BUILDING BLOCKS: Faith Lutheran College's Under-15 rugby union side.
BUILDING BLOCKS: Faith Lutheran College's Under-15 rugby union side. Contributed

Faith measure rugby success by growth of character

RUGBY UNION: Faith Lutheran College, Plainland don't just judge success on how many trophies they win at the end of each season, but also by the growth of their players as young men off the field.

The school's rugby union program has gone from strength to strength since being established five years ago and the latest mark of their development is the selection of four players to represent Met West this year.

Under-15 representatives Lenny Koivi and Kip Lowe and Under-18 representatives Ethan Foxwell and Joel Brett are the first union players from Faith to ever pull on the Met West jersey.

Upon entering the Greater Brisbane Conference competition in 2013, the school adopted union alongside its existing rugby league program.

Faith's Head of Sport Anthony Jeffes said while it was hard to convince lads from a league-mad region to try a new code, once they get a taste of it they were hooked.

"For us it's not so much about the sport but it's about using the sport as a vehicle to create good people... in order to help them grow as young men,” Jeffes said.

Coach Thomas Kent said although Faith had established themselves as the dominant force in the GBC competition, they were always looking for opportunities to test their squads.

They regularly seek trial games against school rugby powerhouses from Brisbane and Ipswich and are targeting improvement in the Confraternity Shield carnival. There are also plans for a girl's program.

"It's gotten to the stage where winning premierships is no longer an accurate measure of success within the program,so we have had to rethink and redefine what success is,” Kent said.

"One of our early goals was trying to get some of the boys represented in the Met West teams but success for us is based on the kind of men that come out at the end of six years of playing rugby with us.

"It's a good indicator for the other boys, that they can play in this small rugby comp and be from out here, where there's not much rugby, and can still get into a Met West team which is full of players from big schools in Ipswich and Brisbane.

"The idea is we want to develop a positive culture through our rugby league and union programs... and build it through the school. The core values of rugby fit really well with the core values of our school community.”

The U15 and First XV sides are eyeing back to back premierships on home soil this weekend, as a part of the GBC sport finals being held at the college.


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