CPC Featured Player Q&A: Ceara Lafferty

Full Name (plus any rugby nickname(s)): Ceara “8Foot” Lafferty

Hometown: Rome, Italy
Position(s) played: Lock, 8

All Blues since: 7s since 2016, 15s since this season

  8Foot fending off an opponent for Cal. Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

8Foot fending off an opponent for Cal. Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

All Blues: When and how did you first start playing rugby?  What got you into it?

8Foot: I’ve been playing team sports for most of my life and have loved every minute of it, so when I decided that I wanted to go to Cal, my dad had a feeling I would want to continue pursuing that passion. He discovered that Cal had a club rugby team and, to be honest, I was really skeptical of it when he first mentioned it. When I was recruited by a rugby player during my first week as a freshman, my skepticism turned into curiosity and I decided to dive in headfirst to a rugby practice. I was brought there by a hunch and stayed because of the strength and empowerment I feel every time I’m on the pitch, and because of the open-minded people that make up the rugby community.

  8Foot and the Cal Babies. Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

8Foot and the Cal Babies. Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

AB: Did you play any sports prior to rugby?

8’: I played varsity basketball, soccer, and volleyball all throughout high school. I thought I would be dedicated to being a baller forever, but I found rugby and never looked back.

 

AB: How did you first find out about the All Blues? What made you come out here and join us?

8’: I found out through the Cal to All Blues pipeline! It’s a real thing.

 Rugby strong! A skills break led to some shenanigans from the forwards. Photo modified from the All Blues Rugby Instagram (@allbluesrugby)

Rugby strong! A skills break led to some shenanigans from the forwards. Photo modified from the All Blues Rugby Instagram (@allbluesrugby)

AB: What’s your most memorable time thus far with the All Blues?

8’: I’m sure this sounds hella cheesy, but honestly, every moment spent with the All Blues is better than the last. This team has made me feel so welcomed and loved and valued and it means so much coming from a group of such amazing and talented individuals. [When we first had that double header this season], I played in both the D2 game against the Amazons and the WPL game against Life West and I truly did not know if I was going to make it through the last 10 minutes of the WPL game. My motivation came from the communication and positive attitudes of the people playing next to me, telling me that I could push through. I was able to put work in on the pitch until the final whistle because my teammates believed in me.

  8Foot on the attack at a game vs. Santa Rosa.  Photo: Kyra Trowbridge

8Foot on the attack at a game vs. Santa Rosa.  Photo: Kyra Trowbridge

AB: What is the best advice you have ever received about playing rugby?

8’: There are two pieces of advice that I always carry with me on the pitch. The first comes from a fellow All Blue, friend, and rugby philosopher, Frieda Fetuu: always stay humble. The second piece of advice was said to me by Mari Triplett, an All Blue and former coach of mine. When she was coaching at Cal, she would always say, “Saw your leg off!” That was her way of telling us to do WHATEVER it takes to do what needs to be done. Saw your leg off for the ball, for the scrum, and most importantly, for your teammates. I value both of these pieces of wisdom not only because they came from women I respect immensely, but because they remind me that I play not only for my teammates, but for all of the women who have come before me and will come after me.

  Seriously, that fend though! Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

Seriously, that fend though! Photo courtesy of Ceara Lafferty

AB: What skills are you working on/would like to work on right now?

8’: I’m really working on trying to be a vocal leader. The fact that so many of the All Blues are great leaders has made that a lot easier.

 

AB: What is your favorite non-rugby activity? Do you have any passions besides rugby?

8’: It kind of seems like my whole life revolves around rugby sometimes, but I swear I enjoy doing other things too. I’m super passionate about music. I love to sing, play guitar, go to concerts, and discover new music. I also am trying to get into photography! I also adore food: cooking it, learning about it, watching shows about it, and, most of all, eating it. I’m into exploring too, especially in new cities and the outdoors. 

 

AB: Any other fun facts about yourself you’d like to share with us?

8’: I lived in Rome, Italy for 5 years. That’s where I went to high school and it’s the longest I stayed in one place while growing up. Also, if you didn’t know already, I’m 8 feet tall.