by Scott Eldredge
Sports writer

We’ve all probably heard the famous commentary on winning made by UCLA Bruins Head Football coach Henry Russell (Red) Sanders, "Sure, winning isn't every thing, It's the only thing." But, don’t tell that to the Nashville Grizzlies. They prove time and time again that simply playing rugby brings the most rewards.

While many of us spent Memorial Day Weekend hanging out with friends and family at backyard barbecues, Nashville’s own gay rugby team was logging 1500 miles en route to Wisconsin to face the Madison Minotaurs. Going into the match, the Grizzlies knew the Minotaurs had a score to settle.

“When the Minotaurs came to Nashville for a match in 2007, the Grizzlies celebrated our first victory,” said Grizzlies President Jon Glassmeyer.

This time in Madison, the Minotaurs returned the favor, with the final score Madison 33 – Nashville 0.

Despite the loss, the Grizzlies remain upbeat. Glassmeyer reports the team made it back to Nashville in one piece with no injuries on the pitch or in the vans. He says participating with the Grizzlies is more than just playing the game on the field, with the social time off the field being just as important.

“The Madison team showed the Grizzlies a great time off the pitch. I heard at least four or five Madison folks comment on how the Grizzlies really knew how to liven up the third half.”

It seems the Grizzlies identify more with another famous quote from the legendary, Tennessee-born sportswriter Grantland Rice, “For when the one great scorer comes to write against your name, he marks - not that you won or lost - but how you played the game.”

The Nashville Grizzlies are officially off for the summer, but will be holding various fundraising events to support their team and Nashville Pride. In addition, some players will be organizing some games around a version of rugby called “7’s”. Get more information at grizzliesrugby.org.

This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

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