Women's Rugby: Norwich shuts out Notre Dame (Ohio), 25-0

Denisse Zambon women's rugby action vs. Notre Dame College (Ohio)
Bill Croney/Northfield News

NORTHFIELD, Vt. - The Norwich University women's rugby team picked up a big 25-0 shutout victory over Notre Dame College (Ohio) on Saturday morning at the NU Dog River Rugby Pitch in National Intercollegiate Rugby Association (NIRA) action.

Sophomore flyhalf Caitlin Heale (Christchurch, New Zealand) scored two tries as the Cadets (4-2, 4-2 NIRA T1) avenged a loss to Notre Dame last year in Ohio and improved to 2-1 all-time against the Falcons.

Junior Sheila Decker (Saranac Lake, N.Y.) added a try, conversion and penalty kick to account for 10 points, while senior Denisse Zambon (Bronx, N.Y.) added another try to account for the Norwich offense on the day. 

After a back-and-forth first 20 minutes, Heale finally broke the scoring open with a try in the 23rd minute to put the Cadets up 5-0. Decker added a long penalty kick from 30 yards out in the 36th minute to put Norwich up 8-0 heading into halftime.

Heale added to the lead in the 51st minute with her second try of the day and her team-leading 12th try of the season. Decker converted after Heale's second try to push the lead to 15-0. Zambon added her seventh try of the season in the 54th minute with a long run for over 50 yards before touching down in the try zone.

Decker capped the scoring in the 63rd minute with the final try of the day to make it 25-0. 

Notre Dame (Ohio) fell to 2-5 overall and 1-2 in NIRA Tier 1 action. 

Norwich was ranked No. 6 in the NIRA Coaches Poll released earlier in the week and Notre Dame was eighth.

Norwich is off next weekend before closing the season with two road matches at Mount St. Mary's on Oct. 28 and Castleton on Nov. 5.