Jack Viens '13 to play rugby at Bay State Games
When teams and players take to the field at the Devens Recreation Center July 21 for rugby's debut at the Bay State Games, one of Wilbraham & Monson Academy's finest will be suited up and ready to go.
Jack Viens '13 made the roster for the Boston Irish Wolfhounds RFC, which has an experienced group competing in the U17 division of the statewide event.
“I'm really excited,” Jack said. “It's the first time rugby will be in the Bay State Games. I hope it goes well. I hope my team wins.”
The rugby at the Bay State Games is different compared to the rugby the 5-foot-11, 165-pounder plays at WMA, with the inaugural tournament opting to go to a 7v7 format as opposed to the standard 15v15.
“It's a fast-paced game and you tire out easily so you do need constant subs,” said Jack, who has played in just one other 7v7 rugby event. “There's more space. Rucks aren't as important as they are in 10s or 15s. You just need to get the ball back. All that matters is open field tackling, getting to space, and as my coach would say, probing for space to get by a defender.”
Jack will likely play prop for the Wolfhounds.
Teams are guaranteed three games at the Bay State Games, with the top four advancing to the medal round. The pool play games are 14 minutes, while playoff games are 20 minutes.