Both Colorado College rugby teams had busy weekends, with the men’s team traveling to New Mexico to take on New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology and the CC Cutthroat rugby team taking on Western University at home.
The men’s team played a match this past weekend against N.M. Tech in Socorro, N.M. This was the first game played against N.M. Tech in the team’s history, as this year the Tigers transitioned into the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO).
Unfortunately, due to a large number of injuries sustained in a prior game against New Mexico Highlands University, CC was forced to play a friendly match and mix in their players with those of N.M. Tech. Cian McGillicuddy ’20 lamented the injuries suffered but was happy with how the team turned out for the game. “It was a successful game and a lot of freshmen got to play, which was good,” McGillicuddy said. “Rugby is a sport where it’s tough and new guys often haven’t played before, so their first season they learn a lot.”
With a large graduating class last year and a significant injury presence on the team, the emphasis last weekend was on younger players stepping up. “Charlie Lynch [’22] scored, Garrett Pilgrim [’22] as well.” McGillicuddy ’20 said. “Our main goal this year was to build a base on the team and get guys involved, and it’s beginning to show, as the freshmen are playing really well.”
The men’s rugby team will finish out the remainder of their 15’s season in February against the University of Denver before transitioning into their 7’s season. The goal for the team is to reach the national qualifier tournament in Las Vegas that begins in early March.
Over the same weekend, the CC Cutthroat rugby team delivered a dominating performance over Western University. Despite an end score of 55-5, Abby Williams ’20 gave credit to their opponents. “It was a really tough and physical game because they showed up to play,” Williams said. “We ended up winning because we were able to put a lot of pressure on them and hold them up on defense.”
The whole team performed extremely well against Western, but some exceptional performers emerged from the match. “As always, our team captains Rachel Fitch [’19] and Sophie Redpath [’19] stood out.” Williams said. “Fitch really can’t be stopped and was a force on offense and made the majority of tackles on defense.”
The Cutthroat rugby team has had a successful season so far; next weekend, the team will travel to Wayne, Neb. for the National Small College Rugby Organization regionals for the 15’s season. Should the team win regionals, the National Tournament in Atlanta will await. However, despite many triumphs this year, the team remains focused on the big picture. “As a team, we work hard to be competitive,” Williams said. “I think, though, the focus on our team is not as much about how far we make it into playoffs but more about how best we can build community through rugby and foster love of the game.”
The Cutthroat rugby team has very palpable team spirit, something that Williams adamantly found to be more important than the overall success of the program. “We really enjoy spending time together and working hard,” Williams said. “But we also just enjoy hanging out and enjoying each other’s company and support.”
Following regionals, the Cutthroat rugby team will pick up their 7’s season and look to build upon the success they have had this season.