The Weymouth High girls rugby program has just started, but coach Deidre Murphy is seeing growth already.
The Wildcats have played two games in their brief history and fell to Needham and Lincoln-Sudbury. The girls have yet to score a point, but there are positives that the team can take from both of those games.
“We had two and a half weeks of practice and no one had picked up a rugby ball before,” Murphy said. “The first half Needham scored on us and after we got up and running Needham could only score once on us. That was really good.
“They were not 100 percent sure of how to play the game, none of them had ever played the game before. They left as rugby players and they were super excited about playing the game. I was never more excited.”
Weymouth is one of the five girls teams in the state along with Algonquin, Belmont, L-S and Needham. The Wildcats are in their first year of competition.
Needham had played club rugby before they became a varsity program and Lincoln-Sudbury began its program in 2006.
Murphy realizes that the program is going to take time to come together.
“It will absolutely be one step at a time,” Murphy said. “We are starting with two games and then we have two weeks off before we play again. We will review what we did in those first two games and we will go from there.”
The Wildcats had over 20 players that try out for the team and the girls have different reasons why they decided to play.
“I heard about rugby from the other students from the school,” Weymouth captain Erin Roberts said. “I did not know what it was when we first started.
“I thought it was like football, but I was not sure. The more I talked about it, the more excited that I got. I was thinking that it was a lot different than the other sports that Weymouth has and I wanted to try it out.”
The other Weymouth captain learned about it from an older sibling.
“My sister (Jen) played the game at college (Bentley) and it looked interesting to play and I wanted to play it too,” Weymouth captain Nicole Meals said. “She did not teach me about the game, but I went to a couple of her games and it looked interesting.”
The result is positive and the girls have enjoyed playing the game. They liked the fact that there was another sport for them to pick from.
“I was looking to play with a group of girls, have a good time, get some exercise and (learn a) new sport,” Meals said. “I am having fun and I like it a lot.
“Even though I hurt myself (knee) I still get to be a team captain, I lead the team on the sideline and cheer them on.”
“I love it,” Roberts said. “There is so much to it, there are so my different rules. I found out how in-depth the game is.
“There are a lot of strategies that you had to pick up. There is so much more than tackling, but learning how to tackle and learning how to defend tackling and the scrum. I like it.”