BW Men’s Rugby Team Grows Behind Coach


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The 2014 Baldwin Wallace Men’s Rugby Team ended their season this November with an impressive record and a promising future for their freshly formed program.

Tony Blankenship, Jacket Sports Editor

The Baldwin Wallace men’s rugby team’s season ended this month, but it was a year that they will all remember for season to come.
They entered the Midwest Regionals with an undefeated record and a chance to go to the National Championship, and although they suffered their first defeat of the season, they are in the process of building a program that will be able to compete for years to come.
Under the leadership of Head Coach, Brian Lewis, the team is made up of a mix of freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors, but there is an interesting statistic that stands out: a good amount of these players are playing at this level with no previous rugby experience.
What they still have been able to accomplish in spite of this inexperience is a testament to coach Lewis as much as it is to the players, showing that with hard work and dedication anything is possible.
Running under the motto “Fifteen as One,”  the comradery that the team possesses is evident. “We remain humble and take every game one game at a time,” senior wing En’Ante Pearl said. These are just some of the keys to the team’s  success this season.
Pearl also mentioned that the team is very close on and off the field, and that they stick together, incorporating their motto into everything they do and not just rugby.
Although Pearl has been with the club for four years and has watched it grow since the beginning, there have also been many newcomers to rugby and the team this year, and for them the season has been something that they could not have ever imagined.
“It’s been a sweet experience,” freshman scrum half Zach Wood said.  Wood is in his first year as a rugby player and is making the transition from high school football to college-level rugby.  “I could never imagine this,” prop sophomore David Deager said on this year’s team.  Deager is also a first year player.
In addition to teaching these players how to play a sport that is brand new to them, Lewis is holding true to values that he expects his players to uphold, which includes not skipping class for anything rugby related.
Because of this, Lewis is not only instilling the importance of school to his players and making them better players, but also better students and better men.
Lewis also incorporates the women’s rugby team with the men’s so they all can learn and grow together as units that can lean on each other.
The season the rugby team had may not have been something expected by the BW community, but the team was confident in every game they played because of the values that were instilled into them and the work they put in together.
The team is in the midst of building a program that can compete for National Championship’s yearly, and they are doing it with players that are new to the sport.
With another year to keep building on the success of this year while gaining that much needed experience, expect the men’s rugby team to make even more strides next year.