Rugby taking hold in Mountain Home

Thursday, March 22, 2018
Camille Ochoa making a tackle with Phoenix Crossley in support against Rocky Mountain.
Photo by Scott Johnson

The sport of rugby is growing at a high rate of speed. In fact, it is the fastest growing sport in the state of Idaho and the United States with a five year growth percentage of 82.4 percent nationwide and the girls game is growing at an even faster rate of speed then the sport as a whole.

Rugby is being pushed hard as another team sport that is available for females to participate in. The addition of rugby teams at many colleges and the naming of rugby sevens as an Olympic event has also helped to recruit youth into the sport.

Rugby Idaho, an affiliate of USA Rugby, got their start in 2009 with four high school age clubs in the Treasure Valley. Just nine years later close to 40 teams are spread all over the state with programs from Kindergarten up to U20.

Jasmine Rodriguez making a tackle against Rocky Mountain.
Photo by Scott Johnson.

Since 2011 Mountain Home has had the Mongrels, a boys U18 team, that has seen its members go on and play for Idaho State University, Boise State University and the College of Idaho.

Mongrel Coach Hugh Stephens had always had it in the back of his mind to start helping to develope a girls team, but had never officially gotten the ball rolling. All of that changed when a new family moved to town.

Sydney Anderson had played rugby previously and approached the Parks and Recreation Department to see if there were any opportunities in the area for her to continue to participate. They put her in touch with the Mongrels and the rest is history. For the full story, pick up a copy of the Mountain Home News or click on this link to subscribe to the newspaper's online edition.

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