DEBUTANT Montana Ojeda embraced her family in tears.
Captain Michaela Leonard couldn't wipe the smile off her face while signing autographs.
Even if it meant standing in the cold, veteran Louise Burrows wanted to soak up every second.
No matter where you looked as the ACT Brumbies, headlined by Bomaderry's Harriet Elleman, were mobbed by family and friends hanging over the Seiffert Oval fence, there was a story to tell.
Stories which suggest a 30-5 Super W season-opening win over the Melbourne Rebels on Saturday meant more than just five competition points.
"You can see how much it means to the family of the ladies and they're friends. Having them here, it's awesome," Brumbies coach Dan Hawke said.
As if anyone needed a reminder of how much it meant after the Brumbies defended their line for the opening 23 minutes of the game, without setting a foot in Rebels territory the entire time.
Twice the Rebels were held up over the line, and countless times they were repelled by a desperate and willing Brumbies outfit in a stirring defensive display.
And as soon as they entered Melbourne's half on the back of outside centre Lillyann Mason-Spice's counterattack, they made the visitors pay with 25 unanswered points.
"It says a lot about their character," Hawke said.
"We've done a lot of work and talked about resilience for this whole preseason up to this point, saying 'these are the times you actually have to dig deep and enjoy those moments'.
"Defending for 23 minutes on your own try line, any team that can do that, willing to fight tooth and nail, they'll go deep in this competition.
"It was a massive plus. They've just attacked for 23 minutes and the first time we get in the 22, we score a try straight away.
"It's demoralising, it's hard to come back from that mentally, for us in the coaches box it was a massive relief as well."
Few things went right for the Rebels all day. They had arrived without playing kit, leaving venue officials to scramble in search of a replacement set. They hoped to raid the Queanbeyan Whites clubhouse next door. They found socks but jerseys were a bridge too far.
Contingency plans were hatched before Melbourne officials got their hands on a set of Easts jerseys - if nothing else, the red, blue and white at least made them look like Rebels.
They had little answer for a rampant Brumbies backline steered by flyhalf Ella Ryan - who came off with what Hawke hopes was just a cork late in the game - and centre pairing Siokapesi Palu and Mason-Spice.
"It's a great honour to throw this top on and, especially with a crowd like this, to promote women in sport and pave that way for the younger girls to come along," Mason-Spice said.
"The Brumbies group, we've got a lot to bring to the paddock and this is a great first hitout for the girls just to be able to gel. Hopefully in Coffs we just get bigger and better."
The Brumbies will join their five rival teams in Coffs Harbour next week to round out the competition.
They'll face the President's XV next Sunday [June 27] before facing the NSW Waratahs - who trounced Queensland 47-26 in their season opener - on June 30.
AT A GLANCE
Super W round one: ACT BRUMBIES 30 (Zali Waihape-Andrews, Siokapesi Palu, Talei Qalo Wilson, Halley Derera tries; Ella Ryan 2 conversions; Ryan 2 penalties) bt MELBOURNE REBELS 5 (Janita Kareta try) at Seiffert Oval.
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