3rd Annual Blue and White Dinner Auction – Saturday, May 30, 2015

Hello everyone,

The Western Rugby Alumni are excited to extend the opportunity to participate in the 3rd Annual Blue & White Auction Dinner, Saturday, May 30, 2015 at Bellingham Technical College’s Settlemyer Hall.

This event raises money to support WWU Men’s Rugby Club as they work toward extending past successes. The WWU Men’s Rugby Club have recently represented the University in the 2013 USA Rugby National D1-AA Final Four in Bowling Green, Ohio and the 2012 USA Rugby National 7’s Tournament at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. The Vikings have had a very successful 2014-15 season so far and securing a seed in 2015 USA Rugby D1-AA National Championship Tournament is achievable.

WWU Men’s Rugby Club has limited financial support from University funds, making this event critical for raising money to help the players cover travel, equipment, and other expenses.

The dinner auction will have in attendance alumni, community members, parents, friends, and anyone who supports the goals of the Men’s Rugby program at WWU. Emcee, auctioneer, Director of Rugby for WRA, and BC Rugby Union Hall of Fame inductee Paul Horne always makes sure it is a lively and enjoyable evening, so please make plans to attend.

Here is how you can help:

  1. Please consider donating an item to the silent or live auction. These items can be donated from yourself, your employer, or a local business. Popular auction items in the past have included weekend get-away, rounds of golf, dinner/hotel packages, adventure excursions and much more. See attached donation form for you to complete.
  1. Please mark your calendar and plan to attend the event on May 30th. At the event you can meet the team members and purchase auction items to support them. Individual seats or tables are open for purchase for the dinner auction.

Visit our website at www.wwurugby.org and click on the “Events” tab for additional details.

We greatly appreciate your consideration of a donation and/or attending the event. We look forward to supporting the WWU Men’s Rugby Club as they continue their education, play a team sport and put Western on the map as a school to attend for scholastics and rugby.

Please contact Event Chair Jeff Lombard for help with on donations, tickets for the event, or questions:

Jeff Lombard (cell) 360.303.6617 – or – email: jeff@iarugby.com


Western Rugby Alumni

WRA is an IRS 501(c)(3) Charitable Organization so any donations made are fully tax deductible.

Dates Set For WWU Summer Rugby Camp

Western Washington University’s Campus Rec department has announced the dates for the 3rd Annual WWU Summer Rugby Camp.

The camp, for young players ages 13 – 17, will be held on the campus of Western Washington University in Bellingham, WA, from July 5th through the 8th.

The camp is a ‘residential’ camp, fully chaperoned, with participants staying and living on WWU’s campus for the week.  There is a ‘commuter’ option as well for local area residents.

Click on this link to get more information from WWU’s Campus Rec  Dept site:

Summer Rugby Camp

Or you can go to the menu above and click on the “Summer Rugby Camp” tab.

If you have any questions regarding the camp get in touch with Amy Cornish via e-mail at Amy.Cornish@wwu.edu or you can contact her by phone at (360) 650-3766

The Third Annual Western Rugby Alumni Golf Tournament

The Third Annual Western Rugby Alumni Golf Tournament will be held Friday, July 10, 2015.  The event is set to tee-off with a 1:00 pm shotgun start.

You may have noticed that the next day is the annual Can-Am 7’s Tournament hosted by the Chuckanut Bay Rugby Club at their facility in Ferndale, WA.

Reserve the date and plan to make a weekend of it…

WWU Rugby Poster 2015 - Final to use for web.jpg


Vikings Shoot Down Ducks After Slow Start

Slow Starting Vikes Power to Win Over Oregon Ducks

It was a long bus ride to Eugene. The team left Bellingham around 4:30 pm last Friday, on their way to their NCRC matchup against the Oregon Ducks, and it took seven hours to drive down to Springfield, OR.  When the team got there they checked into Motel 6 and hit the sack.  With an 8:00 am wake-up for breakfast and a stretch, and sleeping four to a room, it was cozy to say the least. Such is life ‘on the road’.  Advantage to the home team.

The sun was shining in Eugene and it felt like spring.  With a twelve-noon kick off, the boys spent the morning trying to work out the kinks and wake up but didn’t quite get it done.  Such is life ‘on the road’.

The Vikings came out flat and had much difficulty getting any flow to their game and found themselves down 15-3 at the half, with Nick Solimano (Sr, The Bush School, Seattle, WA) getting WWU’s only points on a penalty kick.   Continue reading Vikings Shoot Down Ducks After Slow Start

John Willihan Remembers Vic Coudriet

One of Western Rugby Alumni’s great supporters and former WWU and Chuckanut Bay  rugby player, Vic Coudriet passed away last week and friends put together a memorial for Vic that took place Saturday, January 17, 2015 in Bellingham.

Not everyone who wanted to be there could make it and one of those people was Big John Willahan who now lives and works in Alaska.  John set me this e-mail and wanted me to read it at the memorial, which I did.  What follows is the text of John’s message:

“Hey Dumper,

Just read in your WWU Rugby newsletter about Commander. That was sad news. He was one of a kind, a great guy, no BS straight shooter, philosopher with a great sense of humor. One of my heroes and favorites during my 15 years in Bellingham.

I’ll always remember how we mobbed Vic in congratulations during the game in Roscrea, Ireland on the 1984 tour, when he scored a try after not having played for a number of years (he was one of the older Chuckanut boys on the tour at the time at the ripe old age of maybe 37).

