First Women's Team

1994-95 First Women's Team

Borne out of the men's team's desire to improve their image on campus and the experience of one female student, Pegeen "Peggy" Quinn, who was exposed to women's rugby while studying a semester abroad in Ireland, the Fairfield Women's Rugby Club was formed in 1994. The initial team was a mixed bag of women of all ages, sizes and athletic abilities who turned up for the first practice, intent on learning the basics of rugby. The team debuted in 1994 in a first-ever match against crosstown rival Sacred Heart. With just a few practices under their belt and sporting red Fairfield t-shirts they stunned the women from Sacred Heart with a rousing victory. That first season also saw matches against Providence, Brown and Fordham.

Early competition each week was bigger and stronger than the Fairfield Lady Ruggers, leading to a strategy of open rugby. "Use your head and run," became the attacking strategy of the club. The first women's ruggers side learned harsh lessons in their early matches, including grace in defeat as well as in victory; they also met their obligations for hosting or being hosted after matches in victory or defeat. They embraced the competition of the match and camaraderie after it.

The Lady Ruggers were taught by their male counterparts and took the first important steps toward developing what has become a world class women's program. They set the tone for the club's values that remain evident today: performance, sportsmanship, respect, camaraderie, fun, and most importantly friendship. The culture of the women's ruggers is based in the notion that rugby is more than just a sport, it is a life lesson and a web of connections and friends that the players carry with them for the rest of their lives.

"Me me me me me; you you you you you; us us us us us; them them them them them..."

Players from the first ever women's club include: Jen McCarthy (Forward Captain '96), Dina Ponte (Back Captain '96), Kathleen Brady, Lynn Jacobowski, Donna Watson, Lynette Sheldon, Kirsten Dunnells Powers (Captain'97), Amy Shanle, Suzanne O'Brien Stone , Marybeth Guinan Pascarella (President '97)