By Dianne Miranda, October 30 2023—
The University of Calgary Dinos women’s rugby team’s season came to a close on Oct. 5, 2023, in a game against the University of Alberta under the lights of McMahon Stadium.
Six players took to the field and were honoured by their team and the audience at the end of their last game of the regular season as senior Dinos— Ashlynn Smith, Aspen Dorn, Elizabeth Feddema, Erin Geddie, Melody Kivia and Sofia Brussoni.
Geddie, who has been a part of the wrestling team since 2017 and the rugby team since 2018, states that it has been a full-circle moment for her.
“When I first joined the team, I was asked by [Head Coach] because I knew a girl in the wrestling team who did both sports. They were looking for someone [who played] my position, so I walked into the team without any expectations at all whatsoever. Maybe I’ll play, maybe I won’t. After my first couple of practices, they asked if I wanted to be on the roster for our first game of the season.”
“I feel like I went from someone who wrestled and did rugby on the side to becoming an actual rugby player, as me and [Assistant Coach] like to joke about,” Geddie said.
Geddie commented that her favourite part of the season was seeing how involved everyone in the team was and being together with her teammates.
“I think this was one of the best years we have had in terms of building our team culture, and everyone really knowing what they wanted to get out of the season. Although it wasn’t a successful season in terms of our win record, I think that it was a big stepping stone in building that team chemistry and team culture moving forward,” she said.
Geddie talks about the weight of playing under the lights of McMahon Stadium especially since she played her first rugby game, out in the back of the university.
“To be able to finish on that note, and finish with a hard-fought performance in front of a crowd, my dad got to come to watch and see me play my last university game, so just knowing that I had all of my people there in the audience showing up to round out my final season, it meant the world,” Geddie said. “Being able to hug all of my teammates after playing under the lights in McMahon, is a different feeling, for sure.”
Geddie will be graduating this academic year in April. She expressed her excitement as she stated that she is looking into pursuing a career in firefighting.
“[This] will definitely be a helpful feat to have going into such a physically demanding job. And ideally the next five to ten years, I would like to work my way towards being on a national team if possible or potentially playing overseas.”
Geddie shares that she joined the Dinos rugby team not knowing what to expect. She has come out of it with an additional family and so many different people whom she has come to love and who have come to love her over the years. They have become her support system and network to lean back on hard or tough times.
“The Dinos have helped shape me into who I am and it definitely is a little emotional to talk about because it has been six great years with this team.”
Geddie would like to extend the message to her teammates, juniors and any aspiring Dinos that if you are someone who is afraid to take the extra step, do it.
“I think everyone is always afraid to ask themselves, ‘What if it turns out bad?’, ‘What if this happens?’. I think you need to ask yourself better than what you can imagine. This is one of my favourite quotes that I have held going forward and moving through the last couple of years.”
With the conclusion of the regular season, the Dinos now shift their focus and attention to the rugby 7s season, set to take place this upcoming spring. For updates, visit the Go Dinos website or download the Go Dinos app.