A five-try first half surged the Woden Valley Rams past the Tuggeranong Bushrangers 28-14 in the opening round of the Katrina Fanning Shield, however it came at a cost with Donelle O'Donnell sent to hospital.
Woden fullback Georgia Willey ran wild, scoring two tries in the first half, including when she burst through a hole and ran 60 metres to plant the ball under the uprights.
The first three tries for the visitors came through the left-side attack as mismatches and overlaps were apparent each time they shifted the ball to that edge.
The Rams' major hurdle came just two minutes into the game when O'Donnell left the ground with a broken wrist and did not return to the contest.
Coach Grace Guthrie confirmed after the match that she had to be taken to the hospital due to the injury. Guthrie was pleased with how her side performed despite the setback.
"Our combinations, talking through our halves mainly, throughout the week we were working on isolating each side and working together, and I think that's really shown today," she said.
The best try of the day came from Rams halfback Makayla Morris who scored directly from a scrum on the 50-metre line after showing a dummy to the defence and running through the gap.
Trailing 24-0 at the break, the Bushrangers showed heart to turn up the intensity in the second half.
"They did absolutely everything we could have asked from them [in that second-half]. They're really a good bunch of girls," Tuggeranong coach Sally Ford said of her players' resiliency to bounce back.
"A few of them have never played before - they haven't actually been on a tackle field before. There's a lot of new girls that haven't played together."
The Bushrangers scored two quick tries in the second term thanks to defensive pressure, before a consolation try in the final minutes after Tuggeranong 17-year-old Emily Briggs snuck over from dummy-half on the last tackle.
Woden will look to continue their good start to the season next week when they face the Harden Warhawks in their home opener. Meanwhile, the Bushrangers will search for their first win when they visit the Yass Magpies.
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