PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Youth sports are wildly popular in the Portland area, and one of the fastest-growing games around is making its mark in the Pacific Northwest.
Thanks to Rugby Oregon, the game is open to boys and girls of all ages.
Chayil Briggs grew up watching her older brother and sister play rugby. She decided to give the game a shot when she entered the 4th grade.
“I’ve been waiting for years to be able to tackle other people,” Briggs said. “I like tackling and getting dirty and all that.”
Her mom and dad were introduced to rugby when they lived in Scotland. They tell KOIN 6 News they love Rugby Oregon’s coaches, many of whom are native players from South Africa, Scotland and New Zealand.
“I played a lot of years professionally and I just want to give all the information I have to these kids,” Stewart Magorian from Glasgow said. “They love it.”
Briggs’ mom Adrienne says she supports her daughter’s choice to play rugby.
“I’m not too worried about injuries, as long as she’s having fun and, relatively, it’s safe because they teach the kids how to tackle properly,” she said. “It shows these girls they’re strong and they can grow up to be strong women and raise strong women.”
Rugby Oregon started in 1999 and developed into one of the nation’s most successful rugby organizations. It attracts kids from all over Oregon and Southwest Washington.
Troy Hall, Rugby Oregon’s Director of Development, has been instrumental in growing the sport. He has introduced rugby to thousands of students in PE classes.
Hall also started a spring league for kids.
“It’s something we envisioned a few years ago, but to see it become a reality is something that for me, personally, is very rewarding,” Hall said.
For more information or to sign your child up with Rugby Oregon, click here.