Meet Kara McAuliffe

  • Kara McAuliffe | Charles River Rugby

Kara has been retired from Charles River Rugby for a little over a year and a half after having played on the team for 8 years. It all started for her in 2002, at Northeastern University, when legendary Mike Roy informed her she was too girly and probably “couldn’t handle it”. Kara went on to play for her University team and joined Charles River Rugby after graduating in 2005.

In the early days of Charles River, she could be found almost anywhere on the pitch: Inside Center, Outside Center, Fullback and then finally once the team was firmly established, she took her place in the pack and became the forceful utility forward we all know her to be. Claiming flanker as favorite position, Kara spent a good majority of her career in the lock position or playing 8 when it was needed. A constant on the roster, a starting A side player (and usually B side as well!), Kara knew how to work hard, play hard and give everything on the field. Even after retirement, she still gives to the team and in 2014 could frequently be found guest coaching.

For most of her Charles River Rugby career, Kara lived and worked on the Cape. She would make the 150 mile round trip trek two-three times a week, for practices and games. Each time driving like a woman with a mission, from home to Moakley park, WIT field, Somerville, that random field in Dorchester and any other small section of grass we were able to play on! By far the furthest travelled from any past or current rat and ultimately, this dedication along with her ability and willingness to step outside of her comfort zone and play any position in the pack led her to be given the “unsung hero” award.

Since the dawn of time (or so you would believe), Kara has been named Charles River Drinking Sensei. Rivaled by only a few, but never beaten, her ability to chug a pint of any type of drink up beer is widely known throughout the team and fans. Under her watchful eye, fear is felt by all the Bitches of the Pitch that stand in line nervously awaiting the boat race… because Charles River NEVER loses the social.

In the words of Kara herself… “Rugby has taught me how to be strong and push my body to the limit, and how to rely on 14 other women on the field and know that we are all in it together. The bonds formed in rugby seem to be unbreakable and those women that you see on the field could be the ones that you see next to you years and years later, celebrating weddings, breakups, babies and everything in between.”

Since retiring from the team, Kara can be found playing in the annual Can Ams tournament where we all drool over her abilities and try to get her drunk enough to agree to play with us again, or more regularly doing yardwork and home ownership projects on her gorgeous Cape house. Seasonally, she can be found on the Killington Ski slopes with old girl “Smo” and spending time on the secluded beaches known only to the locals on the Cape.