Category: Women’s 1st XV News

Hilljills Triumph in Murrayfield Cup Final

Hilljills 26-23 Wandies

The final game in the BT Womens Premier League in January had seen these two Clubs pitted against each other on the back pitch at Murrayfield and , on that occasion, “Wandies” had triumphed in a hard fought game by eighteen points to twelve. Fast forward to April and the BT finals on the main pitch at Murrayfield, and the same two Clubs contested the final of the Sarah Beaney Cup with Hills Ladies the victors this time, edging their close rivals by three goals and one try to two goals and three penalty goals.

Classically it was a game of “two halves” with the Glasgow visitors, after a very shaky opening spell in which their rivals raced to a ten points lead in seventeen minutes, settling down with their two main strike runners, their centre pairing Abi Evans and Hannah Smith, proving far too elusive, quick witted and strong for a very porous Edinburgh defence. Hannah Smith ran in the first try from some fifty metres on a mazy route and the second was a touch down from Abi Evans who sprinted clear from some forty metres. Stand off Ally Cook converted both but just failed
with her third kick following another burst of pace and touch down from Abi Evans. Murrayfield chipped away at Hills with another Lisa Martin penalty, but the first half concluded with the sad sight of winger Sarah Smith being stretchered off with a head injury ; and the scoreboard showing the match finely poised at nineteen points to thirteen in favour of the HillJills.

The second forty minutes was altogether a much dourer affair than the first with Wandies dominating territorially and also enjoying the greater share of possession, but finding the Hills defence impregnable. It took Murrayfield some twenty five minutes to break through far out to the right and this time Sarah Nelson kicked the conversion, taking Murrayfield one point ahead.

The margin was increased to four when Lisa Martin, revisiting recent Broadwood Stadium heroics, kicked a penalty goal from some thirty two metres. But Hilljills did not panic with stand off Ally Cook being far from traumatised and showing fine footballing skills to take the game back into the Edinburgh half. Eventually Hills went through some phased plays to create sufficient space for Hannah Smith to dash through the Wandies ranks once more to score to the side of the posts. Ally Cook converted pushing her team some three points ahead with just over three minutes left to play. The final honours were left to Man of the Match , Hannah Smith to boot the ball out of the playing area and bring up no side. The celebrations were then unconfined with players, replacements and coaches, Dean Kelbrick and Graeme Blackhall, all joining in.

This was a fine effort from all the HillJills squad; it would have been all too easy for them to have crumbled after the opening onslaught, but they stuck to it well and emerged worthy winners . It is always invidious to pick out individuals in what was a cohesive team performance but Jade Konkel, who has enjoyed better days with her hands, was an exocet in attack sometimes taking four defenders to halt her ; Mairi McDonald was sharp throughout at scrum half providing an excellent service and Louise McMillan captained the side well and proved a more than useful source of line out ball.

WELL DONE HILLS LADIES AND COACHING STAFF.

Report by : Bernie “the Bunnet” Mitchell
Read also:
SRU Match Report
Article in the Herald Scotland
Article in The Scotman

Junior HillJills Secure Cup Final Place at Murrayfield

Biggar RFC welcomed both a full Hillhead u18XV squad and the early summer sunshine to Hartree Mill.
As expected the opening salvos were fired in uncompromising fashion and after sustained pressure in the Hills 22 area Biggar were first to trouble the scorers with a converted try. An immediate response was required by Jills which came moments later with fine converted try of their own.


The all important battle of the gain line once again proved vital and another period of sustained pressure saw Biggar dominate that area of the game and capitalise on a stretched Jills defence to score twice in succession with two unconverted tries! Hills again responded with a converted try of there own making it 17-12 at the break to the host side.
After the break a series of probing attacking movements nearly saw the home side extend their lead but they were denied by some very good Jills defence but in the end it was the hosts who scored first to extend there lead with a fine converted try to take the scores to 24-12. The home side extended their lead again moments later with a another try to take the sore to 29-12 that would be the final time Biggar put points on the board.
After a regroup Jills upped the ante and scored another 3 converted tries to end the match as 33-29 victors, bagging a place in the final at Murrayfield on April 29th against Stirling county.
Many thanks to the referee on the day without which the encounter would not have been possible and to the Management and Staff at Biggar RFC for their fantastic hospitality and wonderful facilities.

