Sevens isn’t just a summer of goofing off on the rugby field for college students anymore, but it’s still fun, as the members of the All American camp will attest.
Fresh from a series of three-a-days at the Serevi Rugby Academy, Stanfill and some of them other 7s All Americans went right into intense training at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista.
“It’s awesome,” said the Central Washington University wing, who has slotted in at wing, center, flyhalf, and even a little hooker in 7s this week. “To play with so many top-notch athletes and get the level of coaching we’re getting has been amazing.”
Stanfill was a star for the CWU 7s team at the USA 7s Collegiate Rugby Championship, and also played with Old Puget Sound this summer.
“I think this group is a lot faster,” he said. “Everyone is quick. As far as my game goes, not a lot has changed, but I am learning a bunch of new positions. It’s been pretty intense.”
Many of the players went through the season as rivals, but that feeling doesn’t last long.
“There are guys from Utah, Army and Dartmouth, all teams that we lost to in the CRC,” said Stanfill. “But we’re all on one team. We spent most of the first few days being the only team here, and that helped us gel.”
Stanfill was encouraged to try rugby in high school in Vancouver, Wash. A quick and aggressive runner, he scored three tries in his first game, “even though I didn’t really know what I was doing,” and was hooked. He helped the Vancouver Sharks to an Oregon state title (Vancouver being just across the Columbia River from Oregon, they play teams closest to them). A Pacific Northwest all-star, Stanfill was invited to the USA U20 camp, and later played on the collegiate Pacific Coast all-star team.
“I had no idea I would go through all that and now be part of the All American program and be thinking about the Pan-Am Games and the Olympics,” said the Exercise Science major. “I’ve been very lucky.”