Feb 20, 2017
Saracens Women secure cup semi final spot
Saracens Women qualified for their second semi final this season after beating Waterloo Ladies away from home in the Senior Cup.
First half scores from Lauren Newman, Becky Roby, Garnet Mackinder and Nina Vistisen plus tries for Rosie Galligan, Ellie Gattlin, Georgie Gulliver and a second for Newman in the second period lead Sarries to a 44-26 win,
Waterloo were always going to be a tough challenge having dominated their Championship league and with Saracens forced into multiple changes, the home side struck first through Rebekah Wilson to open the scoring. In the first 20 minutes it was apparent that the long journey north was still in the players legs with Waterloo making the most of Sarries mistakes, resulting in a lot of pressure on the Premiership outfit. The home side definitely did not intend on making up the numbers and threw everything they had at the Premiership playoff contenders however immense tackling from Charlotte Barras, Becky Roby and the ever hardworking Kat Robinson kept Waterloo's ferocious attacks at bay.
Midway during the first period Sarries set piece began to stamp their dominance allowing fly half April Brown to hit her outside runners. Lauren Newman went over for Sarries first followed by Becky Roby and winger Garnet Mackinder who proved to be a constant threat all afternoon. Centre Nina Vistisen added another for the visitors before Waterloo had the final say of the half through the impressive Wilson, taking the score to 12-20.
Whatever was spoken about at the break spurred Saracens to life showing why they are contenders for silverware this season. Vistisen began to expose the outside space created by the hard working and strong carrying Rosie Galligan. Saracens were lifted by the return of Georgie Gulliver on her first appearance back from injury this season as she made an immediate impact from the bench, crossing for her own score and also her quick thinking from a penalty put Galligan over. Head coach Rob Cain will be encouraged by the energy and enthusiasm coming off the bench to help finish the job as replacement lock Ellie Gattlin found herself at the back of a strong driving maul to score and a fantastic offload from substitute Hannah Stobbs handed Newman her second & Saracens final try of the game. Waterloo fought to the final whistle with scores from Danielle Wiseman and debutant Sarah Beckett but in the end Sarries ability to find space at speed proved to be the difference & was enough to see them qualify for the Cup semi final where they take on familiar foes Wasps Ladies.
Speaking after the match Rob Cain said: "We've had lots of challenges this week and the players responded to all of them during our build up and also with today's performance. Today again highlighted our depth and everyone put in a positive hard working performance especially in the second half. We had ten changes from our match squad from last week and to be able to come away shows just how hard everyone throughout the whole club is working and how much inner competition we have. Waterloo didn't disappoint with what we were expecting from them and they showed us all game why they are so dominant in the Championship North league. Half time allowed us to refocus and our better shape, our increase in tempo and ability to create and find space allowed us to take the game away from them and to get the points we needed to make the knock outs."