The Rugby Girl’s Back to Back Victory

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Hana Wiessmann, Staff Writer

The State High Girl’s Rugby Club has been an incredibly successful sports club. Most notably, in the last few years the team won the Pennsylvania State Championships in 2016 and placed 6th at the National level. For the third time in the last three years the team will be competing in Nationals on May 18, 2018 in Tennessee. Joannah Skucek, senior, joined the girl’s rugby team her sophomore year, the same year the team won the championship. Currently, the girls rugby team is not best in the state, but Skucek has high hopes for the team’s future. “I would bet in the next year or so this team should be back to becoming the best in the state once everyone [the new players] learn the game,” Skucek said.

 

Stephanie Muller, senior, also joined the girls rugby team in her sophomore year and quickly fell in love with the sport. “The sport confused and intimidated me since it’s so physical. However, I grew in confidence throughout the season and fell in love with the support,” Muller said. Chloe Spencer, senior, also loves rugby and is sad she has to leave this year. “I’m sad to be graduating and leaving the team, but I’m also really excited to see some of the younger players continue to support each other and surpass everyone’s expectations,” Spencer said.

 

On May 5, 2018, The State High Girl’s Rugby Team faced off against a team from Moon Township. State High won the game, 40 to 0. Shortly after State High’s victory against Moon Township, the team faced off against Penn Legacy and won, 28 to 12. For Skueck, this was the first time she had played a full contact game since her hamstring injury a few weeks prior to the match. “While I played I mainly worried about my injury and tried not to re-injure it or make it worse,” Skueck said.

 

Rugby is a physically demanding game and has been known to cause quite a lot of injuries, for Muller, safety during a game is her priority. “My main concern is everyone’s safety since it is a very intense sport,” Muller said. For Spencer, as soon as the ball is kicked off she can only concentrate on the game at hand. “For the entirety of the game you only know what’s happening on the pitch; the rest of the world becomes irrelevant for a little while,” Spencer said.

 

Though the senior rugby girls will be leaving the following year, some are considering continuing their rugby career in college. “I have received a scholarship to play rugby at Lindenwood University,” Skueck said. Muller plans to attend Penn State University and is considering joining the girls rugby team. “I haven’t decided for sure if I will be playing in the fall. It’s a big commitment given they usually take national titles at the D1 Elite level,” Muller said. Spencer isn’t sure if she’ll continue playing or not, but did mention the strong impact the team had on her. “Seeing this team grow and become more and more of a family has been one of the best experiences of my life,” Spencer said.

 

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