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Friday, July 21, 2017

Red River Adds Glendale

The Glendale Merlins will be playing in DI next season. The Merlins, the new name of all non-Major League Rugby teams run by the City of Glendale, have joined the Red River Conference for 2017-18. The team, then called the Raptors, has never really played a DI schedule but their elite team did play in competitions like the Pacific Rugby Premiership and the Major Rugby Championship. Given that Denver is actually relatively close to Texas and that Texas provides good competition this makes sense. The Raptors MLR team will also be traveling to Texas for matches.

Joining the Merlins in the Red River DI are the Dallas Reds, Dallas Harlequins, Austin Blacks, Austin Huns, and Little Rock. The Arkansas side gained promotion from DII while HARC were relegated to DII. With MLR coming on board the make-up of the players in the division could be different in years past. The Huns MLR team will draw from both Austin competitions while Dallas will do the same with the Reds and the Harlequins. The Raptors will have the best talent from the Merlins.

Eagles Confirm APC, November Tests

U.S.A. Rugby has confirmed what we passed along earlier in the week that the Eagles will take on Germany and Georgia in their November test series. The U.S. will play Germany in Frankfurt on November 18th and then Georgia in Tbilisi on November 25th. TIAR has been able to confirm that there will only be two November matches rather than the traditional three.

The match against Germany could be an interested one for the Americans. There are several U.S. military bases near the area and that could mean a large turnout of American support. It will also be interesting in that the U.S. will face a German team that could pose problems but one in which the U.S. should beat relatively easily. The match in Georgia will, as always, be difficult.

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American Duo Gaining Experience In New Zealand

It's been a long tradition for Americans to head overseas to get a high-level of rugby experience. Many Americans have gone to Ireland to do just that and a number have also gone to New Zealand. AIC alums Skyler Adams and Kurtis Werner are two of the latest players to travel to the home of the All Blacks. Both players are training at the BNZ Crusaders International High-Performance Unit and are set to play with local clubs teams as well. Both will be playing with Marist Albion in Christchurch. Other nations represented at the IHPU include Argentina, Japan, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Ireland, Scotland, England, Wales, Fiji, and Canada.

Adams told TIAR that he's "The experience has been awesome spending 8 hours a day training is any players dream. Camp has been a unique combination of strength and conditioning, run-catch-pass training, defense, sports psychology, character development, and shadowing of the Crusaders and their Academy players. We get to watch the Crusaders train and see how they run their side and the professionalism that they aim for."

If all goes well Adams and Werner will hope to emulate the path of Eric Fry. He played club rugby in New Zealand before turning that into an opportunity in the Mitre 10 Cup and ultimately contracts in Europe.

Pangelinan Latest To Join Houston Strikers

Press Release

Strikers Rugby are pleased to announce the signing of Zach Pangelinan a USA Rugby Eagle. Zach has been a stalwart of a successful OMBAC Rugby team for many seasons including last season when they won the California Cup. More recently he has been playing for Randwick Rugby Club in the prestigious Australia Shute Shield.

“Thank you to the coaching staff for giving me the opportunity to play some competitive rugby. I am very excited to make the move to Houston and represent the Strikers in their inaugural season. I can't wait to suit up with my new teammates/brothers and get down to business. See you soon Houston!.”

Coach Fitzpatrick said, “I am pleased to be working with Zach again. He is a talented footballer with great attacking flair and an eye for a gap in the defense. He is also a first rate goal kicker and will add great value to the Strikers squad on and off of the pitch. We are delighted to have him join us. ”

Weekend Television Listings

Super Rugby enters the playoffs this week. All matches will be on ESPN3/WatchESPN with two of them actually at reasonable times.

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

  • Crusaders vs. Highlanders, 3:35 a.m. et/12:35 a.m. pt (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN)
  • Lions vs. Sharks, 8:30 a.m. et/5:30 a.m. pt (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN)
  • Stormers vs. Cheifs, 11:00 a.m. et/8:a0 a.m. pt (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN)
  • Santa Monica 7s, 3:35 p.m. et/12:35 p.m. pt (live on The Rugby Channel) 

Opening Kick

Opening Kick is a segment devoted to bringing you all Eagles and U.S.A. Rugby news in one location. It is brought to you everyday by Rugby Marketplace, your independent rugby store

National Teams/MLR/ODAs:

Pat Clifton has an excellent and must-read article on why change is needed for the U.S.A. Rugby Board of Directors.

The 2016-17 College All-Americans have been announced. This is the cream of the college crop.

The locations and dates for the U.S.A. Rugby assessment camps are out


Lots of 7s action last weekend. In the Northeast Old Blue and Bulldog claims Club 7s Nationals spots

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Pacific South, North 7s Qualifier Recap

Pacific South

Belmont Shore continue to win in the Pacific South taking their third straight tournament. This one came at the Sunsplash 7s, their home tournament. Second place at the tournament was Santa Monica who are also looking good as Belmont Shore won 26-5. Santa Monica are duking it out with OMBAC and the OC Ravens for the last spot in the Club 7s Nationals but with Santa Monica having a good edge. Expect both Belmont Shore and Santa Monica to be the qualifiers.

The San Diego Surfers dominated the women's bracket once again.

Pacific North

Pacific Northwest

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