33rd rugby tourney hits Daffin Park
Savannah and Charleston are occasionally considered rivals, but for women in the Lowcountry interested in playing serious rugby, the two cities are important allies.
For the past few years, women from the Savannah Shamrocks and Charleston Hurricanes rugby clubs have united to form a formidable team to compete in regional tournaments. Last year, the team played under the Charleston Hurricane banner and finished second in the South region of USA Rugby’s Division II club league.
That strong finish enabled the Charleston/Savannah combo side to advance to the Division II national championship tournament played in Houston, Texas. cheap nfl jerseys The Sham icanes won one of its two games in the national championship bracket and finished ninth in the country.
This weekend, the Shamrocks and Hurricanes are together again for the 33rd St. Patrick’s Day Rugby Tournament in Daffin Park. Several former full time players and new recruits were on the pitch at the same time to enjoy the camaraderie and competition. But the players were still enthusiastic about the tournament drawing a record 26 teams this year and the upward trend in the popularity of rugby among women.”I’ve been in Savannah for four years, and (the team) has gotten better every year,” said Beth Drzymalski, who played in Charleston before moving to Savannah. “Every practice it seems like more and more people are coming out. Rugby in general around the nation is getting more athletes, and there’s people in Savannah now from Savannah College of Art and Design and the military who may have played in high school or college.”
There have been female members of the Shamrocks throughout the club’s 30 year history, but until the past few years the ladies practiced with the gentlemen and rarely played organized games. Patrick’s Day Tournament is a welcome opportunity to showcase the women’s side and do a little marketing on behalf of women’s rugby.
“I think people sometimes have a misperception of women’s rugby and many women are afraid of playing rugby, because they think it’s just a violent game, but women’s play is more finesse,” said Boggs, a slender veteran rugger who stands slightly taller than five feet. “We mostly practice skills people like me are not going to make a big hit and injure anyone. We’re very lucky here to have this tournament so people who might be interested can see us play and see we’re passionate about it and want to see the game grow here.
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