By: Colin Mackintosh
This past Spring Semester, four members of the MCRC studied abroad and also joined rugby clubs in their host countries. Captain Kyle Dickey ’17 and Colin Larsen ’17 both played for Joaca Rugby in Florianopolis, Brazil, while Paul Molloy ’17 played in Niteroi, Brazil and Captain Jake Feury ’16.5 played for a Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. The return of Captains Dickey and Feury, along with the continued presence of Spring Captains Adam Markun ’17 and Miller Judge ’16.5, ensures that the MCRC will have an unprecedented amount of senior leadership this upcoming season. Additionally, Larsen and Molloy look to continue to make significant contributions on A-Side. Molloy was a presence last Fall for the club. He started multiple games at wing for the A-Side, and often delivered crushing hits that instilled fear in the opposition. Larsen was abroad for the entirety of junior year, but based on his commitment to the club during sophomore year, he will surely be an important piece for the A-Side. During sophomore year, Larsen was frequently called on as a sub to bring energy to the forwards pack, and he proved himself to be a valuable asset to the club. Larsen, along with Dickey, also played a role in Joaca Rugby’s qualification in the National Tournament in Brazil.
As for their semesters abroad, all four players had great experiences, particularly on the pitch. Dickey said that “rugby practice became a highlight of [his] day.” In addition, Dickey, who played flanker abroad, saw improvement in his game in the lineout, in carrying the ball in open field, and in his tackling ability. Larsen, Molloy, and Feury also saw improvement in their rugby skills while abroad, and this drive to improve that is innate for members of the MCRC should propel the club during the Fall season. All the Middlebury ruggers noted that it was great to make friends in foreign places that shared a similar passion for rugby, especially in Brazil, where rugby is growing quickly and becoming increasingly competitive. As icing on the cake, Molloy, Dickey, and Feury all attended the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and had the opportunity to watch some Olympic Sevens Rugby and and cheer on the United States. We are all very excited to welcome them back to Middlebury after a semester away!