Article By: Colin Mackintosh
Pete Sickle joined the MCRC this spring as our newest Assistant Coach. Coach Pete has worked primarily with the Development 15s Side this season. He has helped the current coaching staff not only in the growth of these players, but also in preparing the team for their past three wins against sides from the University of Albany, Norwich University, and St. Michaels College. This early success has made for a great start to Coach Pete’s tenure with the MCRC, and hopefully it is just a small glimpse of what he can help the club achieve moving forward.
Coach Pete arrived in Middlebury from Tel Aviv, Israel with a significant amount of rugby experience. Originally from California, Pete was first exposed to rugby at Harvard High School in North Hollywood. He went on to Carleton College in Minnesota and participated in rugby there as well. After college, Pete’s continued to participate in rugby, regardless of where he lived. A few of the clubs he has played for include Wakatipu RFC and the Auckland University Old Boys in New Zealand, the Santa Monica Dolphins in California, the Harvard Business Club in Cambridge, and the Ra’anana Roosters in Israel. While playing at Harvard, Coach Pete captained the side that won the 1997 MBA World Cup. In addition, he captained the Ra’anana side that won the 2002 Israel Cup Championship. In terms of previous coaching experience, Pete has coached the Ra’anana senior men’s side, and has experience coaching basketball, baseball, and football.
Throughout Pete’s experience with rugby, he has continually found that playing rugby creates an almost instantaneous connection with other rugby players. Pete has stressed this rugby fraternity to the MCRC on multiple occasions and has encouraged us to take advantage of it. Even before Pete decided to come to Middlebury, he got a sense of the brotherhood we have within the MCRC by talking to former coach Ben Wells. In addition to our positive social atmosphere on the club, Pete said he was fascinated with how “the MCRC sustains excellence on the pitch amidst the rigorous demands of the college”, and he hopes by coming to Middlebury that he can “contribute to continued success on and off the pitch.” As a club, we have hopefully shown thus far to Pete that we carry on the rugby brotherhood, while also performing exceptionally well on the field and in the classroom. We look forward to Pete’s input within the MCRC in the future, and hope that we can continue to progress as a club, and remain competitive at the DI level.