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The 19th Beast of the East Tournament, hosted by Rugby Imports and the Providence RFC, took place in 2002 at the usual venue in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Then, there were four divisional championship (Today, five with a D3 Men’s event) in the largest college rugby tournament (fifteens) in the country.
Most of the sides historically have come from New England colleges.
Harvard won the DI Men’s Division, for the second time in three years. The Crimson defeated New Hampshire 39-15. Vassar won both the Men’s DII, and the Women’s DI divisions, the former winning 35-32 against Central Connecticut, and the latter, a shut out 26-0 against rival Radcliffe. Colby hung on 5-0 to beat Providence for the Women’s DII title.
Rugby came to Rhode Island in the spring of 1960 when Brown University fielded its first team.
Brown’s first ever points – a penalty kick – came off the boot of an English student who graduated Rugby School. The final game of that initial season was played on a football pitch without goal posts. The Rhode Island Rugby Football Federation was started in 1969.
The 36th Beast of the East Tournament is scheduled this year on April 13 and 14, 2019, at the Gardener Seveney Sports Complex in Portsmouth. Registration fees are $475 before February 1, and $525 after.