Kris Raso, a sophomore rugby star at Rowan University, has been selected to play among a few elite rugby players on the Philadelphia Elite 7s Team. Raso and his teammates will participate in an exclusive sevens tournament “Elite City Sevens” to compete for a chance to represent the United States at Premiership Rugby’s World Club 7s at Twickenham Stadium in England. The tournament will be held at Houston Sports Park in Houston, Texas on Friday June 6 and Saturday June 7.
U.S. All Star team members are compromised of the best players from the surrounding areas of each regional team. Tryouts for the Philadelphia Elite 7s were held in early April and consisted of testing for fitness, speed and technical skills followed by a series of scrimmages. Raso was the only member of the Rowan Rugby team to be chosen to represent the Philadelphia region.
Rowan University offers men’s rugby as a club sport. Raso began his rugby career during his freshman year at Rowan in the second game of the season where he acquired the nickname “The Future.” Senior Marty Marcinkiewicz awarded Raso the nickname after decided he would become the future of Rowan Rugby.
After declining a football scholarship at a different school, Raso chose rugby after watching a friend play for La Salle University.
“I figured since I had played football all of my life, rugby would be an easy transition. I was completely wrong! It took a lot of practice and explanation from the coaches, captains and teammates to make me the player I am today,” said Raso.
During the fourth game of his first season playing rugby, Raso found himself on the starting lineup and eventually helped the team finish 7th in the nation. He led the team this season with 24 tries.
Kris attended high school at St. Augustine Prep in Richland where he was a varsity starting linebacker and running back on the school’s football team. He currently resides in Tuckerton.