North Pitt United RFC Rugby

North Pitt United RFC Rugby

Jason Lynn

I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with head coach Jesse Danka of the North Pitt United RFC Rugby team. The team plays their first game November 19th at their home field, Aquinas Academy. The team is consisted of talented athletes all over the Pittsburgh region.

The team is currently recruiting more players. There is a player/parent meeting November 19th at 1pm (Aquinas Academy). A couple days in which they will be holding training sessions. December 3rd, 10th, 17th at Wildwood Sports Park. The season will run through March 11th to May 14th. Rugby PA championship will be May 20th and 21st. Matches will be held on Sunday afternoons at Aquinas Academy.

Last year was the clubs first season and the team finished 4-5. We made it to the Western PA Division Championship where lost to the Kiski Valley Titans. Kiski Valley ended up going on to be the Rugby PA State Champions.

The coaches this year are Jesse Danka (Boys varsity), Alex Gralia (Girls varsity) Ben Keller (Junior varsity). The coaches are trying to establish two new teams this year. A varsity girls team and a junior boys team. The team has 14 returning Varsity players with 15 more showing interest for their sophomore season.

When asked what one thing he found unique about the sport, coach Danka replied, “Rugby is an extremely unique sport that stresses the importance of humility, respect, sportsmanship and community. There is nothing quite like battling for 70 minutes on the pitch and then lining up to eat a post-match meal with your opponent, their families, the referees and coaches. The brotherhood/sisterhood stretches way beyond the individual team and is a bond that can carry well into adulthood.”

Ways you can sign up to play is going to the player/parent meeting or you can directly reach out to Coach Danka. His number is (724) 882-3131 or you can email him at [email protected].

Coach Dankas comments were “We hope that some students from North Hills come out to give Rugby a try in December. If you don’t enjoy yourself during these free sessions at least you made 25+ new friends.