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RUGBY

2017 – Now with Tackle!

rugby lineout2017 brought us our 5th season of non-contact, coed Tag play and our first to offer tackle rugby for both our 5th-6th and 7th-8th grade boys teams.  This summer was a ‘transition season’ as most of the boys had never played an organized tackle sport before. Our resolve was tested and the boys came through brilliantly.   The kids had a ton of fun – many stating they had more fun than they thought they would and parents were pleasantly surprised to discover it wasn’t in fact such a violent game.  Other than some heat issues and bruised pride, there were no significant injuries or concussions for any of our kids – this was a great growing experience for everyone that stuck through it.

A season’s worth of exciting photos, many taken by professional photographers, are on display here: Flickr: SYA Rugby

rugby34teammates

This picture, taken at the State Tournament, is one of my favorites.  This is how players are supposed to build strong bonds of friendship together.  This is the supportive feeling they should have as members of a team.  This is where they feel they have purpose and belong. This is rugby.  Moments like this should be valued over any win or trophy.   This is the true measure of a successful youth program.   Learn more about our 2017 State Tournament experience: click here

Thank you parents!

rugby girls

Thank you parents and volunteers for raising your hands and helping out.  Team managers (Ire, Nicole, Heather) were helping behind the scenes, hospitality tent efforts (Lemkes, Martins, Ninos, Dana & Richard Lewis, and many others), Eric Richmond for always being around to help, our board members (Craig, Katie, Jonny & Richard) for year-round efforts, and all of our coaches that spent a lot their personal time ensuring everyone had a great time, Your individual contributions combine in group efforts that keep this program going and provide a unique experience!

Thank you parents for taking time off this summer to ensure your kids arrived on time, had clothes & uniforms to wear, water bottles at the ready, and patiently waiting for schedules to be released.  I know several of you rushed back from vacation just so your kids could attend an event.   You’re the unsung, thankless heroes of youth sports.  Bravo parents!  Additionally, our coaches were humbled by the end-of-season gift – truly generous and considerate. Grazie!

champion of character rugbyRugby is a game of great character and SYA is lucky to be blessed with quite a few families and kids that have an over abundance of it!  Congratulations to Coach Tom Phipps, his sons Ian & Sam, and Nicole Mueller as each were nominated for the Fairfax County Champion of Character Award.  Coach Tom is an excellent representative of everything organizations should seek in their volunteers and SYA Rugby has been blessed to have him & his sons for being a part of ours.  Ian & Sam were instrumental as youth coaches in serving as mentors and excellent role models for their players and Nicole is a 2nd grader demonstrated her leadership both on and off the field, patiently taking new players under her wing as well as bonding with her teammates. Each of these individuals are excellent examples of what it means to be a rugby player and a valuable contributor to the rugby community.

rugby womens coachesFinally, a very special thank you to the coaches and volunteers that help in the program that don’t have kids of their own  participating.  This is an amazing sacrifice for which I am truly grateful.  Coaches Susie, Jenny, Veronica and Tim helped out with our tackle kids making sure they had a good time while emphasizing safe techniques.  Coaches Sam & Ian (both middle school boys) were able to match the high energy & short attention span of the 1st & 2nd graders – sometimes without another coach present.  Lucas decided tackle wasn’t for him but wanted to stay involved so became a referee … including officiating several games in the State Tournament.  I think this is a great way to keep youth involved and hope that we are able to offer these opportunities each season.

My deepest gratitude for everyone that helps make this program a great experience for our kids and their families.


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SYA Office Location: 5950 Centreville Crest Lane, Centreville, VA 20121 | SYA Mailing Address: Southwestern Youth Association, P.O. Box 471, Centreville, VA 20122 Phone: (703) 815-3362 | Fax: (703) 815-2180 | E-mail: admin@syayouthsports.org | Designed by GroupNet Solutions