'I pity the fool' who's on the field against Hord
Described as a “monster” on the field, senior Ryan Hord shares his experience as a flanker on the HHS Rugby team. The “Explorer” staff selected Hord as “Athlete of the Month” not only for Hord’s athletic ability but to get an inside on this up and coming sport at HHS.
What do you like about rugby? What does rugby offer that no other sports do?
I like that it’s a very player-run game. The coaches teach you things at practice and during film sessions, but when you get on the field, it’s up to you and your teammates to communicate, call plays, and decide what to do to come out on top. I also like the flexibility of the laws of rugby and how the refs try and keep play going by communicating with players rather than always stopping the game. I really like the intense physical aspects. You're always tackling, rucking, scrumming or sprinting. But the best part is the bond that you have with other rugby players and especially your team. It becomes a close brotherhood that is unlike anything else.
How long have you been playing rugby? And what got you started?
I've been playing rugby since junior year, which was my first year at Hudson. I've been interested in the game for a few years, but there weren't any opportunities to play at Walsh.
What's your position?
I'm a flanker. Flankers support the backs by giving them passing options or by rucking over them when they're tackled. Flankers also have to be making a lot of tackles and be the first ones to the breakdown to win the rucks and maintain or gain possession. Flankers are also part of the scrum and the lineouts.
What is your pregame ritual?
I don't really have a full ritual, but I listen to music before the games, and if I can, I like to be somewhere quiet or just be by myself for a little bit.
When did you move to Hudson?
I moved to Hudson when I was five years old and starting Kindergarten. A lot of people think I just moved here last year but I've just been going to different schools until last year.
Do you have a nickname? What is it and why?
I don't have a nickname from the team, but some of my close friends call me “rye bread” as part of an inside joke and some people have started calling me “Mr. T” because of my new haircut.
What can one find you doing on a typical Saturday?
Besides rugby games, most of my time is spent hanging out with friends. Other than that, I like to play guitar or watch rugby games at teammates’ houses. I also finally decided to get an Xbox© a few months ago, so I've been playing that recently.
What are your plans for next year? Do you still plan on playing rugby after high school?
I'm still deciding between Miami of Ohio and University of Kentucky for college. But whichever school I end up at, I will definitely be playing rugby.
Where do you hope to be in 10 years and what do you hope to accomplish?
I don't know what I want to study or anything yet so, as of now, in 10 years, I hope to have graduated high school.
What inspired your mohawk?
We took a team trip to compete in a tournament in North Carolina a few weeks ago. So I just decided to do something different for it. Unfortunately, it has to come off soon for prom and graduation.
What's the best thing about being a senior?
Getting excited about college, being lazy second semester and just having fun!