The Saint-Dizier Hammers women are 2024 French champions!

The Saint-Dizier Hammers women are 2024 French champions!
The Saint-Dizier Hammers women are 2024 French champions!

American football has been taking root in France for some time, including in Haute-Marne. Besides Chaumont, a great sensation has been created in the far north of the department.

The Saint-Dizier Hammers women took part in the French championship, commonly known as the Women’s Challenge. But unlike European team sports, the regular seasons from the United States do not operate in the same way at all.

“It’s a championship where the teams involved travel all over France to face the country’s clubs,” says, still on cloud nine, the captain and coach of the women’s Hammers, Amélie Verbiest. “There were seven teams participating in this Women’s Challenge,” which represented a long-distance duel.

The boards multiplied in sections of two 30-minute matches. And to go the distance, in a very intense championship, the agreement with the Chevaliers d’Orléans and the Falcons de Villeurbane was more than welcome.

The Saint-Dizier Hammers secured the most important points in small matches, where their rivals undoubtedly lost a few feathers. Then, in the ultimate confrontation, the Bragardes and their agreement counterparts finally faced their ultimate bulwark: the Lionesses of Bordeaux.

After having already had to endure a match before the grand final, Saint-Dizier already had lead in its legs, facing the Girondines who were determined to make them bite the dust.

Hammers points victory

“It was really a very, very physically complicated match, especially since our opponents really gave everything to steal the title from us,” says Amélie Verbiest. The Lionesses delivered two “touch downs” (the equivalent of a rugby try) to the Hammers, who only converted one. But the difference had already been made throughout the season: the greater consistency of the Bragardes allowed them to become champions of France, despite the victory of the Bordelaises (12-7).

This team, although having benefited from the agreement with Orléans and Villeurbane, was initially not cut out to seek a title of this magnitude. Which represents not only a great achievement, but also great publicity for a sport which is only beginning to become more popular in the department, including in Chaumont with the Phenix.

“There are more and more clubs setting up women’s teams in France,” relates the captain, who also sends a clear, clear and precise message: “given the raising of the level, we will have to is recruiting! »

Bastien Dauby

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