Women’s Rugby Unveils Class of 2023

The women's rugby team claps together before its game vs. Army
Photo by Gil Talbot

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Combining with a talented group of returning players, Harvard women's rugby has revealed its incoming class of eight first-year student-athletes: Darby Eck, Kim Hartung, Lucy Jacobsen, Heidi Lucas, Brogan Mior, Achele Agada, Alex Pipkin and Jordan Roe.

"We are beyond excited to welcome the class of 2023's to the Harvard rugby family," said head coach Mel Denham. "This exceptional class brings a wealth of experience, game understanding and commitment to excellence which will help us continue to raise the level of our training environment, and will provide them with the opportunity to make an impact right away."

The eight incoming players will be welcomed by a group that captured both the Ivy 15s and sevens championships in 2018-19, while finishing second and third nationally, respectively, in the two seasons.

Darby Eck | Sparta, Mich. | Sparta
Captained the Sparta-Rock rugby team in 2017 and 2018, leading the team to a state championship in the latter year…Won team MVP with Sparta-Rock in both 2017 and 2018…Earned letters in competitive cheer, golf and softball…Four-year class president at Sparta High School…Volunteered her time to the Special Olympics for five years…Received four academic letters.

Kim Hartung | Smiths Falls, Ontario | Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute
Member of SFDCI Redhawks Rugby Team as it won the Eastern Ontario Secondary School Athletic Association gold medal in 2018…Earned the Ontario Secondary School Athletic Association bronze medal in 2017 and 2018…SFDCI Rugby Most Improved Player award recipient in both 2018 and 2019…Also wrestled in high school, winning team Player of the Year in 2018…SFDCI Medal of Distinction winner…Co-President of SFDCI Student Council her senior year…Graduated from the Royal Canadian Air Cadets at the rank of Warrant Officer Second Class.

Lucy Jacobsen | Boise, Idaho | Capital
Three-year all-state honoree...Four-year letterwinner at Capital High School on a team that celebrated its 7th-consecutive state title her senior year…Two-year captain of the varsity rugby team…Also captained the varsity basketball team her senior year…Played three years at center for A-Zone club basketball team…DECA state champion and two-time national finalist…Graduated top 10 in her class.

Heidi Lucas | Smiths Falls, Ontario | Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute
Captained the 2018-19 Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute Female Rugby Team as it won the Rothesay Netherwood …2019 SFDCI Senior MVP…Gold medalist at the 2017 Eastern Ontario Secondary School Athletic Association Tournament…Bronze medalist in the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Association Tournament in 2017 and 2018…2018 MVP of the D&G Fall 7s Rugby Tournament…2017 SFDCI Junior Leadership Award recipient…2019 Colin Hood OFSAA School Sport Award winner…Also wrestled in high school, winning the 2018 Eastern Ontario Secondary School Athletic Association Tournament…2019 Ontario Scholar…SFDCI Redhawk Medal of Distinction recipient….SFDCI Gold Honour Roll for four year.

Brogan Mior | Okotoks, Alberta | Foothills Composite
Member of Team Canada's under-18 7s and under-20 15s national teams ... Competed in youth Olympics qualifiers with Canada, helping the team advance to the youth Olympic games ... Captained the Foothills Lions Rugby Club for three seasons, winning the Las Vegas Invitational Rugby Tournament in 2019 in the high school open division…Member of Team Alberta U18s as the team won the 2017 Canadian Rugby Championship…Went undefeated and won the Alberta U15 provincial championship with the Foothill Lions in the fall 7s season of 2016…Clearwater Cup 7s Tournament MVP 2019…Foothill Falcons varsity rugby MVP in 2019…Foothill female athlete of the year runner-up…Competed in four varsity sports her senior year including rugby, volleyball, basketball, and track & field…FCHS Shirley Olson Memorial Award for Excellence in Athletics, Academics, Leadership and Citizenship recipient…Named to the FCHS Principal's List in 2018 and 2019.

Achele Agada | Harrogate, United Kingdom | Harrogate Grammar School
Selected for England Rugby's U18 Centre of Excellence Program…Played on Yorkshire U18 women's rugby team for all three eligible seasons…Captained the Yorkshire U18s her final year and helped the team complete three-consecutive unbeaten seasons…Played senior rugby at Harrogate in just her second season involved in the sport…Guided Harrogate to two straight unbeaten league seasons and a promotion to the second-tier league in the nation…Head girl at Harrogate…Senior Victrix Ludorum and GCSE Prizewinner…Spent free time volunteering at local hospitals and children's camps in high school.

Alex Pipkin | Joppa, Md. | Harford Technical
Captained the North Bay Girls U19 squad for three seasons and led the team to three-straight Maryland state titles, a 2017 Division II Club National Championship, a 2018 Division I Club Championship Game appearance and a 2019 High school Rugby 7s Championship…Two-year captain of the Maryland Girls Rugby All-State team as it was crowned regional champions both years…Played on the Atlantis Girls Rugby U18 Elite Rugby team as the squad won the 2017 and 2018 HSBC High School Championships, was a finalist at the 2017 Paris World Games and won the 2019 Tropical 7s Tournament…16-time Honor Roll student…Harford Technical High School Gold Medal recipient…AP Scholar with Distinction…Volunteered her time at various youth organizations.

Jordan Roe | Devon, Pa. | Conestoga
Varsity rugby captain as a junior and senior in 2018 and 2019…Runners-up at the 2019 Pennsylvania State Rugby Championships…Won Rookie of the Year in 2017 as a sophomore then back-to-back team MVP awards in 2018 and 2019…Named to West Chester High School Rugby 7s All-Tournament team in 2018…Also played four years of varsity soccer, serving as team captain her senior year and was named to the All-League 3rd team…AP Scholar…Senior class Co-President and Treasurer…National Honor Society member…Volunteered with the Athletes Helping actively and Best Buddies clubs…Great-Great-Grandfather, John B. Kelly Sr., was a three-time Olympic gold medalist in single and double sculls…Great-Grandfather, John B. Kelly Jr., rowed for Penn and was an Olympic bronze medalist in single sculls…Father, George, played professional lacrosse with the Philadelphia Wings…Uncle, Tom Marechek, also played professional lacrosse and is in the NCAA, US and Canadian Lacrosse Halls of Fame.