Full Name: Florence Gomez
Hometown: Yigo, Guam
Position played: Center, Back Three
All Blues: When and how did you first start playing rugby? What got you into it? Florence: I was a late bloomer. I just started playing about four years ago, when I reached my dirty thirties. I was approached while out with my roommate by a rugger, not knowing that my roommate had played in college. She convinced me to check out one practice and I instantly fell in love.
AB: Did you play any sports prior to rugby? F: I’ve been playing sports since the age of four. My first sport was track, I’ve tried to play just about every sport they offered in schools but basketball and fast pitch softball where the only ones I stuck with. I ended up playing for a traveling softball team in the Navy after high school. Now rugby is the only sport I play.
AB: Do you have a philosophy/mindset when you practice and play rugby? F: When I play I just think about having fun, when you stop having fun you lose the love for playing. AB: How did you first find out about the All Blues? What made you come out here and join us? F: The All Blues are known nationwide; I’ve always heard good things about this team. I wasn’t sure what team I was going to play with when I moved to Berkeley. I decided to check out each team and choose from there but after one practice with the ABs I knew this is where I wanted to be. I loved the environment and the team was extremely welcoming.
AB: Is there a particular player and/or coach that has influenced your development as a player? In what way(s) did they help you? F: My first vet Kelly Sager is probably the most influential person. My first year playing we didn’t have a coach and I was the only rookie. She took me under her wing and taught me the game--mostly the rules and how to use them to my advantage.
Flo with her vet, Kelly Sager, at the Chattanooga Pitch A Tent 7s Tournament. Photo courtesy of Florence Gomez
AB: What is the best advice you have ever received about playing rugby? F: The best advice I’ve ever received is that I have more time than I think. AB: Any other fun facts about yourself you’d like to share with us? F: I am a sock enthusiast, I own a lot of socks lol.