Women’s Rugby is a very different team from last year. Coming off of their first Division II win, a plate from the spring 7s tournament and a dedicated group of coaches and players, the team has a lot to look forward to this season. Last season, four of those players were named to the All-Conference Team or All-Conference Second Team. One player was named to the All-Conference Second Team for the Spring 7s Tournament. They are constantly pushing themselves and each other to get better, and the results are showing.
So far this season, the team sits at 2-1 in the league. The wins came against UMASS Lowell (67-0) and Southern Connecticut State University (58-0), while the loss was to the hands of perennial powerhouse Stonehill (62-7). Aside from fielding an A-side team, they have been playing a B-side team. By fielding both an A-side and B-side team, every girl has a chance to play. Several B-side teams have played A-side teams and done well. Usually, the B-side team does not play the same team. While the A-side team played UMASS Lowell, the B-side played Salve Regina. Against Salve Regina, the B-side team tied 0-0. However, like Captain Haley Mount said, “This is extremely impressive seeing as a majority of the girls who were wearing a St. As jersey had never played a minute of rugby before.” Head Coach Jesse Martineau said, “the hardest thing as a coach is convincing the girls that they can compete against bigger schools and at the Division II level. They’re talented and they work hard.”
Aside from rugby, the team is very active in the school community. Several players are Resident Assistants or EMTS, and many girls volunteer individually. Whenever there is a service event on campus, such as the Christmas Fair, Valentine’s Day Dance, or dodgeball, they always try and go and give back. Many players on the team participate in Service and Solidarity trips, and most recently, nine girls participated in Road For Hope. Haley said, “our team really prides ourselves on how active we are on and off campus and that is something we hope never to lose”.
This weekend, the team is hosting their very first Diabetes Awareness Game. Both the coaches and the players are very excited for this particular game. Not only is the game against Merrimack, but this game is personal for the girls on the team. Haley said, “Diabetes is something that hits close to home with our team and we decided that we wanted to start raising awareness about the disease”. Coach Jesse echoed that statement, saying, “the team is really looking forward to the Diabetes Awareness Game and raising awareness.” The team will be selling t-shirts and ribbons and the money will be going to JDRF'S BIONIC PANCREAS PROJECT. Make sure you come out and support the team as the raise awareness for Diabetes and host Merrimack at 3PM on the practice field.
On October 25th, Women’s Rugby will play host to Holy Cross at 5PM. This will be the senior game, and the team will be celebrating. Coach Jesse said, “this is an awesome senior class. They are responsible for taking a team with only a few girls to being the team with the most registered active players in the conference.” There are 11 seniors that the team will recognize at the game. We asked Haley what advice she would give new players, and even people considering playing rugby. She said, “Rugby is what you make of it. The more you put into it the more you get out of it. All the seniors have put in hours of hard work, sweat, laughter, tears, some blood from time to time, and most importantly love. In return, rugby has given me a family I will always have and memories I will never forget. My time here at St. As would not have been the same if it wasn't for rugby and when I graduate my rugby memories, both on and off the field, will be some of the first memories I remember.”
For the team’s hard work both on and off the field, the Student Government Association would like to recognize Women’s Rugby as our Team of the Week. Congratulations, ladies! Best of luck with the remainder of the season!
To stay up to date with Women’s Rugby, you can follow them on Twitter @SACWomensRugby
By: Dominique Del Prete '15