The Providence Rugby Football Club (PRFC) was founded in the fall of 1969 by several local athletes with rugby experience and players from the Brown University Rugby Team. Since then the Club has grown to include a women's and old boy's side.
Photo by Rob Schnack
The club got its start thanks, in part, to the efforts of Dave “Ace” Zucconi, a Brown alum who learned the game while serving in the U.S. Air Force overseas. Zucconi drafted several Brown alumni to play on Sundays and in the first year (’69–’70) the team won all of the thirteen matches they played.
PRFC’s first official season was the spring of 1971. The club was recognized by NERFU after an organizational meeting by five of PRFC's founders – Mike Diffley, Jay Fluck, Bob Hoder, Bill Mullin and Hal Wilder. In it’s first season PRFC posted an 11-4 record, including a second Guinness Championship. Since then, the club has won the annual NERFU championship twice, 1975 and 1990, two championships at Saranac Lake, 1976 and 1977, plus several successful tours to England and Scotland in 1976, Ireland in 1979, and to England, Scotland and Ireland in 1987.
In more recent history, the Providence Rugby Club has continued to build upon the winning ways of the club’s founders. In 2002, PRFC captured the regular season New England Division II championship by virtue of a 7-1 record. After finishing just out of playoff competition due to tiebreaker criteria in the fall of 2004 Providence placed second in the Spring NERFU Tournament. The 2005 season saw the club make the National Sweet 16′s for the second time in club history.
Providence Rugby has continued to make strides each and every season since then placing in the top 3 at the NERFU Tournament almost each year. PRFC continues to show a strong commitment to not only the growth of Rugby in the Providence area, but also a commitment to the community and to each other. Providence continues to field highly competitive and successful summer 7’s teams. The team has used the summer to foster strong relationships with returning local college players and as a stepping stone to successful conference play in the fall season. Over the years Providence Rugby has consistently shown that a close group of people with similar goals can produce a solid and successful rugby club.
In 2004, graduates from local Rhode Island and Massachusetts colleges decided that they wanted to continue playing rugby after graduation, and so the Providence Women’s Rugby Team was established.
Each year they played the team grow in numbers and skill, and by 2007 they won the NERFU Cup in the DII division. In 2008 and 2009, they again placed first in NERFU (and 2nd in NRU) in DII and continued on to the national tournament, placing 5th and 4thin the nation, consecutively.
In light of their continued success, the team made the decision to move up to DI for the 2010 fall season. They thrived in their first year, remaining undefeated during the regular season and heading to the Round of 12 in Austin, TX, where they came in 8th in the nation.
In recent years, the team has taken some tough hits, losing excellent players and coaches who we miss to this day. Providence Women made the decision to move back down to DII in order to rebuild the foundation of their team in fall 2015. Fortunately, we have found stability in our new coach, Kathy Flores, who coached the USA Women’s Eagles for nine years as well as played at an international level. Along with our coach and talented new players we are looking forward to our future.
We are proud to call ourselves Providence Women’s Rugby. We are a team of heart and true grit; a team that is thankful for the commitment and sacrifices its players make to breed success; a team dedicated to our community and cares for one another.
We always welcome any and all new players, regardless of previous experience. Email our captain, check out a game, or come socialize with us!
Old Boys - The Rhody Old Cocks
Providence Rugby has a rich history dating back to 1969. The club has many former members who play with the Rhody Old Cocks. If you think you are over the hill, think again and check out the Rhody Old Cocks. For more information on the Rhody Old Cocks, please contact Jeff Sperling