Among all the activities and gatherings of Club Rush at California Baptist University this semester, the rugby club has grown from a club to an organized sport on campus.
The team uses the “Lancers” name during on-campus games and practices, but are known as the Spartans when playing games off campus.
They are not allowed to identify as a CBU affiliated team when they play against other schools because of liability.
After being on a rugby team in high school, Mickey Hike, senior aviation flight major and captain of the rugby team, decided to start the rugby club his freshman year at CBU and has remained dedicated to the club since.
“I got super passionate about it and wanted to keep playing. I got a bunch of guys together and created the club,” Hike said. “This year has really become a lot more organized.”
Vincent Camagay, freshman nursing major, said he has played rugby for five years and has sustained minor injuries including cuts to the face, sprained ankles and a knee injury.
“My mom was really scared about me playing because she saw we were tackling without any gear and she was worried, but let me do what I loved,” Camagay said. “My dad loved the physical aspect of it.”
Keegan Rivera, junior mechanical engineering major, said despite the loss in the game against Azusa Pacific University, the game was a learning experience for new teammates who are still learning the rules.
“Hike told me there was a rugby club so I came out to practice a couple times and I was hooked,” Rivera said.
Hike said starting the club during his freshman year was easy.
“We did have one guy get injured – not too seriously –but I think the school got shaken up, so they wanted to make sure they had all their ducks in a row before we started doing such a ‘dangerous sport,’” Hike said. “After three semesters, [they] didn’t allow us to renew the club because they wanted to make sure they had it all worked out liability wise.”
To start the club again, the team had to talk to the Office of Community Life. The rugby club was reunited at the beginning of the 2016–2017 school year.
Hike said he is hoping for a club sports program to start, because only then can the rugby team use the Lancers name and play against other teams.
The team encourages students and family to watch their games. To view game times visit @rugby_spartans on Instagram.