What first got you interested in rugby?A family friend used to play, and had mentioned that I should check it out when I got to college. After a freshman year spent with no organized sports for the first time in my life, I was itching for something to do, so I signed up for rugby.
What one or two things do you currently do in your training that are keys to your improvement and success?I do a lot of squats. And when I have access to a scrum machine, I’ll try to spend at least a half hour a week just working on the machine focusing on form, explosiveness, and strength.What has been your biggest rugby-related challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?I started out too small to play my favorite position effectively. The coaches told me to eat more and lift more weights – it wasn’t exactly a hardship!
Best rugby match memory/moment?
My senior year of college, we had a playoff game in the freak Halloween blizzard of 2011. We got probably 2 inches before the game started, had to have people with brooms sweeping the sidelines so we could see the field boundaries, and we must have had 5 inches of snow by the time the game was over. It was soggy and freezing and a couple people ended up with hypothermia and it was probably the coldest I’ve ever been, but as we began the second half, someone started this primal scream, and the whole team took it up, and as awful as I felt physically, there was still nowhere else I’d have rather been that day.
What was the best advice you were ever given?
As far as rugby goes, the best advice I ever got is a tie between “fall on your ass, it’s nice and padded” and “if you’re going to screw up, screw up hard”.
Do you have a saying or motto that you live your life by?
I don’t have any specific sayings, but I tend to think we should all try to excel at the things we can control, and not sweat all the other things that are out of our hands.
Where or who do you draw your inspiration from?
Lots of places – my family, my friends, my mentors, and other people I admire, and generally for the same reasons: they all share passion, drive, compassion, commitment, and loyalty to others in all the things they do.
Favorite pre-game song and rituals: I’m not actually much for pre-game songs and rituals, but I like to get Remember the Name by Fort Minor going on my iPod and that pumps me up. Doing a wiggle dance helps too.
Funniest rugby memory: There are too many, really, but I guess one of the top five would be my first time at Saranac – someone got in the bobsled outside the bar not realizing men pee in there, another teammate stole a canoe for a romantic rendezvous but lost the paddles and had to post-coital paddle back with her hands, the waiter at dinner was definitely not amused, and my roommate snored so loud she woke herself up.
Have you ever gone cow-tipping? I haven’t, but I think it might be hilarious.
What’s your favorite song to dance to when no one is watching?Baby got Back, by Sir-Mix-a-Lot, but I’d dance to that in public too!
If you could coach any team in the world for one day, which would it be?I’d love to coach the US Women’s Soccer team, though I’m definitely not qualified for that!