Monthly Archives: January 2007

Happy Friday

I wasn’t going to post anything today, because I’m busy and I didn’t have something incredibly, fabulously, awesomely great to share with you.

But it occurred to me that I hope I have a good weekend. And that you have a good weekend too.

My brain’s been in overdrive lately. Making mountains out of mole hills instead of being proactive and just dealing with those pesky moles. Not stopping for a deep breath every once in a while. Moving forward but realizing it’s okay to stop for a minute and relax, so you stay balanced.

So have a really good weekend everybody. And remember, they’re just moles.

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This is a spider. This is a spider on drugs.

I saw this last week when my boyfriend got it in an e-mail. But then I saw it again this morning … made my day.

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Rugby Bites and Bites

• I saw this yesterday, but now it’s out and about. The USA women’s 7s teams have been named for the USA 7s next month in San Diego, Feb. 9-10. Yay!

USA
Coach: Julie McCoy
Asst: Chris Ryan
Manager: Sadeana Green
Sara Chobot
Phaidra Knight
Amy Daniels
Alison Price
Inez Rodriguez
Teena Mastrangelo
Christy Ringgenberg
Laura Cabrera
Vanesha McGee
Yancy Graf
Jen Starkey

USA A
Coach: Mark Santiago
Staff Coach: Drew Fautley
Manager: Tristan Lewis
Rebecca Royce
Tyshawn Henry
Kelly White
Tania Carlson
Daniela Mogro
Lo Stender
Olivia Anglade
Jo Ward
Ellie Karvoski
Jen Flateman
Sue Hanson
Katy Hertel

Via Goff (subscription required), it will be our two Eagle teams – where “USA” has more experience but “USA A” has more speed – versus Canada, Canada A and China. New Zealand, Scotland and the Netherlands expressed interested, but opted out at the last minute. Overall, the focus is on build the program and presence of the team and this tournament.

“We’re trying to build something here that will be like what they have in Hong Kong,” said USA 7s coach Julie McCoy. “Ray Peterson at the USA Sevens has been really supportive, and he’s secured us a field and got us into the stadium for the final. We just need to have these other international teams make the commitment.”

Congrats to Sue and all of the Midwest players/coaches.

• Via Lisa at Put Me in Coach, the recent footwork camp in Philly was a big success.

On an unusually mild January weekend, Philadelphia Women’s Rugby Football Club (PWRFC) hosted Coach Julie McCoy and her team of instructors for an open Footwork Camp at LaSalle University in the City of Philadelphia.

Twenty seven players and 4 coaches representing 10 different club and college programs participated in the 2 ½ day session. Sean Ross led the weight lifting session, while Ellie Karvoski worked with the participants on to improve foot speed, balance, and agility.

Coach McCoy then evolved these training techniques into practical evasive running skills, empowering the ball carrier through a sophisticated progression of 1 v 1, 2 v 1, 2 v 2, 3 v 2, and 3 v 3 situations. Players learned not only how create gaps for themselves and to run evasively, but how to support an attacking player effectively. Offensive ball and support skills were developed through the contact situation, and details instruction was provided on defensive footwork and decision making, level 1, 2, and 3 tackling, and poaching.

“By the end of the camp all participants walked away with not only a new set of skills to add to their “toolbox” and take back to their team, but a great deal of confidence about how they will perform the next time they step on to the pitch,” PWRFC Captain Patti Hagel said. “After the camp, I reevaluated my workout routine and have now incorporated the methods learned at the camp. I look forward to taking these improvements in my footwork, speed, endurance, confidence and general rugby sense on to the pitch this Spring. Thank you Coach McCoy, Ellie Kavorski, Sean Ross and LaSalle University!”

University of Pennsylvania front row Cara McGuiness was the recipient of a camp scholarship. The PWRFC solicited applicants from Eastern Pennsylvania Rugby Union (EPRU) member colleges, and awarded the scholarship based upon a applicant essay.

Said Cara, “Footwork and Agility Camp provided me with skills that will not only enhance my game, but my entire team’s. The scholarship gave me the opportunity to be exposed to Julie’s footwork training, and now I have the honor and responsibility of sharing these techniques with my teammates. Being surrounded by more experienced players was an inspiration to analyze my own game and learn how to improve in order to play on future teams.”

For information about the Philadelphia Women’s Rugby Football Club, please visit http://www.pwrfc.org. If you are interested in bringing a local footwork camp to your area, contact Coach McCoy’s staff through http://www.footworkcamp.com.

I know we’re seriously considering trying to get one of the camps here in Madison next year. And for more thoughts on the camp, both Kentucky (who has a cute dog too!) and K-Train attended.

• An awesome tool that Emily found: Map My Run. Seriously, check it out. It uses Google Earth to help you plot your running paths, calculates distance, logs workouts. Good stuff. It’s going on the sidebar. And one of the developers commented to Emily that they have a blog and you can map your routes on your blog. Awesome.

• Did you know that the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation has raised one billion dollars to help find a cure?

• Helpful tips on branding yourself better at your job. Because we all need good jobs to fuel our rugby habits.

• And more caffeine news awesomeness (CNN video). It makes you smarter! My neural receptors love you!

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Thoughts … On Top of Thoughts

So I’ve been thinking about my blog. And I think it’s stupid to have two separate places where I can write.

So I’m going to kill the other blog. Don’t worry … it will be painless. She was all uppity anyway. I think it was her pretty blue background.

