Get our newsletters

Rugby notes


On Saturday, April 20, the Doylestown Rugby Football Club men’s team traveled to Highspire Memorial Park to compete against Harrisburg RFC. The Dragons, traveling with only 16 players, knew they were going to have to come out hard and fast. Friendly matches are all fun and games, but traveling light is another story.

After eight solid minutes of hard pounding rugby, captain Matt Frederick led his troops and made his way across the try line, giving the Dragons the lead, 5-0. This pace stayed consistent throughout the first half. Every 9-10 minutes, the Dragons seemed to be able to push their way and touch the ball down. The first half concluded with many line breaks but also, a lot of penalties. However, the Dragons maintained the lead with a score of 17-7. Julio Marsiglia and Nick Kaczmarczyk scored and Dean Hawkins made a conversion.

At half time, Frederick gave words of encouragement to the lads and coach Julian Bellman said, “We’re playing hard-fought rugby, but we need to hurry and get to our spots faster.” With only one sub, the fatigue was setting in, but the Dragons continued to fight.

The whistle sounded and the second half began. This half looked as if it was a repeat of the beginning of the first. The Dragons came out, firing on all cylinders. That became evident when Nick Kaczmarczyk fought to touch down a try. The Dragons led 24-7. Harrisburg did not roll over and play dead. They came back fighting hard. They put up 21 points in the 20 minutes following Kaczmarczyk’s try, leaving the Dragons to dig deep and earn this win. The Dragons were down 28-24. Who was going to give up the ghost in the last 10 minutes?

Going back and forth with scores, it was still anyone’s game. Kaczmarczyk put down another try for a hat trick. Score: 29-28 for the Dragons. Harrisburg fired back with another seven points of their own. As the clock was counting down, new winger, Thomas Jacoby, made his way to the try zone for another five points. With about three minutes left to go, the Dragons found themselves on the wrong side of the scorecard, down 34-35. This was the time to dig deep and do whatever was necessary to get a point.

After receiving the ball, the Dragons started moving down the field, one line break at a time. Harrisburg started to feel the pressure and penalties began to compile. One tap-and-go after another, the Dragons were on the move; inching ever so slowing toward the uprights. The clock ran out, but the Dragons still had possession. All they needed was to touch it down. Who stepped up but big man, Connor Dolan. Taking two men with him, he broke through the gain line and managed to seal the victory for the Dragons. Final score: Dragons 39 - Harrisburg 35.

After that performance, the Man of the Match went to Dolan and the Hard Hat of the Match went to Jed Fizzano. Next week, on Saturday, April 27, the Dragons will travel to Wilkes to battle it out in their final friendly match of the 2024 spring season. The anticipated kickoff is 1 p.m. at The Bog.

On April 21 the Doylestown Rugby Academy high school boys team traveled to Wilmington, Del., to play Salesianum in a nonleague match. Both the A and B sides came away with victories. The A side score was 66-14.

Try scorers for Doylestown were: Chago Bustello (one), Dante Burns (one), Joey Craig (one), Cade Aivazian (one), Owen McCarty (one), Andrew Gilroy (one), Gavin Koch (one), Marco Burns (one), Aaron Kelly (one) and Bailey O’Malley (one). Craig kicked eight conversions. The Man of the Match was Zach Venziale.

The B side score was 41-17. Try scorers for Doylestown were: Sam Piszil (one), Caden Sailer (one), Alejandro Benites (two), Bailey O’Malley (one), Luke Sugalski (one) and Alex Stukis (one). Nolan Corey kicked three conversions. The Man of the Match was Alejandro Benites,

Doylestown will host Cumberland Valley in a league match on Sunday, April 28.

The Doylestown Rugby Academy high school girls team took on rival Knightmare Rugby on April 14, in Lancaster and lost a heartbreaker 43-5, as they were without multiple starters. Leah Cipollo scored the only try of the day for the girls team.

On April 21, the high school girls team hosted Corning (N,Y.) girls rugby. Doylestown defeated their EGRL opponents by a score of 77-26. Leah Cipollo and Sydney Haddon led the team with four trys each. Co-captain, Maggie Austin, scored two trys and Jocelyn Terry, Lilly Fiske and Mackenzie Harriett-Clay each tacked on a try. Terry added four conversions and Haddon added two.

Daisie Jurbala received the Hit Chain Award for excellent, hard tackles and Nora Rosenburg was awarded the Player of the Match Award for an overall great game of defense and setting up plays to allow her other teammates to score.

The high school girls team will next take on Downingtown Girl’s Rugby at home on April 28.

The Doylestown Rugby Academy middle school girls team was triumphant against Elizabethtown Middle School in Lancaster on April 14 by a score of 94-10. Vivian Foley and MJ Cashman led with three trys each. Ashley Kelly, Mackenzie Harriett-Clay, Delany MacMullen, and Joey Sabo each had two trys. Fiona Bonenberger, Saylor George, Rachel Swidorski, and Emily Kremser added a try each. Bonenberger and Kelly made one conversion each. The middle school girls team will next play against Downingtown on April 28 at home.

The Doylestown Rugby Academy junior team (eighth and ninth grade) played their third league match yesterday at home against Blackthorn Rugby club and came away with a 66-12 victory. The Dragons executed nearly perfectly in the first half and raced out to a big lead. Doylestown upped their overall record to 5-0 on the season. Try scorers for Doylestown were: Gavin Graham (two), Nick Miletto (two), Mason Darrows (two), Louie Cipollo (one), Jamie Weir (one), Liam Hoey (one) and Owen Pudlo (one). Weir kicked eight conversions. Blackthorn had two trys and one conversion.

The Dragons’ next match will be at home against Downingtown on April 28.

After playing the past three weeks on the road, the Doylestown Rugby Academy youth team returned to their home pitch, the Doylestown Maennerchor Field, to take on local rugby rival, the Blackthorn Youth Rugby Club. The Young Dragons took control of the match early by scoring two trys.

The 10-0 halftime score was increased with two additional trys by Doylestown players. Eventually, Blackthorn got on the scoreboard two additional times, and the Young Dragons finished off the game by scoring their fifth and final try. By the final whistle, the Doylestown Rugby Academy Youth Team was triumphant, winning the game by a final score of 25-10.

The Young Dragons improved their overall record to 3-0 in the Rugby Pennsylvania League.

Try scorers for Doylestown were: Crew McFerson (two), Jonah Khanan (two) and Vinnie Mignon (one). Blackthorn had two trys.

The Doylestown Rugby Academy youth team will play its next match at home on April 28 against the Downingtown Youth Rugby Team.

For information about Doylestown Rugby Football Club, go to

Join our readers whose generous donations are making it possible for you to read our news coverage. Help keep local journalism alive and our community strong. Donate today.