The St. Thomas men’s Rugby Club experienced a surge in numbers this season which brought the roster to about 40 men.
The club became affiliated with St. Thomas within the last year, and the players believe that being associated with the university boosted their numbers.
Freshman Mike Mahoney is one of the new guys that has the numbers climbing.
“I played football and lacrosse in high school, so I liked physical sports,” Mahoney said. “I didn’t want to play football or lacrosse here, so I thought rugby would be a good alternative.”
Roger Bruggemeyer gets to coach the team for his first time this year and will bring rugby experience stemming way back from his early years.
“I started playing in 1974 when, at St. Thomas, I was on the very first St. Thomas team,” Bruggemeyer said. “I’ve been pretty much involved with the sport ever since.”
Club president and senior Tom Gallaher has been with the rugby team since his freshman year and believes the key to keeping the club afloat is strategic recruiting.
“We don’t want to recruit all seniors or all juniors because the turnover is quick, but the more we can get the word out to the freshmen, sophomores, that’s our kind of target every year,” Gallaher said.
Gallaher said he wanted the club to keep moving forward and to make the rugby club a success in years to come.
“We just hope people keep coming out; obviously our goal is not to be a one year club, but to make this a permanent club at St. Thomas,” Gallaher said. “I hope we get as many more people next year as we did this year and the year before.”
Olivia Cronin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.