WAVERLEY: Despite missing two years of rugby due to knee surgery, Brooklyn Peyton’s hard work and determination upon returning to the pitch was enough for the St. Francis Xavier X-Women rugby team to know they had to make her a part of their program.
Peyton admitted her first few games back were not the best, but what would one expect missing that much game time due to her injury.
“Mike Cavanagh (the coach for X) saw my potential and my drive,” said Peyton, in her senior year at Lockview High. “It really said a lot that he really did want me for how I was playing and leading the team.”
She announced her commitment to the X-Women’s rugby program recently after mulling over offers from other universities across Canada, including X’s rival Acadia University. The furthest that showed interest was the University of Calgary.
Peyton started playing rugby in Grade 9, where she was in the starting lineup. She was also a member of the N.S. Keltics team.
She sent out recruitment forms in October to about 12-13 schools, and 10 replied to her.
“We started having zoom calls with the coaches. I got to talk to them about their programs, which was fantastic,” she said. “After that, just during the past two months I have been choosing between X and Acadia. They both have fantastic programs.”
Peyton praised both rugby programs, explaining that pre-COVID19 X would send their team to California every Thanksgiving for game training.
She said X won out between the two universities because they had the better academic program for her. She can minor in sport psychology or sport management, and major in Human Kinetics.
“It’s a great opportunity,” she said.
Peyton said her and dad Larry have been able to go up to X once or twice and step on the field.
“I turned my back and saw the entire stands, and I could just hear the chants ‘X. X. X,’” she said with exuberance evident on her face and in her voice. “It gave me chills down my spine. It was fantastic.
“Being around the campus just felt like home.”
For the full-length interview, please check out the video inserted in this story. Or click here to go to the YouTube version.