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Rugby Cat Senior Profile: Seamus McCarthy

By Jacob Novak '19, 04/12/19, 11:00AM EDT


Seamus McCarthy ‘19 lives in Berea, Ohio and attended St. Mary’s of Berea. He lives with his mom, sister Nora, and brothers Aidan, and my fellow manager Declan McCarthy… more on Declan to come.

Seamus played football growing up. He didn’t tryout for rugby until the eighth grade when he was told by a friend to give rugby a try. Seamus decided to tryout for the Parma Blackhearts Rookie Rugby 7s team. His mother was very clear that he had to play rugby, having played the game herself in college at John Carroll University, where she played second row and had a strong distaste for Ohio State. The Blackhearts would go on to win the state title that season. Seamus came to Saint Ignatius excited to kick off his 15s career.

“I remember the first couple of practices having an edge over some of the kids because I had played in eight grade but it still was tricky to transition from 7’s to 15’s,” Seamus said. “Freshman year was fun, practicing at Edgewater and jumping into the water after a hot spring practice. Freshman year ended with our freshman team losing in the state championship to Moeller’s JV team. Sophomore year, I got to play on Varsity B and travel to France and play in France, which was really cool. Junior year, I got some A-side playing time and was able to go to South Africa and play in the World’s School Fair, which was awesome.”

The things that kept Seamus excited about a new season were getting back to playing the most physical sport and, more importantly, the tightly knit brotherhood that is Wildcat Rugby.

“I love the brotherhood of this team. It’s unlike any other sport I’ve played. Long bus rides to go play Gonzaga in D.C., down to Columbus, and even going international with the team is an amazing way to grow closer with my teammates.”

The transition for Seamus was “ a little weird, but it took me two weeks to get everything. From 7’s, where there rarely set pieces (lineouts, scrums), to 15’s, where there could easily be ten scrums a game, was really toughest part of my learning experience early on.”

Seamus praises the sports physicality over everything.

“I fell in love with the game during my freshman year. The fast pace and the ability to run the ball made me enjoy it a lot. Playing rugby was a thrill, too, because I got to run the ball and I couldn’t do that in football.”

Seamus is currently looking at The University of Arizona and Saint Joseph's University, where he intends to play rugby. As for whether or not he will go back to his rugby 7’s roots, Seamus says, “I’ll probably stay with 15’s, as it’s the more physical of the two.”

Seamus looks to major in business at his future school.

“I would like to thank my mother, grandmother, grandfather, and all of my coaches,” Seamus says.