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One of the most successful girls clubs in the east is the Doylestown Junior Girls Club , which enjoyed a banner season. A U-19 team hailing from southeastern Pennsylvania, the club finished 2014 as state champions in both 15’s and 7’s. These wins follow another 7’s championship by the team in 2013.
Doylestown’s Head Coach Stacy Mancuso commented, “The girls had more determination then I had seen in previous years and made it their personal goal to walk away with a state title. At the very first practice of last season the captains asked, ‘What do we need to do to win?’ My answer was, ‘Hard-work, beginning right now,’ and they gave me 100% at every practice and in every game.”
Further success came at the end of the year, when five DRJC team members and Mancuso were elected part of the Pennsylvania All State Team in the New York RFC’s 7’s Thanksgiving weekend Tournament. The Penn Club ultimately placed 3rd out of 16 teams in the semi-finals, losing to tournament champion Quebec U-19 Nationals.
A typical DJRC Girls preseason starts off in January with indoor conditioning practices three times a week. The training ramps up in March when workouts are taken outside for the 15’s season that lasts through May. The 7’s season then takes place from September through November. Although it is not required to play in both seasons, most players do.
Sophie Pyrz, a co-captain, explained, “The team has completely changed from last year. We graduated eight seniors [and lost one who relocated to England], most of whom were starters. Our team reloaded with new girls who carry a lot of potential talent.” Pyrz also noted, “We recruit by getting people in our school to play and people just hearing about rugby and wanting to give it a try. Some people just want to check out what the sport is all about, and when they come try it they fall in love with it.”
The DJRC Girls take a biennial trip to the United Kingdom. The next one will be in April 2016, when the team will experience rugby competition on an international level.
Another integral part of membership in the DJRC Girls, is the team’s association with the Doylestown RFC A much larger organization, the Football Club has multiple teams that include opportunities for girls, women, boys and men. Members from the various teams join together for a Memorial Day festival, which includes giving out teammate awards. In 2015 Doylestown will introduce its first U-13 rugby girls club.
DJRC Girl’s co-captain Megan Lynott hoped that, “It will allow young girls to come out and start the game with girls their own age. It also allows girls rugby to grow in Pennsylvania, and for young girls to learn the game at an earlier age.”
The Doylestown Junior Girls Club’s 2015 pre-season began this past January 4, 2015. The club welcomes new players at any point throughout the year. Contact Coach Mancuso for more details at [email protected].