Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Meet Rhianon Filer

So. What to say about myself? I like things that sparkle, I hate pineapple and I have recently considered legally changing my name to Megatron. (just kidding on the last one....maybe)
I started playing rugby when I was 16 years old when the high school I attended (Shout out to City Honors!) and one other in the area created the first two high school programs in the area; then high school rugby rapidly started expanding. By my senior year, we had won the New York State Championship and were invited to the National Invitational Tournament which that year was in rainy, flooded Portland, Maine. Playing against much larger and long-established teams, as a starting second row I helped take my team to win third place in the plate division. That summer I was given the opportunity to play 7s and in the NY Red & Blue all-star games. 
This was the closest I have gotten to "high level" rugby. 
I have the pleasure of coaching an amazing group of high school girls, the West Seneca Saints, who made a great run at the New York State title last spring and sent several girls to the state All-Star team. In the summer,I got the great chance to coach and regionally develop the sport of high school 7s with a team of girls from all across the region, finishing as high school division champions at Cleveland Rock N Roll 7s and winning a second place finish at the Saranac Can-Am Tournament in front of over a thousand spectators - more people than I have played in front of at one time myself. I am also currently working under the YDO of Rugby NY in order to secure grants/funding and coordinate a program that will teach healthy life skills and implement Try On Rugby to underserved girls in the Buffalo area. 
 Cleveland Rock N Roll 7s HS Champions
With the lack of established D1 or WPL teams in the area, my playing has been reserved to my social team  The South Buffalo Sinners (look us up, you know you wanna) whom I absolutely love to death. I have been given the unique opportunity to be player/captain/coach and while often times overwhelming, I could not be more excited and honored, even playing on a still rather broken ankle with torn anterior ligaments this past fall in order to fill out the roster. Additionally, I am not a "typical" social side rugby player. My career is coordinating a fitness center. I am a certified personal trainer and will be taking my National Strength and Conditioning Association Certification for Strength and Conditioning Specialist in March. I go entire seasons with out drinking alcohol in order to perform at my best, which makes for interesting drink-up conversation and all-too-sober shenanigans. ("WHY ARENT YOU DRINKING?!.....Oh because you're crazy.") 
 Buffalo Rugby. All photos: Rhiannon Filer
Creating new and lasting friendships and contacts within the rugby world is my favorite thing to do and I have learned in the past as a spectator that Vegas 7s is the place to do it. The opportunity to play at the LVI Tournament with high level players is extremely unique to my recent experience. I have been pushing myself harder in training because I feel like I have something to prove. It is a completely invaluable experience to me and I can't thank everyone enough who is collaborating to give me (and all of us) this chance. I'll do my best to make you all proud!

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