas, and Beckham. Despite changes to personnel and coaches, the girls always remained committed to the team and the goal of being National Champions. BMTA is extremely proud of the Women’s 27s players and coaches, as should they be of each other, and we cannot wait to see them back at Coffs Harbour next year to, fingers crossed, be back-to-back National Champions.

Congratulations once again girls on your well-deserved victory!


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