But I’m going to start some separation in my posts within this blog so it’s more obvious what are rugby things I’m just sharing and what are my thoughts, opinions, moments. Sometimes I think my stuff gets lost in the need for this to be a rugby site. It’s not. It’s just my site and I like rugby. I think that’s why I like to read the other blogs that I found out there or have popped up since I started this, because I like to see what you’re writing about today. It doesn’t matter if it’s about rugby or if it’s about washing dishes.

I’m going to keep all of the rugby links on the right side and all of my links I collect on the left side, in addition to some other separations/clarifications. I do like blogging. But I don’t want to do it anymore if I feel like it’s some chore.

And I forgot to post the scores post this week. Seriously, there should just be some large super-blog out there with multiple contributors and it will just be an all-encompassing women’s rugby blog. Hmmm … something to think on.

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Flores to lead Eagles for Two More Years

Via USA Rugby …

1-22-2007 – WNT COACH KATHY FLORES SIGNS ON FOR 2 MORE YEARS
BOULDER, Colo. – USA Rugby officially announced today that Women’s National Team Head Coach Kathy Flores’ contract has been extended for two more years.

“We are very pleased to extend Kathy’s contract as Women’s National Team Coach,” USA Rugby’s CEO and President of Rugby Operations Nigel Melville said. “Kathy has clearly demonstrated her ability to coach the team on the international stage and we look forward to her leadership as USA Rugby continues to build up the Women’s National Team programs over this next four-year cycle.”

One of the first tasks on Flores’ list will be to further develop a database that can be shared through all WNT programs so that USA Rugby coaches and administrators can better track players and their progress. Currently each program keeps their own data, however, USA Rugby wants to make this data accessible to all WNT programs so that coaches will have the information they need for discussion concerning player development.

As the Women’s National Team program will most likely see a few players retire after the last World Cup, Flores will also be tasked with identifying the next level of players to move into those spots. These will include USA A squad members, U-23 team members and players that have been brought to her attention through her support WNT staff (including U-19 and U-23) or having been mentioned by the local and TU coaches. Since the domestic calendar has been changed to further the development of players, the WNT program hopes to have more communication with the TU coaches regarding player progress.

Flores and her support staff are also currently in the planning stages of securing some international matches for this summer. This will give Flores the opportunity to see where the Team stands after the World Cup as the squad will be composed of a combination of veteran and new players.

“I am looking forward to the consistency in the programs contributing to not only the further development of players but the National Team becoming a force to reckon with on the international stage,” Kathy Flores said.

“Seeing as most of the top countries (particularly England and now Canada, as well) support their players financially, it will be hard for the United States to stay competitive if players must constantly worry about funding themselves,” Flores added. “We also have many coaches and support staff that donate their time and energy for the success of the Eagles. The restructuring of USA Rugby management sees a commitment to helping the women return to the top-ranked spots through funding and administrative support.”

Flores (Alameda, Calif.) has seen success from both sides of pitch, as an Eagles captain and coach. As a national team player, she captained the United State’s first national team in the Can-Am series, defeating Canada 22-3 in her first capped appearance where she scored a try. The Eagles would go 7-1 with Flores on the pitch as a scrumhalf and No. 8, including the first Women’s Rugby World Cup championship with a 46-0 blanking of the USSR in 1991. Most recently, as a coach, Flores’ led the Eagles to a 4-1 finish at the 2006 Women’s Rugby World Cup. She has been named the Women’s Sports Foundations Coach of the Year in 2000 and the 2003 recipient of the IRB Personality of the Year Award. In addition to coaching on the highest level, she has also tutored a number of club and Territorial Union All-Star teams.

I think the development of this database could be great for the women’s programs, make them much more cohesive. I do hope they pay attention to all the regional and local coaches though for input on up and coming players. There are a lot of potential Eagles out there just looking for a shot.

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A new blog for Blondie

The past few days have been interesting, both in life, and the blog.

I spent last weekend in Chicago, which was a great time, and returned to a very busy and stressful week of work at home. I also had my “job interview” for my salary adjustment at my work and found a potential subleaser for my apartment. The subleaser, if it all works out, wants the place as soon as possible. Meaning I might be moving this week/weekend and have yet to pack a thing.

I’ve just been frankly too tired to blog.

Additionally, I’ve been in a, shall we say, interesting e-mail discussion with a rugby reporter who strongly disliked some remarks (admittedly sarcastic ones, no surprise there for my regular readers) I made last year about his writing and articles.

It didn’t end well, but I stand by my opinion of his writing, which I felt does a disservice to women’s rugby, and not surprisingly, he thinks I am “lacking wit”, have no “bona fide” or “professional” experience in writing (I didn’t feel the need to further defend working 10 years in the field of reporting/editing, sports information and media relations or my master’s degree in journalism just because I blog for fun) and that it is “par for the course for irrelevant blogs such as yours so you’re about where you should be”.

One of his counterparts had inquired prior to our e-mail discussion if I was interested in contributing some writing. Needless to say, I am no longer interested. And while this blog may be “irrelevant”, at least it’s fun and it’s ours. And here, women’s rugby rules.

Obviously, this week’s events have given me quite a lot of fodder to sort through in my mind. And I’ve decided to try a little experiment with a blog for rugby and a separate personal blog – Blonde + Rugby = Awesome. That’s a working title, I’ll see if it grows on me. [Update: Nope, changed my mind and killed it the next day.]

I moved a few things over there already and I may migrate some of my personal posts over there as well. Not sure yet. Stay tuned …

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The value of work …

Just something I read last night that I’m trying to remember today …

“That which we obtain too easily, we esteem too lightly. It is dearness only which gives everything its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price on its goods.”

— Thomas Paine

Ain’t that the truth?

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