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Friday, October 20, 2017

West Coast 7s Preview

The West Coast 7s kicks off this weekend with the action set for Treasure Island. The tournament has steadily grown since inception a few years back and is now widely recognized as one of the top college tournaments in the country. In many respects it only falls behind the CRC and the College 7s Nationals in terms of talent. This year is no expect ion with some big teams playing. The tournament will be shown on The Rugby Channel.

Pool A: Cal, Arizona State, UC-Davis, San Diego

Even though Cal are sending out a Freshman-Sophomore side this weekend they will still be the favorites to take the tournament and Pool A. They have so much talent and playing so close to home they are going to have plenty of supporters. Even more, many of their young players have good experience playing 7s. The team that could challenge is UC-Davis. The Aggies have produced some very good sides and can make things happen. Arizona State is the wildcard. They've had to do some rebuilding but in years past have had success.

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Weekend Television Listings

Fans are going to have a variety of options this weekend for viewing. ESPN hasn't shown the Mitre 10 Cup nor the Currie Cup all year until now despite holding the rights. They will show the semi-finals of each competition. Additionally, Bledisloe III is on ESPN along with a couple of European matches. Domestically there are a few matches available. 

If you know of an event or a tournament that is not on our list, please share it with us at thisisamericanrugby@gmail.com.

  • Bay of Plenty, 9:35 p.m. et/6:35 p.m. pt (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN)
  • Northland vs. Wellington, 2:35 a.m. et (Saturday)/11:35 a.m. pt (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN)
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Thursday, October 19, 2017

Shalom Suniula Signs With Seattle

Press Release

Seattle Seawolves Rugby is thrilled to announce the signing of USA Rugby star Shalom Suniula. Coming from a family of rugby players, Shalom has made 18 appearances for the US national rugby union team. “Shalom is an exciting and skilled attacking player whose qualities should fit well into the vision of our style of game. His experience and intensely competitive nature will be an asset to our team as we embark on our MLR adventure,” said Tony Healy, the head coach of Seattle Seawolves Rugby.

Former captain of US 7s team, Shalom is excited about the new challenge, “I’m happy about the immediate opportunity the Seawolves & MLR provide to play at the highest level locally. I’m more excited about where this could go and the opportunities this will provide players in America moving forward." said Suniula at the time of announcement. Shalom, who is currently employed with Atavus Rugby, is also looking at the sport’s promising future in the USA. “Working at Atavus has given me the opportunity to work with well over 1,000 aspiring players per year, hoping to raise a young generation of Eagles who will hopefully go on and do 10 times better than I ever did,” said Shalom.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Warriors Name Alf Daniels Head Coach

Press Release

The Utah Warriors, a founding member of Major League Rugby (MLR), are excited to announce the appointment of Alf Daniels as Head Coach. Daniels will contribute a wealth of experience to the Warriors as he joins the team ahead of the MLR’s inaugural season.

A native of New Zealand, Daniels has coached at almost every level during his 30 year coaching career. After working for the New Zealand Police force, Daniels took a position as the Sports Coordinator at the Church College of New Zealand (CCNZ) working closely with their 1st XV (Varsity) Rugby team.

Since 2009, Daniels has served as a coach and administrator for the Waikato Rugby Union. He began as an assistant coach Waikato U20’s, and spent two years as Head Coach of the Development team before leading the provincial U19 team to three straight Jock Hobbs National U19 Championship finals, winning it all in 2016 and was awarded Kukri Representative Coach of the Year by Waikato Rugby

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Stars Name Men's Side For Central Coast 7s

The Stars Rugby 7s have named their men's roster for the upcoming Central Coast 7s. It's a very heavy American roster with a number of representatives from different parts of the country including Alabama, California, Oklahoma, Arizona, Colorado, and New York. There are also a couple of non-Americans on the roster with a few from Australia and one from Germany.  The Stars are putting both men's and women's teams in the tournament.

Roster: Najee Bissoon (Oklahoma/USA), Luc Desroches (USC/USA), Ben Ellermann (FC St. Pauli/Germany), Adam Gauder (Bond University/Australia), Jakeb Glaser (UAB/USA), Harry Higgins (Old Blue/USA), Chase Jollie (Wisconsin RC, USA), Brad Jones (Bond University/Australia), Regan Muir (Bond University/Australia), Jaime Serna (Principia/USA), Bailey Stringer (Arizona State/USA), Beau Vrbas (Glendale/USA)

Injury Reserves: Finau Makamaka (Randwick/Australia), Jacob Griffin (Warnervale/Australia)

Staff: Ivan Pomare (coach), Pete Hammond (assistant coach), Alex Flohr (physio), Liz Entwhistle (director)

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Eric Duechle Signs With Seattle

Press Release

Seattle Seawolves Rugby officially announces the signing of USA Rugby star Eric Duechle. The 31-year-old is a well-known name amongst U.S. rugby fans. He's played with Belmont Shore at the National Club 7s, played with the Eagles Selects at the Americas Rugby Championship, and is a long-standing member of the WCAP program as a member of the Air Force. “We are looking forward to welcoming Eric into our team. He is an exceptional athlete who is blessed with great speed and power. He has the potential to be a major contributor to the team's overall success”, said Tony Healy, the head coach of Seattle Seawolves Rugby. Standing tall at 6’5”, also popularly known as “The Beast” in rugby circuit, Eric sounds confident of good, consistent performances with the Seawolves Rugby Team. “I am really excited with the thought of pursuing excellence with the Seattle Seawolves," said Eric at the time of announcement.

We are proud to welcome Eric Duechle to the Seawolves family.

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Houston Rebrands as SaberCats, Release Pre-Season Schedule

Major League Rugby continues to offer some surprises. The Houston Strikers, who had managed to establish one of the biggest brands in the competition, is rebranding. The team will now be known as the Houston SaberCats. It's unclear the reason for the rebranding but it could be due to an old rugby team in Houston called the Strikers.

Additionally, the team is set to play a number of press-season matches against teams from the Pacific Northwest and the Capital Rugby Union. Starting on January 6th they will take on the Houston Saracens followed by the Vancouver Ravens, James Bay, the Capital Selects, the Chicago Lions, New Orleans Gold, and the Ontario Arrows along with a couple of teams to be determined. It's a robust pre-season schedule that will take advantage of the warmer weather in Houston. All of the matches will be played at Constellation Field (a baseball stadium) in Sugar Land, Texas.

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