Sacred Heart University sophomore Ashley Torres-Brown is coming off a big couple of weeks in which she received the National Intercollegiate Rugby Association (NIRA) Player of the Week. This came after she had a team-high two tries with 10 tackles as Sacred Heart advanced to 2-0 after a win over Brown.
For Torres-Brown, this is her sixth year of playing rugby competitively. She began her rugby career in her freshman year of high school, and rugby has since been special to her ever since.
“I started playing because my brother played in high school and I wanted to be just like him because I thought he was the coolest person ever growing up,” said Torres-Brown.
While she may have only started playing in her freshman year of high school, she realized that playing rugby could be something she could pursue in college.
“Throughout high school, I started getting invited to USA camps. It’s selective and they pick players
from each state,” said Torres-Brown. “Also, when I got selected to play in Ireland, I was like okay, I can do something with this.”
All those years of going to camps and playing on teams outside of her high
school have brought her to this moment of being named the NIRA Player of the Week.
Torres-Brown was not informed of the award until she was told by a friend who had seen that she had won the award by a social media post.
“Before I saw it on Instagram one of my friends saw it and texted me,” said Torres-Brown. “When I saw the post, my jaw dropped, I couldn’t believe it.”
While for some playing a Division One sport may be overwhelming, for Torres-Brown, balance is the most important aspect of being a college athlete.
“When people think of student-athletes, they may think you’re going to have no time in your schedule and it’s only going to be either you’re on the field or in the classroom, but I think I have a good balance. And because I played sports all through high school, I have always been busy, and I just learned how to juggle that,” said Torres-Brown.
Even amid her own great start to the season, Torres-Brown made it clear that as great as personal achievements are she hopes that she and her team can keep playing well.
“Right now, we are having the most successful season that we have had in a while. We are three and zero right now and we are just trying to make it as far as we can. The squad this year is filled with a ton of incredible athletes, and I think that we can go all the way,” said Torres-Brown.
Torres-Brown and the women’s rugby team look to go to 4-0 as they travel to Quinnipiac to face the Bobcats on Saturday, Sept. 30.
Sacred Heart Athletics contributed to this article.