Club Sport of the Week: Women’s Rugby

The CSM Women’s rugby team consists of around 17 current members and is always looking for more players. Practices are from 6-8 P.M. on Mondays and Wednesdays on the IM field. There is no experience required. The team plays league matches again teams like Boulder, UNC, Wyoming, and Mesa and participates in the Collegiate Eastern Rockies Football League. They also host the annual Prom Dress Rugby game as a fundraiser for the program. If you have any questions about the program, please contact or visit their website at

Women’s rugby is a full contact team sport which originated in England in the 19th century. It is played on a field 330 feet long and 230 feet wide, with H-shaped goal posts on each goal line. Rugby is played in over 100 countries across six continents, with over 118 unions being members of the International Rugby Board. Each team starts the match with 15 players on the field (eight forwards and seven backs).

Forwards are the players who gain and retain possession of the ball. They are commonly referred to as the “pack”. The forwards consist of three rows: the first, second, and back rows. The first row consists of three players: two props and the hooker. The two props are used to support the hooker during scrums, to provide support the jumpers during lineouts, and to provide strength and power in rucks and mauls. The second row consists of two locks, which are the tallest players in the team and specialize as lineout jumpers. The main role of the locks is to either collect the thrown ball or ensure the ball comes down on their side. The back row is often called the loose forwards and is made up of two flankers and the number 8. The main role of the two flankers is to win possession through turn overs and the main role of the number 8 is to control the ball after it has been heeled back from the front of the pack.

Backs are the players who create and convert point scoring opportunities. The backs consist of half backs, three quarters, and full backs. Half backs are the first players to receive the ball following a breakdown, lineout, or scrum. Three quarters are the players who attempt to tackle attacking players and finish moves and score. Full backs are the players who fields any opposition kicks and is often the last line of defense should an opposing player break through the back line.

Points can be scored in several ways. A try is scored by grounding the ball in the in-goal area, between the goal line and the dead ball line. A try is worth 5 points and a subsequent conversion kick scores 2 points. A successful penalty kick or a drop goal both score 3 points.

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