Coming from Middletown, Rhode Island, Rugel has been one of the best closers in the Northeast 10 Conference, which has been one of the toughest baseball conferences in all of Division II. In 2014, Rugel continued his dominance, saving 13 games while striking out 37 batters over 24 appearances with the Stonehill Skyhawks.
Before the 2014 season, Rugel’s role in the Stonehill rotation alternated between the bullpen and the starting rotation. Despite completing two games as a starter in 2013, Rugel saved six games and struck out 62 batters over 67 innings, setting himself up to be the closer in 2014.
One of the four 2014 Gulls to come from Rhode Island, Rugel pitched for Middletown High School (Middletown, RI) before beginning his career with Stonehill. There, Rugel was named to the All-State, All-Division, and All-District teams, while winning the 2011 Newport County Player of the Year award.