There are several rugby clubs in San Antonio, Texas, and they welcome everyone from rugby veterans to newcomers with no rugby experience.
There are two clubs and one women’s team in the Texas fifteens divisions. The clubs also play sevens rugby during the summer and support some great local 7s tournaments. We’ll highlight three San Antonio rugby clubs in this article:
- San Antonio Rugby (The Armadillos)
- Alamo City Rugby (The Defenders)
- San Antonio Women’s Rugby (San Antonio Riveters)
There’s a strong military tradition in San Antonio, with many local veterans who took up rugby while serving at home or abroad. This has undoubtedly strengthened the local clubs.
San Antonio Rugby Club
The San Antonio Rugby Football Club is one of the oldest rugby clubs in Texas.
They also have one of the best club logos, which shows their nickname: the Armadillos.
Practice And Playing Fields
The club trains on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at Wheatley Heights Sports Complex.
The address for the practice fields is 200 Noblewood Drive, San Antonio, TX 78209.
Matches are played at 700 Morningview Drive, San Antonio, TX 78220.
San Antonio Men’s Rugby Teams
The club has two men’s fifteens teams, which makes them one of the bigger Texas clubs.
One team plays in D2, the second division in Texas. They’ve been about mid-table in the last couple of years, but have had some very successful in prior seasons. The big rivals at this level are the two strong Houston teams, HURT and HARC.
A second men’s team plays in D3. Aside from the derby matches against Alamo City, the two Austin giants (the Huns and the Blacks) are big rivals.
The club plays sevens through the summer. Teams play in local tournaments and join other tournaments in neighboring cities.
San Antonio Youth Rugby (Boys And Girls)
The club has an excellent youth program for ages five to sixteen.
The younger kids play touch or flag rugby, which is a non-contact version of the game. This level is co-ed, with boys and girls having fun and learning skills together.
The older youths are introduced to tackling safely and play the contact version of the sport. They’ll play both sevens and fifteens rugby at different times in the year.
A Strong Medical History
The club was formed in 1971 by a group of medical students and doctors at the Brooke Army Medical Center. Harry Laws, an air force doctor, was the main founder.
The club continues to have close connections with the Army Medical Center. This is what Arnal Prasad (prop and noncommissioned office) had to say in 2016:
We have varying degrees of medical trades from physical therapists, to dentists, doctors, combat medical technicians, dog handlers, MEDEVAC pilots.Arnal Prasad, 2016
Harry Laws, US Rugby Club Legend
Laws went on to become a legendary figure for founding rugby clubs. Take a look at this list of clubs that he founded after San Antonio (and I’m skipping a few):
- AFA Alumni RFC (72)
- Rapid City RFC (76)
- White River RFC (1999)
- Orchard Park HS RFC (2002)
- East Aurora HS women (2003)
- Northside women (2007)
Here’s the club website.
The best place for up-to-date news and schedules is on their Facebook group.
Alamo City Rugby Club
Alamo City RFC was founded in 1983 by a group of nine players who got together to form the rugby club.
They are also known as the Defenders in homage to the region’s history. History is also reflected in the club badge.
Practice And Playing Fields
The home ground is in southeast San Antonio, where the club secured land in 1986. The club pitches are known as Bowie Field.
The address is Brook’s Park, 3605 Goliad Road, San Antonio, TX 78214.
Alamo City Men’s Rugby Teams
The club has played in the higher D2 division in previous seasons.
In the truncated 2019/20 season, the men’s fifteens team played in the D3 Texas division. Their city rivals, San Antonio RFC, played in the same division which gives great local derby matches.
The club plays in sevens tournaments through the summer.
The club also hosts the Fiesta 7s Rugby Tournament, which they’ve been running since 1984. This is a fantastic weekend tournament that coincides with the city’s Fiesta San Antonia festival. National and international 7s teams are drawn to the event – and the rest of the festivities.
Alamo City Youth Rugby
Alamo City supports a high school club and is heavily involved in coaching the youth players.
You can check out their website.
The latest news for schedules and training is on their Facebook group.
San Antonio Women’s Rugby
This women’s rugby club is also known as the San Antonio Riveters. They were founded in 2015 by a group of women who wanted to play sevens rugby.
Although starting as a sevens team, the club has expanded to play fifteens rugby.
The club badge is unmistakable. Meet Rosie the Riveter:
The club training fields are in Olmos Basin Park in downtown San Antonio.
The address is 526 West Devine Rd, San Antonio, TX 78209.
Training is on Monday and Wednesday evenings. But check out their Facebook page for the latest schedules.
San Antonio Women’s Rugby Teams
The fifteens team played in the D2 division in Texas in the truncated 2019/20 season. When the season was canceled, the Riveters were at the top of the table with a great run of wins.
They were mid-table in the previous season, but always competitive. Their big rivals at this level are the Dallas Reds and the Austin Valkyries.
The club is always looking for new members and welcomes enthusiastic newcomers with little rugby experience. You’ll get good coaching, and may start off playing sevens to get a feel for the game.
The Riveters practice and play sevens rugby through the summer. They compete in several local tournaments and head off for more competitions throughout the region.
The club supports a high school girls team with coaching and mentoring.
The practice sessions are also at Olmos Basin Park. You’ll get the latest details on their Facebook page.
Who Was Rosie The Riveter?
There are a few candidates who may have inspired the iconic figure, but I’ll go with the New York Times.
Rosalind Walter was one of many women who joined the assembly lines during the 2nd World War. She worked the night shifts riveting fighter planes at an aircraft manufacturer.
A newspaper article about her led to a popular song: Rosie The Riveter.
Norman Rockwell drew one version of Rosie. Another version was drawn by J. Howard Miller: this one has the polka dot bandanna and the flexed bicep. You’ll recognize the description when you look at the club badge!
San Antonio Riveters Online
This is their website.
The Facebook group has the most current news and training schedules.