Western Rugby Team Gets A Chatham-Kent Makeover

Erieau's Gabby Desbiens will join the Western Mustangs - Photo by Chris Marvell

Erieau’s Gabby Desbiens will join the Western Mustangs – Photo by Chris Marvell

The Western University Mustangs women’s rugby team will have a decidedly Chatham-Kent look this Fall as four local rugby players will suit up for Western.

Breanne Nicholas, Gabby Desbiens, Amber Nicholas, and Tegan Williams all cracked the Western Mustangs roster as freshman, and are considered top recruits by Western head coach Natascha Wesch.

“I am very excited to have such talented athletes joining the Mustang family this fall,” Wesch said in a Mustangs news release. “These young women will bring a great deal of athleticism and rugby skill to our program.”

Breanne Nicholas, who represented Team Canada’s Under 20 rugby team this summer, winning the Four Nations Cup in England, is excited to start a new phase in her career after leading the Blenheim District High School Bobcats to three consecutive Kent rugby championships.

“I’m looking forward to working with a committed, hardworking team that I can relate to and call my teammates and friends,” said Nicholas in the release. “When I visited the campus I felt at home. Western’s varsity athletic teams in the past have been quite successful and I’d love to be a part of that.”

She is joined by her sister Amber Nicholas, who will study Social Science, while Breanne studies Kinesiology. Amber Nicholas played for Team Ontario in the past, and was a Kent All-Star helping Blenheim to their Kent titles.

Fellow Blenheim Bobcat alumni Tegan Williams, who is another Kent All-Star and former Team Ontario representative, will also be studying the social sciences, and is excited to start the season with Western.

“I look forward to learning new techniques and skills as well as developing the skills that I already have,” Williams said on the Mustangs website. “I chose Western because it’s a great school that has a lot to offer academically, but it also has a great athletic program.”

Finally, Erieau resident, and UCC Lancers product Gabby Desbiens is the final local athlete who will suit up with the Western Mustangs this season. Desbiens, a Kent All-Star, who also suited up for the Southwest 7s team in recent years, shared her former Kent Havoc club teammates sentiments about starting the season with Western.

“I am very excited about coming to Western and playing for the varsity rugby team in the coming season,” Desbiens stated in the release. “This is a dream come true and I am undoubtedly blessed to have the opportunity. I have been blown away by the welcoming and accepting community that the Mustangs’ family have provided for me since the moment I stepped onto campus for the first time.”

The four Chatham-Kent athletes have all played for the Kent Havoc Rugby Football Club in Chatham, and come directly from the Kent high school system.

After their season opener versus Brock University was postponed, Western will now open their year on the road September 14 taking on powerhouse, Guelph Gryphons.

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