O’Sullivan brings Eagles to Houston

Eddie O’Sullivan has brought 35 Eagle prospects with him to Houston this weekend for an intense training session designed to help build his squad and find depth for the 2011 Rugby World Cup campaign.

There will be two sessions each day, open to the public, on Saturday and Sunday. There is no charge to attend. Strake Jesuit and John Connolly are hosting the Eagles and O’Sullivan at 8900 Bellaire Blvd, Houston, TX .

Local players include Hunter Leland (ATM) and Gonzalo Ruiz (Quins) as well as several WRU players highlighted below.

Saturday 3rd April

9.30am- 11.30am Training
3.30pm- 5.30pm Training

Sunday 4th April

8.00am- 9.30am Training
10.30am-12.00pm Training

For Immediate Release
March 31, 2010

U.S. Men’s National Team Names Replacements for its Houston Assembly

BOULDER, Colo. – The U.S. Men’s National Rugby Team has named three replacement players for its first training camp of the season on April 2-4 at the Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston.

“There is always the possibility of injuries occurring during the season that will disrupt assemblies,” U.S. Eagles Head Coach Eddie O’Sullivan said. “Considering there was a full schedule of Rugby Super League and Division I fixtures last weekend and the fact that the U.S. Sevens Team were in action in Hong Kong, seeing just three injuries is very good. Of course it’s unfortunate for the players who have had to withdraw, but we should get an opportunity to look at them again in May. It also provides a great opportunity for the players who replaced them to be seen.”

The three players that have sustained injuries while playing over the course of the last week include Tony Lewis and Nick Edwards, who both are recovering from a concussion, and Matt Hawkins who is suffering from a knee injury.

The replacement players are forwards Jamie Hugh (Life University) and Gonzalo Ruiz (Dallas Harlequins) and the Collegiate All-American back Duncan Kelm (San Diego State).

The player pool will consist of 35 players from around the U.S., and while this initial training camp allows the Eagles’ coaching staff a look at some new faces, this assembly will also focus on preparing many of these players for the Churchill Cup in June.

“The Churchill Cup competition is our most important competition of the season and we want to put our best foot forward in June,” O’Sullivan added. “This two day camp will allow us to look closely at the new players selected in the pool and helps us to begin to put in the foundations for the summer schedule.”

The USA’s first Churchill Cup match this year will be against Russia on June 5 at Infinity Park, in Glendale, Colo. Coincidently, this will be Russia’s first time competing in the Churchill Cup and following their recent loss to Georgia in the European Nations Cup, also qualified as Europe 2 for their first ever Rugby World Cup, setting up a historic encounter with the USA in their Pool C opener.

Leading up to their first competition, the U.S. Men’s National Team will assemble only once again on May 7-9 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif.

The U.S. Eagles player pool set to assemble in Houston includes:

Forwards
Chris Biller (San Francisco Golden Gate)
Peter Dahl (Belmont Shore RFC)
Pat Danahy (Life University)
Brian Doyle (New York Athletic Club Rugby)
Hugh Galligan (Boston Rugby Club)
William Haydock (Boston Rugby Club)
Brian Howard (Old Puget Sound Beach RFC)
Jamie Hugh (Life University)
Nic Johnson (Denver Barbarians RFC)
Daniel LaPrevotte (San Francisco Golden Gate)
Brian Lemay (Unattached) – Former Air Force Player
Samu Manoa (San Francisco Golden Gate)
Vai Notoa (Hawaii Rugby Club)
Shawn Pittman (Bayside RFC)
Anthony Purpura (Boston Rugby Club)
Gonzalo Ruiz (Dallas Harlequins)
Jacob Sprague (New York Athletic Club Rugby)
Louis Stanfill (Olympic Club Rugby)
Phil Thiel (Life University)

Backs
Cory Blair (Huntington Beach)
Mark Bokhoven (Denver Barbarians RFC)
Taivalu Enosa (Belmont Shore RFC)
Duncan Kelm (San Diego State)
Hunter Leland (Texas A&M)
Nese Malifa (Belmont Shore RFC)
Benny Mateialona (Life University)
Vito Qaqa (Brigham Young University)
Zach Pangelinan (Old Mission Beach Athletic Club)
Leonard Peters (Gentlemen of Aspen)
Mike Petri (New York Athletic Club Rugby)
Milemoti Pulu (San Francisco Golden Gate)
Tommy Saunders (Kansas City Blues RFC)
Andrew Suniula (Chicago Griffins RFC)
Kevin Swiryn (Old Puget Sound Beach RFC)
Michael Tuia (Hawaii Rugby Club)

For more information on the Men’s National Team, please visit www.usarugby.org/goto/mens_eagles. For more information on the Churchill Cup event, please visit www.churchillcuprugby.net.

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