Rugby team begins season
By Leah Frank
Ever have the urge to get down in the dirt and tackle a woman three times your
size? Oberlins women rugby players know the feeling.
Forty women comprise the women's rugby team, ranging from first-years to graduating seniors.
In the wintery months, this club sport team practices in Jones Field House twice a week at 11:00
p.m. Cries of with you! ball out! pop! and ruck!
reverberate across the turf until 12:30 a.m.
I'm really excited for this season. The energy from last season carried over, so obviously
we're going to ruck Ohio till the break of dawn, last season's captain sophomore April Gentile-Miserandino
A fifteen-person team is divided into forwards, or the scrum, and backs, or the line.
The eight people in the scrum vie with the other team to get the ball. The scrum-half passes the
ball out to the line so the lineys can run the ball up the field to score tries. In
general, scrummies are large and strong while lineys are quick and agile.
I love rugby because the sport itself is built for every type of person, first-year
Daviel Shy said.
The game is played as somewhat of a combination of football and soccer. But in reality, it is its
own entity. Unlike any other sport, the only way to pass is backwards. A forward pass or a "knock
on" is called as a penalty.
But more than just a sport, rugby is a way for women to physically release energy.
Where else in society can women get out their aggression? veteran rugger Sage Gray
The constant contact, tackling, falling, rucking, and mauling, keeps the adrenaline rushing throughout
entire 40-minute halves.
Rugby, some say, can also be an anti-depressant.
No matter how you're feeling, whether it's awesome or really upset, rugby just makes everything
better, first-year Rachel Lindy said. The awesome becomes more awesome and the sad
just goes away.
Outside of practices and games, the rugby players remain close. The team meets at fourth meal and
cheers over bowls of oatmeal and French toast sticks. A few members of the team participate in
drag events together as the Back Alley Boys.
Many players meet at the gym to work out on days without practice. The intimacy among the players
enhances their ability to play well together as a team.
This intimacy extends as well to the opposing teams. Traditionally, after each game, the rugby
team serves pizza to the visiting team.
[In] what other sport do you get to party with the other team afterwards? junior Andi
These passionate women do more than just play rugby they live rugby.
Elana Harris sums up everyone's infatuation.
You can't explain what you love, she said.
For more information, visit www.oberlin.edu/~womrugby. Watch the first home game March 15 at noon
at north field.
First-year Leah Frank is a member of the womens rugby team.