Hills Player of the Match with a 4 try stunner – Helen Frater

Try scorers –
Helen Frater 4
Ellie Burr – 1
Converted Mel Grant – 4

Report by Ritchie Bruce

Hills Senior Women Win Premier Development Cup

Hilljills beat Stewartry Sirens 53-24 in the Premier Development Cup Final played at Greenlaw, Castle Douglas. Player of the match was Elis Martin on her first game for Hills seniors.

Try scorers were as follows: Hannah Smith (5), Kirstin Daly (2), Stella Kyalikunda (1) and Abi Evans (1). Conversions by Mairi McDonald.

Squad: Debbie Falconer, Stella Kyalikunda, Fiona Dorman, Kirsty Openshaw, Siobhan McMillan, Elis Martin, Kirsty Reid, Hannah Telling, Sarah Smith, Mairi McDonald, Lizzie Willis, Hannah Smith, Kirstin Daly, Aimee Watson, Abi Evans, Eilidh Simpson, Georgie Keys, Mallory van Wyngaarden, Erin Foley.

Next match for the HillJills is against Cartha next weekend in the quarter final of the Sarah Beaney Cup.

Hilljills and Mini-Hilljills in Action

Hills ladies and junior girls (U18s and U15s) were all in action yesterday, Sunday 5th March.

Hills ladies played Murrayfield Wanderers at home to record a 63-10 win in the semi final of the Premier Development Cup. Player of the match was Kirsty Reid with two tries whilst other Hills scorers were Hannah Smith (4), Mairi McDonald (3), Aimee Watson (1), Hannah Telling (1) and Ally Cook with the conversions.

Hills play the winner of Ayr and Stewartry in the Final which is scheduled for the 19th March.
The game was pictured by Fiona, you will find more of her very good shots here.

Hills squad: Siobhan McMillan, Stella Kyalikunda, Fiona Reardon, Kirsty Openshaw, Jenny Johnston, Kirsty McConnell, Kirsty Reid, Hannah Telling, Sarah Smith, Ally Cook, Lizzie Willis, Hannah Smith, Kirstin Daly, Aimee Watson, Mairi McDonald, Debbie Falconer, Georgie Keys, AnnMarie Franz, Caitlyn Haldane.

Meanwhile at Bridgehaugh, Hills under 18s lost to Stirling County 40-12 in the West League whilst the under 15s played a friendly. Judging by the smiles and the mud, a good day of rugby was had by all!


Featured picture by Lesley Robertson
Above Pictures by Fiona and Jade
Report by Heather

Kirsty Receives Warriors Tickets

Continuing on the theme of rewarding players for their effort and achievements, Kirsty McConnell work was in the spotlight last week, and is pictured receiving two tickets for Saturday’s Warriors gamer against the Dragons from the club’s head of Rugby, Bernie Mitchell.

Kirsty has a proud family background in the game : her Dad, the “Serge”, was an outstanding back row forward for the Hills and Mum, Christine, was a flying winger for the Hills ladies. Her brother Murray also currently plays professionally for Nottingham.

Kirsty noted : “Yeah, it’s really great to play here at Hills. I get great encouragement particularly when everyone tells me I am a much better player than either my Mum or Dad were”

Scotland Women vs France Women 6N 11th February 2017

Everyone at Hughenden is delighted to note the recall of Lana Skeldon (@skeldonlana) to the squad of twenty three for the 6 Nations game at La Rochelle this Saturday. All her friends at Hills wish her all the best for her return to the front row and hope all her team mates, including Jade, Heather, Lindsey, Louise and Jemma, can produce their first 6 Nations win.

Lana in action for Scotland
Women’s Six Nations, Wales vs Scotland, Neath, 14/2/2016

Scotland Women vs Ireland Women – Tonight 18.35 at Broadwood

On behalf of everyone at Hughenden – sponsors, men, women , and juniors/development squad
players and non playing members and all friends – can we take this opportunity to wish our own
players the best of luck in their game against Ireland this Friday 3rd February.

So best wishes to Hilljill’s finest LINDSEY, LOUISE, JADE, HEATHER and JEMMA

Remember Cumbernauld is not miles away. Let’s try to get there and add our support !!

