Club Sports Grow in Size and Competitiveness
August 21, 2023 — Marist enables students to enjoy athletic competition at all levels, whether you’re a Division I athlete or simply enjoy a pickup basketball game. That desire to be active and compete in your favorite sport has fueled rapid growth in the College’s club sports offerings.
Each year, more than 500 students actively participate in a total of 18 club sports, enabling them to sustain their athletic engagement without the time commitments and prerequisites associated with Division I Athletics.
While many colleges offer club sports programs, what sets Marist apart is the extensive offerings — from dance team to fencing or cheerleading to golf — as well as travel experiences that mirror varsity programs. Club sports provide students with a competitive outlet and cultivate a strong sense of community.
“The club sports teams involve a great deal of planning, organization, and leadership from the students,” said Julie Byron, Assistant Athletic Director for Intramurals, Club Sports, and Camps. “We have traditional sports such as soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, and hockey, as well as some less mainstream options like rugby, ultimate frisbee, equestrian, esports, and skiing. Our students are dedicated and passionate about their respective sports.”
Fun AND Highly Competitive
While the social experiences and teamwork are a major part of the program, the competition level is also high. Here are a few highlights of last year’s winning teams:
- The men’s rugby team went undefeated in the regular season and claimed the conference championship, advancing to the National Collegiate Rugby National Championship Tournament.
- Equestrian, earned the year-end Reserve High Point College honors for the region. Eight Red Fox riders advanced to the Regional Championship.
- Women’s Club Lacrosse team completed its fifth season receiving an at-large bid to compete at the first annual Women’s Collegiate Lacrosse Organization (WCLO) National Championship.
- Marist Esports saw their Overwatch and Valorant teams advance to the MAAC Championship and the program earned its third consecutive “Program of the Year” honor.
- Members of the cheerleading and dance teams traveled to Ireland to support the Women’s Basketball Team in the MAAC/Atlantic Sun Dublin Basketball Challenge. The dance team also won two regional first-place awards.
- Women’s club lacrosse qualified for the national tournament in Texas in the spring, making it all the way to the semi-finals.
“Texas was an amazing experience with some of my best friends,” said Haley Fasano ’24, who sits on the executive board for women’s club lacrosse and soccer. “I'm also really appreciative that Marist cares about their club sports enough to give us opportunities to create new teams and fly us to other states in order to play. Club sports are not a given at many other schools, so I am extremely grateful for the support we receive.”
“I met some of my best friends at tryouts and we started our own tradition of having pre-show sleepovers,” said Rory Woods ’25, an equestrian rider who competed in the national tournament in Kentucky. “Because we must get up incredibly early for shows, we would have so much fun walking to the bus in the dark at 5 a.m.”
“We have won our league for the past two years,” said skier Chase Muller ‘25. “I swept the podium this year winning every race of the season except one, where I placed third.”
The clubs are student-run, adding a leadership and development component to the collegiate experience. A full rundown of Marist’s club sports offerings can be found here.
Students interested in trying out for a club sport can sign up at the Activities Fair on Friday, Sept. 1 from 3-6 p.m.