USA Men’s Selects Names Roster For APC Opener Against Tonga A

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Men’s Selects name starting roster to face Tonga A in Americas Pacific Challenge 2018 opener
Former Junior and Collegiate All-American Connor Kearns to serve as Captain


MONTEVIDEO, URUGUAYMen’s Selects’ Head Coach Scott Lawrence has named his matchday 23 to face Tonga A this Saturday at 12:30 PM ET in the opening match of the Americas Pacific Challenge (APC) 2018, LIVE on FloRugby.

The full team will consist of 11 capped Men’s Eagles, 10 returners from the 2017 tournament, three 2018 First Team Men’s Collegiate All-Americans and three recent collegiate or professional rugby champions.

The developmental tournament will feature six teams all gunning heavily to expose new waves of players to international competition ahead of Rugby World Cup Japan 2019. With less than one year until the World Cup and just weeks from final selections for the November Internationals, athletes from all sides will be heavily focused on delivering standout performances.

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“We’ve had a focused few days together and it’s been encouraging to see the men self-organize. We know tomorrow’s match with Tonga A will be well-contested and are looking forward to putting the week’s hard work into action,” said Head Coach Scott Lawrence.

Leading the team as Captain is San Diego Legion‘s Connor Kearns who will make his first-ever appearance with the Men’s Selects. Kearns is no stranger to the USA Rugby pathway having earned All-American honors at both the Junior and Collegiate levels in 2013 and 2016, respectively. His experience competing at the professional level with Major League Rugby coupled with his international appearances from previous All-American tours will undoubtedly be a benefit to the entire playing group.

Kearns is joined by 2018 Collegiate All-Americans Chance Wenglewski, Alex Maughan and Mitch Wilson. Maughan and Wilson both own 2018 D1A National Championships with Life University and played in the 2017 tournament.

Capped Eagle Psalm Wooching will feature on Saturday after last joining the Men’s National Team for the Americas Rugby Championship 2018. Wooching’s APC appearance is a valuable stepping stone for his return to the senior international stage, having spent the last several months recovering from injury.

Men’s Eagle Angus Mclellan also joins the Selects after Olive Kilifi was held out of consideration due to injury. Maclellan appeared at both the 2016 and 2017 iterations of the APC.

The Men’s Selects finished last year’s tournament in second-place while Tonga A came in third. After Saturday, the Selects will face Uruguay XV on Oct. 10 before closing out the Americas Pacific Challenge 2018 with reigning champion Argentina XV on Oct. 14. All three games will kickoff at 12:30 PM ET and be streamed LIVE on FloRugby.

Men’s Selects Starting Roster

Player Name

Position

Current Club

Notes

1. Chance Wenglewski

Prop

Lindenwood University

• 2018 First Team Collegiate All-American

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

2. Alex Maughan

Hooker

Life University

• 2018 First Team Collegiate All-American

• 2018 D1A National Champion

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

3. John Hayden

Prop

Unattached

4. Nate Brakeley

Lock

New York Athletic/ Rugby United New York

• Capped Men’s Eagle

5. Taylor Krumrei

Lock

Seattle Seawolves

• 2018 Major League Rugby Champion

6. Psalm Wooching

Flanker

Unattached

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

7. Hanco Germishuys

Flanker

Austin Elite

• Capped Men’s Eagle

8. Brendan Daly

No. 8

San Francisco Golden Gate

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

9. Nick Boyer

Scrumhalf

San Diego Legion

• Has appeared on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series

10. Connor Kearns (C)

Flyhalf

San Diego Legion

11. Mika Kruse

Wing

Glendale Raptors

12. Anthony Salaber

Center

San Diego Legion

13. Dylan Audsley

Center

San Diego Legion

• Capped Men’s Eagle

14. Tim Maupin

Wing

NOLA Gold

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

15. Mitch Wilson

Fullback

Life University

• 2018 First Team Collegiate All-American

• 2018 D1A National Champion

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

Men’s Selects Reserves

Player

Position

Current Club

Notes

16. Pat O’Toole

Reserve

San Diego Legion

17. Kelepi Fifita

Reserve

Glendale Raptors

• 2017 America’s Pacific Challenge

18. Angus Mclellan

Reserve

Utah Warriors

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

19. Matt Jensen

Reserve

Utah Warriors

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

20. Vili Toluta’u

Reserve

Seattle Seawolves

• 2018 Major League Rugby Champion

21. Devereaux Ferris

Reserve

Life West Gladiators

22. JP Eloff

Reserve

NOLA Gold

• Capped Men’s Eagle

• 2017 Americas Pacific Challenge

23. Ryan Matyas

Reserve

San Diego Legion

• Capped Men’s Eagle

USA Men’s Selects Staff

Head Coach | Scott Lawrence
Assistant Coach | David Williams
Assistant Coach | Scott Murray
Strength & Conditioning Coach | Huw Bevan
Performance Analyst | Jimmy Harrison
Team Doctor | Marc Kowalsky
Head Athletic Trainer | Kevin Ng
Assistant Athletic Trainer | Santiago Aguirre
Team Manager & Operations | Kevin McCorry II

Americas Pacific Challenge 2018 Schedule
Montevideo, Uruguay
vs Tonga A
Sat, Oct. 6 – 12:30 PM ET

vs Uruguay XV
Wed, Oct. 10 – 12:30 PM ET

vs Argentina XV
Sun, Oct. 14 – 12:30 PM ET

*Schedule subject to change; all matches LIVE on FloRugby.

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And as always, stay low and keep pumping those legs.<

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Born in Osu, Accra, Ghana, West Africa, Junoir Blaber is a rare commodity; while most Ghanians eat, sleep and dream Soccer (football), Junoir is all about Rugby. A self-proclaimed Rugbyologist, he has been involved in Rugby as a ref, coach, administrator and player since Columbus discovered Ohio. His useful/trivial rugby knowledge qualify Blaber as RWU's Senior Correspondent & known in rugby circles as The Rugby Rain Man. He can also be found moonlighting for our American partners at MeetTheMatts.com.

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