Rugby team stays undefeated, big home games coming up

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The Hilltoppers have recently been named Men’s College Club of the Year by USA Rugby. 

Reporter

The St. Edward’s club rugby team has continued to be a dominant force in the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) Lone Star Conference.

The Hilltoppers have recently been named Men’s College Club of the Year by USA Rugby, with convincing victories over the University of Texas at Austin, Southern Methodist University, the University of Texas at San Antonio and Baylor University.

With such strong performances under their belt, the team is on track to compete for another state championship as they look to defend their title at the end of the season tournament. 

Senior team captain Luis Zaragoza described the feeling of winning the title last year as one of great excitement.

“(It) will always be remembered by the members of the team, including coaches, staff, fans and players,” Zaragoza said.

The Hilltoppers had an extremely experienced team last year with seniors composing a large portion of the starting lineup. The seniors were a vital driving force that helped the team lift the trophy last year.

This season, younger players have been challenged to fill the shoes left by the graduating seniors.

“It’s time for new people to step up. We like to think we’ve created a culture where the sophomores and juniors step up and become the new leaders of the team, Brannen Ellyson, an assistant coach said. “We’ve had an excellent influx of freshmen and I would say this is quite arguably the best freshmen class we’ve ever had.”

Such talent has been evident on the field this season as the St. Edward’s men’s team continues to be a powerhouse in their conference. The team is on an impressive run and currently sits atop the rankings in the Lone Star Men’s South Conference.

With an intimidating 10-0 record this season, the undefeated Toppers are an unbending challenge for any team. With so much success, the team has only the highest expectations for the rest of the season.

Sophomore Pablo Nasta says the ultimate goal is to win a national title.

“It’s always been our goal to finish at the top of our conference. We would like to win not only the state title, but also the national championship,” Nasta said.

A spot in the national tournament certainly looks visible on the horizon. It would not be surprising if the team is able to make an run in the national playoffs.