About Us

The Stingrays began in 1962 when Rugby League was first introduced into Stella Maris School, Shellharbour.

 


Back in 1962 the Parish Priest of Shellharbour Father Martin Weatherall together with Brian Creagan then of Dunmore, John O'Dwyer and others made the first steps to establish the game in the school. Teams were entered in the Illawarra Convent Schools Competition a great nursery for the game over many years. A number of young players who gained their grounding in league at Stella Maris reached higher honours including ex NSW and South Sydney forward David Boyle and ex Steeler Chris Machlin-Shaw.

 


As a school team several titles have been won. Many of the past players who went on to play 1st grade in the area have children at the club. Father Weatherall never believed in sponsors and the kids wore the same jumpers until they were falling apart. These days jumpers are replaced every 3 years.

In the early 90's the Catholic school competition disbanded and all those school teams were invited to become affiliated with Illawarra Junior Rugby League competition. Being from Group 7 territory Stella Maris Stingrays opted to play in Group 7. As Group 7 had no Under 6's we continued that age group in the Illawarra competition.

 

 

Through the 90's the Stingrays were simply a school club with all of their players coming from the school. Of the many Catholic school teams that used to have League teams only St Johns, St Pius and Stingrays are left. All of these clubs now have children from outside the school.

In 2002 the committee made a decision to change the name from Stella Maris Stingrays to the Stingrays JRLFC Shellharbour after the school encouraged not to use Stella Maris when seeking sponsorship. In order to continue to survive the club knew it was necessary to attract more children from outside Stella Maris School.

 


The Stingrays started with teams from Under 6's to Under 12's. We have continually grown as a club and now field teams in every junior age group. Whilst we have a lot of children from Stella Maris we have many children from all the schools in the area.
The Stingrays are proud of being a Family club, and of our History. We have many family events throughout the year including nights out and our Parents Touch Day.

 


In 2012 we celebrated our 50th year in Rugby League, during this celebration our first life members were announced, Father Martin Weatherall, and our long running club President, Scott McLaurin.

 


In 2013 we expanded within our Junior Club into the Senior Competition, fielding an U18’s team. This team was made up of many of our Junior’s who had stopped playing League for a number of years. In 2014 The Stingrays expanded into the South Coast Group 7 Senior League forming the Stingrays RLFC Shellharbour. Both clubs while separate entities, unlike other Clubs work closely together and have a developed in a short time strong support from all playing and family members of each club. This support between both clubs will be what will ensure the Stingrays brand has a successful and prosperous future.

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