CROWTHORNE, U.K. – USA Rugby High School All-Americans (HSAA) coach, Salty Thompson has set his lineup for the team’s first clash of the Wellington College tournament against Wales Under-16s. The game kicks off tomorrow (Saturday April 7) at 5pm local time (9am PT, Noon ET).
The starting 15 were treated to a special moment as USA Men’s National Team star Chris Wyles, found time from his professional club commitments at Saracens to present the HSAA starting side with their jerseys and preside over a training session.
An inspirational moment may be just what the HSAAs need to start the tournament, a competition designed to develop potential international caliber athletes.
“Opening with Wales will be a fantastic introduction to international age grade rugby for our young ‘95 and ‘96 born players. It’s the type of developmental experience that our boys need,” said Thompson.
In the spirit of developing athletes, one of the tournament rules is that every player entered into the competition must get at least 35 minutes of playing time.
Among the teams competing in the tournament are England North, England South, Scotland, Wales, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Canada. The USA will play Wales, England North, and Belgium.
The U.K tournament was made possible by a generous sponsorship from Aircraft Charter Solutions, a deal that will help support the USA Rugby Boy’s High School All-Americans through 2016. Competing at a high level is crucial for USA’s up-and-coming stars as the nation prepares for future World Cups and the 2016 Olympic Games.
Fitou Fisiiahi, the excellent inside center who plays his rugby for Titans High School in Honolulu, Hawaii, will captain the side after an impressive week of preparation.
USA Rugby High School All-Americans
Player (Club; Hometown)
15 Samuel Cowley (Charlotte Catholic H.S. Rugby Club; Charlotte, N.C.)
14 Jesse Mander (St. Paul's School - London; London, U.K.)
13 Billy Maggs (San Diego Mustangs; Del Mar, Calif.)
12 *Fitou Fisiiahi (Titans Rugby Club; Honolulu, Hawaii)
11 Stratton Brown (Lowland Rugby; Bluffdale, Utah)
10 Scott Dean (Liberty Rugby Football Club; Renton Wa.)
9 Michael Reid (Warrenton Wolfpack; Purcellville, Va.)
1 Titi Lamositele (Chuckanut Bay; Bellingham, Wa.)
2 Gavin Moscone (Piedmont International Touring Side; Piedmont, Calif.)
3 Kelepi Fifita (Tempe Youth Rugby Club; Phoenix, Ariz.)
4 Stuart Harr (Chapin Eagles Rugby Club; Chapin, S.C.)
5 Bradley Luvender (Katy Barbarians; Katy, Texas)
6 Matteo Salvalaggio (Latymer Upper School; London, U.K.)
7 Malcolm May (Ignatius RFC; Chicago, Ill.)
8 Lisala Kanongataa (Titans Rugby Club; Honolulu, Hawaii)
Henry Baylor (Marin Highlanders; Ross, Calif.)
Brian Carley (Xavier H.S., New York City, N.Y.)
Josh Daif (St. Thomas Aquinas; Kansas City, Mo.)
Drew Gaffney (San Diego Mustangs; San Diego, Calif.)
Hanco Germishuys (Nebraska; Omaha, Neb.)
Alauna Helu (East Palo Alto Under-19s; Union City, Calif.)
Reed Heynen (Wilson H.S./Belmont Shore; Long Beach, Calif.)
Matthew Masoe (Back Bay; Long Beach, Calif.)
Matthew Ruiters (Gonzaga H.S.; Washington D.C.)
Allan Sakalia (East Palo Alto RFC; East Palo Alto, Calif.)
Matt Ternan (Jesuit H.S.; Carmichael, Calif.)
Aisea Tongilava (Wilson H.S./Belmont Shore; Santa Ana, Calif.)
McCarthy Tonuao (Budd Bay RFC U19; Olympia, Wa.)
John Warnock (Peninsula Green; Lost Altos, Calif.)
Bruce Yun (Wlison H.S./Belmont Shore; Long Beach, Calif.)