Despite winning only one league match last season, the Rainier Plateau Junior Rugby girls team made its way into the state championship game.
The girls finished in third place in league losing only two games all season.
“Despite this success,” club founder and girls coach Andy Ramsay said. “We are eager to continue to recruit new players.”
A number of players were selected to the Washington state all-star squad, Ramsay said. Later this summer, the all-star squad will play in a tournament against other teams from across the country.
Later this month, captain Hannah Lewandowski was invited to attend the USA Rugby National Camp for Woman’s All-Americans in Colorado.
Lewandowski is a junior at White River High School.
This year the rugby club added a new team of boys under 15 years old. Ramsay said the team proved “to be a huge success.”
The team is made up of eighth graders and freshman. The boys earned third place in the league and look to compete in the state semi finals Saturday in Ferndale.
The team of older boys, Ramsay said, faced some challenges this season.
It was tough for the team to face experienced competition and integrate new players at the same time, he said.
“Maintaining a large enough squad to compensate for injuries and unavailability was a problem and left little room for development of new players who ended up playing almost the entire match on many occasions,” Ramsay said.
He added that next season, they will look at the lessons learned from this year and make adjustments where needed.
This season may be over but the club includes a seven a side season throughout the summer as opposed to 15 a side.
Ramsay said the seven a side is much easier to understand and is ideal for new players who want to see what rugby is all about.
The new season will start in early June, he said, and will involve one to two evening practices a week with a total of four tournaments throughout.
The ideal players are girls ages 14 to 19 and boys 13 to 18.
For more information, visit the Rainier Plateau Junior Rugby’s website.