As another round of graduation ceremonies conclude, once again, we say farewell to the Wake Forest Rugby seniors of 2014.
Andrew Estes Andrew was introduced to rugby his freshman year at Gonzaga High School and joined Wake Forest Rugby immediately after arriving on campus. Playing hooker and backrow during his 4 year playing career, teammates were always confident in Andrew’s fitness and tackling ability. Graduating with a degree in Mathematical Business, minor in Computer Science, Andrew will begin his professional career in Charlotte, NC with Bank of America.
Dwaine Hodges This native North Carolinian did not find rugby until his junior year at Wake Forest; but Dwaine’s excitement and willingness to learn quickly saw him earn a starting spot on the front row. Dwaine was the 2013-2014 recipient of the Best & Fairest, which recognized his leadership and exemplary work ethic. With a degree in Chemistry, Dwaine has accepted a project management position with Epic Systems and is moving to Michigan to begin work in July.
Rob Kelly Growing up in Washington DC, Rob was a part of his high school’s inaugural rugby team. After missing the fall season of his freshman year at Wake, an email from former coach Pat Kane reminded Kelly of the camaraderie between rugby teammates and led him to take up the sport again. During the 2010-2011 season, his peers recognized Rob as the Most Improved Player of the Year. The following year, Kelly received 1st team All-Conference honors after his performance at flyhalf during the 2012 season. Although stepping away from rugby for the 2013 fall season to concentrate on graduate school, Rob rejoined his teammates one last time for the 2014 spring sevens circuit. His academic career concentrated on Spanish with a minor in Entrepreneurship & Social Enterprise. This year, Rob is receiving a MA in Management and will shortly begin working for E&J Gallo Winery at their Charlotte distribution office.
Bryce Lambert Originally from Oregon, Bryce was a two-sport athlete (soccer, baseball) in high school and first picked up rugby his freshman year at Wake Forest. As Chemistry major, Lambert was also a dedicated team leader serving 3 years as Treasurer. In his senior year, Bryce received 1st team All-Conference honors as a Utility Forward and was recognized by his peers as Most Outstanding Forward. While plans are not yet confirmed, Bryce plans to attend med school in the near future.
Liam McIntyre At the age of 13, while he and his family were living London, Liam developed a strong passion for the sport of rugby, always knowing it was something he wanted to continue in college. In fact, Liam’s decision to attend Wake Forest was guided by the team’s competitiveness and commitment versus another university where rugby was not taken as seriously. After finishing the fall 2013 fifteens season, Liam decided to spend his final semester on the sidelines supporting his teammates during the sevens season, only to come out of retirement on two occasions. The first encore was to face the Atlanta Collegiate All-Stars prior to the USA vs Uruguay match. Second, and most memorable, was during the ACRL Sevens Championship tournament. After losing two teammates to injury on day one of the tournament, Liam stepped up be the eighth man on the roster during day two and put in a courageous effort with his fellow seniors. The two-time Conference All-Academic Team recipient is a double major in Economics and History. Liam has already accepted a position at Drobny Capital, an asset management and consulting company focused on global macro and commodity hedge funds.
John McMurray Like other Gonzaga classmates, McMurray began playing rugby as a freshman in high school. Again, it was the commitment to excellence that attracted John to Wake Forest Rugby where he received All-Conference honors for 4 consecutive years 2011 & 2012 1st team All-Conference Fullback 2013 (spring) Honorable Mention All-Conference Fullback 2013 (fall) 1st team All-Conference Utility Back
Additionally, McMurray received the following accolades from his teammates: 2009-2010 Rookie of the Year 2011-2012 Most Outstanding Back 2014 Sevens Top Points Scorer
With a bachelors in Economics and a MA in Management, John will move to Chicago to start working for Associated Bank as a portfolio manager in their healthcare commercial banking group.
Ryan Tacon Ryan and his London classmates had a taste of rugby long before getting their official start on the 6th grade school team. Quickly becoming a huge part of his life, Tacon knew he wanted to continue playing rugby once he returned the USA for college and an introductory email from Coach Kane solidified that decision. In 2010, Ryan was selected for the North Carolina College All-stars playing Outside Center and also received Rookie of the Year honors from his Demon Deacon teammates. During the 2013 season opener versus Virginia, Tacon suffered a concussion that would cut his season short and force him to spend the rest of his senior year on the sidelines. Ryan stayed very busy studying Biology with a minor in Chemistry, Neuroscience and Spanish. He now plans to serve as a medical interpreter before going on to study medicine in 2015.
Jack Zimmerman Before becoming a Demon Deacon, this Connecticut native first picked up rugby at Greenwich High School. After stepping away from rugby during the spring semester of his freshman year, Zimmerman quickly returned to action and became a leader on and off the field. Most recently Jack has served as the team president and co-captain during the fall and spring seasons. While studying language arts, Zimmerman, along with two other classmates, created Swizzlers Food Company. Shortly after graduation, Jack and his business partners will be moving to Washington DC where they hope to develop their food truck business.
Wake Forest Rugby would also like to recognize two former players whose careers ended prematurely due to injury:
Robert Elmore Robert played lock and back row for the Deacons and was voted the Most Improved Player for the 2010-2011 season. In the spring of 2014, he rejoined his teammates to attend the USA versus Uruguay in Atlanta. Robert is graduating with a degree in Economics
Tim Zage During the fall 2013 season, Tim continued to support the team as Match Secretary and supervised the game day preparations. Tim is graduating with a degree in Business and Enterprise Management.
Join us in congratulating these young men for their outstanding academic achievements as Wake Forest University students. We wish them all the best in the future.