The women’s rugby team of Southern Oregon University has a young history as it just finished its second year of being an official club. The success of the club as well as its existence could not have happened if it was not for one young woman’s love for the sport of rugby.
Tiffany Reardon first started playing rugby when she was a freshman in high school back in 2006.
“I honestly signed up as soon as I found out that it was full contact without pads” says Reardon.
From the first time she stepped on the pitch, rugby has become a very important part of her life as she continues to play throughout her college career.
“I honestly love everything about rugby. It allows you to challenge yourself as well as your teammates to be the best you can be and it forces you to make your own decisions on the fly. It’s like a brutal game of chess” explains Reardon.
Originally from the Portland area, Reardon came to Southern Oregon in 2010 only to be disappointed with the fact that there was no women’s rugby team. Determined to continue her love for rugby she found any way she could to be around the sport.
“I started holding mini practices for my own sanity really, and then in the fall I did the same thing. One day there were 20 plus girls at practice so I figured we should probably look into funding”
After some help from other teammates along with the Recreation Coordinator at Southern Oregon, women’s rugby became an established club in November of 2011.
As president of the women’s rugby team, Reardon has had the opportunity of seeing the team improve from their first year and only sees good things coming in the future.
“We have made huge strides since last year, not just our skill but the number of teams we are able to play. I only see that advancing further as the seasons continue,” says Reardon, “A huge part of this season was the leadership of the girls that played last season and along with that, confidence as players and as a team.”
With one more year of school left, Reardon will return to the team to finish her last year as president of the club before she hands it off to the next candidate.
“Next year is my last year as an executive member of the club so I look forward to having the opportunity to do as much as I can before I pass the presidency to someone new”
Though she only has one more year with the women’s team, one thing is for sure. Rugby will always be an important part of Reardon’s life no matter where she goes.
“It is also the only sport where I have felt well rounded as an athlete because you do just about everything on the field at any given time so you have to prepare your body for that.”