DNHS RUGBY CLUB
In 2010, four students established the on-campus Nighthawks Rugby Football Club with the support of the Del Norte High School administration. The dream was to field the first competitive rugby team in the Poway Unified School District. In the winter of 2010-2011, the dream came true. It was a great start toward building a winning tradition.
Q. Why play rugby?
A. It’s fun. Every rugby player runs with the ball, passes, tackles, and has the chance to score.
Q. Who plays rugby?
A. Rugby is the contact sport of choice for boys, girls, men and women around the world. High school rugby is played in the United States, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, France, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Argentina, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Canada, and more. Rugby is the fastest-growing youth sport in the United States, with more than 6,700 high school student-athletes playing the game. Rugby’s inclusion in the 2016 Summer Olympics has led to a massive increase in the popularity of our sport
Q. Is rugby a CIF sport?
A. No, however, there are several groups in the rugby community that are pushing for the inclusion of rugby as a CIF-governed sport. Though rugby is not CIF, it is a Varsity sport and student-athletes are able to letter in it.
Q. Who governs high school rugby if not the CIF?
A. The national organization is USA Rugby, through which all high school rugby players, administrators, and coaches must be registered. USA Rugby provides accident insurance for each player and $2 million in liability insurance for each high school team. Southern California Youth Rugby (SCYR) is our regional body, which organizes matches, referees assignments, and ensures all clubs are compliant with their rules.
Q. How much does it cost to play Nighthawks Rugby?
A. Athletic teams in the Poway Unified School District are supported by fundraising and donations. Although personal donations are not required for participation on the team, we hope that you support rugby, and by extension the Del Norte ASB Rugby Club in these endeavors. The cost of registration for USA Rugby is approximately $25, and registration with SCYR is $70. Additionally, cleats and rugby shorts are an individual cost required to play. If finances are an issue, please contact the coach for assistance.
Q. When is the rugby season?
A. Rugby is a winter sport. Practices start in November, and the season runs to early march.
Q. Where and when are the practices/games?
A. Generally, practices start at 4:00 p.m. and end around 5:30 at the back turf fields at DNHS on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Games are played on Friday nights or Saturday afternoons at high schools in the San Diego and Orange County areas Practice times and locations can change during the Thanksgiving and Winter Holiday breaks.
Q. Is there rugby outside of high school?
A. In 2016, seven-a-side rugby was introduced into the Summer Olympics. The U.S. Olympic team trains in Chula Vista at the Olympic Training Center. In San Diego County, there are dozens of youth rugby clubs with age-group teams at Under-8, U-10, U-12, U-14, U-16, and U-18 or high school. Almost every college or university has a men’s and women’s rugby team. Currently, several former Nighthawks are playing college rugby. Many colleges and universities offer financial aid, on-campus housing, or in-state tuition to out-of-state student rugby players. Every U.S. military academy has a rugby team. In Europe, Asia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Australia there are professional rugby leagues. The European and Southern Hemisphere professional leagues pay well, and it is common for accomplished American rugby players to find work overseas. There is a professional rugby league in the U.S., the MLR, with a franchise in San Diego.