If you can’t make it, live coverage on BCC Live , on RTE and the 6 Nations YouTube/Facebook page

More insight on Hillhead Jordanhill Women RFC facebook page, and related articles in WorldRugby magazine and in Scrum Magazine

Remember Cumbernauld is not miles away. Let’s try to get there and add our support !!

If you can’t make it, live coverage on BCC Live , on RTE and the 6 Nations YouTube/Facebook page

Also relevant articles in WorldRugby magazine and in Scrum Magazine

Hills Narrowly Lose Out in League Title Decider

Murrayfield Wanderers 18 Hillhead/Jordanhill 12

In a very closely fought game watched by a sizeable crowd on the back 4G pitch at Murrayfield on Sunday, Hills lost the BT Women’s Premier League title decider by three tries (plus a penalty) to two (one converted).

In a match that was a fantastic advert for the women’s game in Scotland (televised highlights will be shown on BBC Alba- details TBC), the two top teams in the League produced some excellent running rugby coupled with some outstanding defence and set piece work.

In what might be a unique occurrence for women’s rugby in Scotland in a match at this level, Hills fielded three sets of sisters in the game: the Smiths (Lindsey and Sarah); the McMillans (Louise and Siobhan) and the Haldanes (Caitlyn and Erin). Indeed a small piece of history and one in which they can all be immensely proud.

Teams and full match report: SRU match report

Photos: Rugby People ; Craig Watson and SNS

Both teams will be working hard to prepare for the Sarah Beaney Cup with the quarter finals taking place on the 26th March. The Premier Development Cup (for all Premier teams running throughout February and March) starts on February 5th- full fixtures at www.scottishrugby.org

Hills Clinch Bonus Point To Top League Table

Hillhead/Jordanhill 27 Murrayfield Wanderers 3

This was a very entertaining top of the table clash watched by a crowd of over one hundred who were treated to some engrossing rugby for the full eighty minutes.

Although the visitors opened the scoring with a short range well struck penalty goal from Lisa Martin, that was the last time they bothered the score board, such was the determination of the Hills defence to keep them out and the ball winning capabilities of the home forwards and some excellent finishing from the backs.

The strike running of centres Hannah Smith and Abi Evans combined with the powerfully quick bursts of Andrea Gaffney on the left wing proved a potent combination with Hills scoring two unconverted tries before the half time whistle. With the score only 10-3 in Hills favour at this point, the match was still in the balance. The introduction, however, of replacement forward Jade Konkel, on her return from injury, combined with some outstanding high energy attacking team play, swung the balance. Hills continued to press and ran in a further three tries in the second half to secure the important bonus point win to take them to the top of the table by a point with three matches to go.

The unexpected pairing of Sarah Smith and Louise McMillan at 9/10 proved itself successful with an efficient mix of feeding to the Hilljills powerful centres and strong running from the Scotland flanker. Jade’s forty minutes of play will be a welcome boost for not only the Hills squad but also the national squad.

Hills last league game before the Christmas break is at home this Saturday 17th December- 12.30pm KO against Stewartry Sirens.
Match Report by Bernie Mitchell
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Hillhead/Jordanhill 27 Murrayfield Wanderers 3

Scorers:
Hillhead/Jordanhill: Tries-Abi Evans (3), Hannah Smith (2) Conversions: Sarah Smith (1)
Murrayfield Wanderers: Penalty- Lisa Martin (1)

Hills Squad:
Maelle Dotou, Aimee Watson, Abi Evans, Hannah Smith, Andrea Gaffney, Louise McMillan (c), Sarah Smith, Heather Lockhart, Stella Kyalikunda, Lindsey Smith, Lauren Hagan, Sammy Beal, Hannah Telling, Kirsty Reid, Jemma Forsyth, Fiona Dorman, Fiona Reardon, Jade Konkel, Kirstin Daly, Hazel Bielinski 

Hills Player of the Match: Jemma Forsyth
Murrayfield Wanderers Player of the Match: Abi Evans

Featured Photo by Rugby People /@CraigWatsonpix: Abi Evans and Hannah Smith
Plenty more excellent pictures from the game here