The varsity girls emerged as the state runner-up. Photo provided by the Rainier Junior Rugby Club.

Plenty of success for Rainier rugby players

The Rainier Junior Rugby Club recently polished off an outstanding season, the best overall showing since the club's inception in 2008.

The Rainier Junior Rugby Club recently polished off an outstanding season, the best overall showing since the club’s inception in 2008.

The program includes students from Enumclaw, White River, Bonney Lake, Sumner and Orting.

Included among the program’s highlights were the following:

• the girls high school age team was once again runner-up in the state final, despite having a number of first year players on the squad.

• the program also created a girls team of seventh- and eighth-graders that – due to a lack of competition in Washington – competed in an Oregon league and wound up runner-up in that league.

• the fifth-sixth coed tackle team went undefeated and, according to coach Andy Ramsay, is providing some excellent talent for future years. “The two girls on the team in particular earned the respect of their teammates and opponents for their gritty and skillful play and thrived on the physical nature of rugby,” Ramsay wrote in an email.

• the seventh- and eighth-grade boys also finished the season also undefeated and clinched the state final at Central Washington University.

• the junior varsity team, made up of high school freshmen and sophomores, went undefeated and captured the state final.

• the varsity team ended the regular season with no losses and one tie and won the state final.

“We believe this is the first time in Washington youth rugby history that one club has swept the finals like this,” Ramsay wrote.

The club is taking a brief break and will resume preseason practices in late June for the “summer sevens” series, a simpler version of rugby that is ideal for new players. Summer play is “a great way for kids who may be in their offseason from other sports to stay active and learn a new sport,” Ramsay wrote.

For information about summer programs, contact Ramsay at a.s.ramsay@comcast.net or 253-330-6816. More about the club can be found at www.rainierjuniorrugby.com and the club can be found on Facebook at RainierRFC.

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