Willamette University rugby team travels abroad

Willamette University's club rugby team will travel abroad to challenge teams from Ireland and Scotland in the traditionally European game.

At 7:30 p.m. on March 23, the Willamette Rugby Football Club (WRFC) will play the Belfast Instonians at Shaws Bridge Stadium. At 4 p.m. on March 25, WRFC will challenge the University of Stirling at Monument Park in Stirling, Scotland.

WRFC Captain Stephen Scott's experience playing abroad led the team to pursue the upcoming matches. "While abroad, I was privy to play for the Belfast Instonians. They called me ‘Yank' or ‘Obama' and always wanted to know when I would bring the mighty Bearcats to face the Instonians," Scott said.

Before challenging the Irish and Scottish teams, the Willamette team will take in an international professional rugby match in Dublin. "Another great part of the tour will be the chance to watch a Six Nations game between Ireland and Scotland, which is like watching an N.F.L. playoff game in the U.S.," said Scott.

The cost of the tour has been paid for entirely by WRFC players' fundraising. WRFC is a member of USA Rugby, and plays in the Pacific Northwest Rugby Football Union's Division 2 Men's Collegiate-South League. This season, Willamette's record is 10-4-0.

For more information about the WRFC, visit the team's Web site,