**Corrects spelling of Erin Krupa's first name.**
The Raleigh Venom made a leap from fourth to first on Sunday and won the USA Rugby Division II women's rugby club national championship in Houston, defeating the Pittsburgh Angels 12-0.
The Venom squeaked into the national semifinals as the No. 4 seed with their play on Saturday.
In Sunday morning's semifinal, the Venom started slowly but surged to defeat the Providence Rugby Football Club 31-5 and win a place in the title game, Venom representative Erin Krupa said.
The championship matchup pitted the Venom against a team that had defeated the Venom 17-15 on Saturday.
Both teams came out very aggressive, Krupa said. Raleigh scored first, going up 5-0 on a try by Lauren Buslinger early in the first half. Whitney Post's try, converted by Sarah Foster, gave Raleigh a 12-0 lead about 20 minutes into the game, and that ended up being the final score.
The Venom players were scheduled return to Raleigh on Monday.
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- Teri Boggess