Some legends in this Furies throwback
The D.C. Furies celebrated their 40th anniversary last year, and 2019 marks the club’s 39th iteration of the D.C. Ruggerfest. The 15s tournament is for girls’ and women’s teams only, and will take over Rosecroft Raceway (Oxen Hill, Md.) on April 27-28.
“For the Furies, who both run and play in the tournament, Ruggerfest is a historically intense but invigorating weekend,” explained Ruggerfest co-chair Alex Hart. “You don’t show up at 4:30 a.m. to line fields unless you really, really love something, and we get dozens of players to do just that. Ruggerfest is a great way for us to meet lots of fellow ruggers, but it’s also a chance for us to focus on supporting one another, representing and living our club’s values, and reminding ourselves of why we got into this whole rugby thing in the first place.”
Last year close to 30 teams and 500 players from as far as the west coast descended on the nation’s capital, and similar numbers are expected this year. Hart indicated that high school, college, club and premier brackets will return. In 2018, North Bay, Towson, Old Girls (D.C. alumnae) and Glendale won their respective divisions. See results.
“We are also working on organizing a middle school round robin. It’s not confirmed yet, but we did it last year and it was really fun,” Hart noted. “There aren’t a ton of middle school teams in the area so we’re really grateful to be able to create an opportunity for those players to get game time.”
The 2019 edition has embraced “Ruggers in Space” as its tournament theme, especially inspiring considering that former USA Eagle Anne McClain is currently on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon, and the inclusion of former USA 7s Eagle Jessica Watkins in the most astronaut candidate class.
“The rugby community is a small one – and female athletes in general face this additional barrier of being taken seriously and competitively in any sport. This tournament is bettering the rugby community because it allows youth players to aspire to playing for premiere levels one day, and allows women in general to showcase their talents and strengths in an environment in which they’re appreciated, despite the actual outcome of any particular game,” noted Liz Linstrom, who’s been involved with Ruggerfest as a player, youth coach and now current Fury. ” I’m so excited for this year, and have my fingers crossed for good rugby and good weather – even though the best game I ever played at Ruggerfest was in about six inches of mud.”
For more information on the D.C. Ruggerfest, visit the tournament home page: https://ruggerfest.org.