On the flight over the boys had gotten a bit out of hand, so on the flight home we were on a pretty strict probation and limited on the number of drinks we were allowed. I went up to the drink station to find myself cut off. On the way back to my seat I told Vic about the situation and between us we cooked up a solution. I put on my new Irish wool sweater, borrowed Vic’s glasses and his new Irish tweed cap and went back to the drink line. Using an English accent I ordered what all of the Brits in front of me were ordering (Vodka-Lemon Please!) from the same stewardess that had just cut me off. I walked back down the aisle with my drink to an ovation from the other passengers (who had witnessed the whole show) and got a cheers for a well executed plan from Vic as I gave him back his hat and glasses.

In the mid to late 1980s I spent a good deal of time in the Cocoanut Grove, and a good bit of that time on a barstool next to Commander discussing rugby, philosophy, and life in general. Vic was intelligent, deep thinking, funny, and a no bull crap guy. You knew where he stood on things (for instance he was definitely a Viking Rugger, when I’d talk about the Warthogs he would inform me that we were the Vikings–there were a couple of beer fueled philosophical discussions on this topic).

I remember once, before he was married, over at his house (an old victorian with tall ceilings about a block away from the Grove) he picked up a golf club and whacked a golfball across the room, embedding it into the plaster of his wall (the wall was pockmarked with holes). As I recall he said something like “The nice thing about being single is that I can come home at three in the morning and do this in my underwear”.

I drove out to Milt’s Cain Lake fishing derby with Commander a couple of times (I still have my “Controversial T-Shirt” from the 1988 derby in a tub somewhere–should probably get rid of it before my daughters find it after I’m gone). I remember singing with Vic on the way down and at Cain Lake (and on tours or occasionally a line or two at the Grove)–stuff like El Paso and Sloop John B. He knew a ton of early ’60s songs.

After I moved up to Alaska I was only in Bellingham about every 5 years or so, but I always made a trip out to the Grove and saw Vic. I did manage to see him for a few minutes last spring, Milt said something about his cancer, but you never think anyone is actually going to go.

Anyway, it was great seeing you and everyone last March. Give my condolences to Vic’s family and the boys (especially to Milt, I know they were best pals from High School). Hoist one or a number of beers to Commander tomorrow and sing a song or two, he was a damn great guy and deserves the best of send offs!”

John Willahan

Ready for Kick-off to the 2015 NCRC Spring Season

The Northwest Collegiate Rugby Conference (NCRC) 15’s season is upon us.  After a spectacular year for the Viking 7’s team in the fall, and a very helpful, very useful 15’s fall season in the BC Rugby Union U-20’s, the boys are ready to roll into the NCRC 15’s season.

At last summer’s NCRC Conference meetings there were several proposals that were voted on but the one that may have the greatest impact is the decision to have each team play every other team in the league.

So this year Western will have three home NCRC matches:  Western Oregon, Central Washington, and Eastern Washington.  The Vikings will hit the road against: UW, Oregon, WSU, and Boise State.  It should be an interesting season.

With the simplified schedule in mind the Vikings started their spring season on January 3rd when the coaches held a training session for those players that had returned from their holiday breaks a little early.  The dorms didn’t open until the 4th, classes didn’t start until January 6th, and with all that in mind, there were a surprising number of players at the training session on the 3rd.  The formal workouts began on January 6th and 8th, and Saturday, the 10th, started with a classroom “chalkboard” session this past Saturday followed by a two hour workout which was completed in time for everyone to watch the Seahawks playoff game.

Talking with Head Coach Paul Horne, the coaching group (all volunteers) are pretty high on the group of athletes they have this year.  There are a couple of injuries that they are dealing with but with the depth of this program, and the schedule they played last fall, there won’t be any drop off at all.

Coach Horne cited the work and efforts of Dan Ashworth (So, Lynden HS, Lynden, WA) a four year veteran of the Chuckanut Bay junior program, Noah Hanks (Fr, Peninsula HS, Gig Harbor, WA), Nick Bonovich (So, Dixon HS, Dixon, CA), Anthony Fleck (Fr, Ferndale HS, Ferndale, WA) a 6 year vet of the Chuckanut Bay youth program, and the whole of the forward pack as having great training sessions this year.

This Saturday’s match, January 17, 2015, against Western Oregon will be a great test for the WWU Men’s Rugby Club as they try and leave the 2013/2014 season behind.  It should be a great, huge step into the future for the Club.

Come out and join the boys as they play their first 15’s match ever on WWU’s new Harrington Field.  The first XV will kick-off at 1:00 pm followed by the second XV kick-off at 2:30 pm.


Schedule Changes

The schedule has changed for a couple of the upcoming games.

The match with the University of Puget Sound (UPS) had been moved to the UPS campus at 1500 North Warner St, Tacoma, 98416.

The best way to get there is to tank Highway 16 like you’re heading to Gig Harbor.  A couple of miles before you get to the Narrows Bridge, take the Pt. Defiance/ 6th Avenue exit and get in the far right lane.  Take a right on 6th Avenue, heading into Tacoma.  Take a left on N. Union Avenue and head north.  You should run into the south end of the UPS campus after several blocks.  You’ll notice the baseball field on your right and some other athletic fields.  Not sure which field the game will be played on.

The 15’s U-20 match against the UBC Old Boys Ravens has been moved from Saturday, October 18th, to Tuesday evening, October 14th.  The kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 pm and the match will take pace on Harrington Field.

Keep and eye on the WWU Men’s Rugby Fan Page for any last minute changes.  We will publish those changes here as well.

Since 1955…61 years of rugby and counting