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‘We’re champions’: Lady Bears complete rare double in women’s 13s competition

Saturday 13 May 2023 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Rugby league, Sports

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‘We’re champions’: Lady Bears complete rare double in women’s 13s competition
Lady Bears players and officials with the Cook Islands Rugby League 13s title. LOSIRENE LACANIVALU/23051291/23051296

They came, they saw, they conquered. Lady Bears were yesterday crowned the Cook Islands Rugby League 13s women’s champions for the first time after defeating Lady Panthers 28-16 in the final held at Nukupure Park in Ngatangiia.

The Bears, who won the minor premiership after finishing the preliminary competition on top, capped off their brilliant second round performance with the main trophy.

Lady Bears captain Stephanie Nooroa said the extra push from the village and supporters who came out in numbers to support them, was a key factor in the win.

Nooroa said they tried to keep their plays basic, supported each other and worked as a team.

“We knew it was not going to be an easy game and the Panthers were coming on hard for us, we just had to give an extra push. We were just hungry and wanted to bring the trophy home, it’s been a while,” she said.

Panthers co-captains Kiana Sword-Tua and Rima Browne congratulated the Bears saying it was a well-deserved win.

“We came in a bit too late in the game, putting our points on the board, so we gave the Bears too much to run with. We did not have time in our hands when we finally did get the ball in hand and over the try line,” Sword-Tua said.

Browne thanked the team for not giving up and said they fought until the end.

They thanked all their supporters.