The Geneseo club rugby team—otherwise known as the Warthogs—is already off to a great start with a 4-1 record. Having notched wins over defending state champions SUNY Oswego and having put in a dominating performance over rival Buffalo State to win the game 49-5, there is a great deal of optimism among the team for their season. President of the Warthogs, junior forward Chris Cummins is extremely proud of the team’s performance so far. “I honestly think that we have a chance to win states,” Cummins said.
Cummins’ expectation comes from the work ethic that he has seen from the team and the great shape that the players have worked to achieve. “One of our major strengths as a team is our fitness and our drive. We fight harder and we want it more.”
A lot of the dedication and ferocity that the team has comes from the team captains, junior 8 man Joseph Goldbloom and sophomore fly half David Levy, according to Cummins. “They both have the ability to make everyone around them better,” he said.
Even though the team has an impressive record and is in a position to compete every game, Cummins stated that the team is lacking in one major area: a home field. Though the rugby team is a perennial playoff contender, they have not had a home field to compete on. Hopefully, this will change soon, as the team has recently been approved to use Lower Merritt Field for games.
The prospect of playing games in front of fans on Geneseo’s campus is something that Cummins is looking forward to. “Geneseo home games in Rochester don’t mean as much as home games in Geneseo,” he said.
Though the field has been approved for use, it is still not ready for games. The goal posts for the team have not yet been installed, something that Cummins hopes that the Athletic Department changes soon.
Not having a home field has meant that the team has to pay for and reserve a field for use in Rochester and then make sure that each individual player is able to get to the game. Cummins believes that this has led to lower fan interest and turnout over the years.
“As a fan, are you going to drive 40 minutes to Rochester, or would you rather walk down to the field on campus?” Cummins said.
When discussing the importance of having a home field with junior full back Simon Honig, another player on the team, he mentioned his belief that the field will not only bring fans, but new players as well. Although the Geneseo club rugby team is already one of the largest organizations on campus, Honig thinks that the team could grow even more.
“The idea that somebody could look up from their desk in the dorms to see us playing and become interested is really cool,” he said.
The team has proven their will to succeed and the Warthogs hope that it has earned them a chance to grow in their ability to represent the Geneseo community. “I would love nothing more than to win a state championship on our home field,” Cummins said.
With the team off to a great start, the players locked in on their season and the prospect of having a home field to play on, both the players and the fans of the Geneseo Warthogs have a lot to look forward to this year.