Jersey City PAL representing Australia and Washington Irving Elementary School representing Kazakhstan, win first NYC Rugby Cup Middle School and Elementary School Championship Titles.
June 11, 2011 (New York City, NY) - Over 1000 people made the journey out to Randall's Island Saturday for the 2011 NYC Rugby Cup, despite inclement weather. 64 teams competed in nearly 180 matches for the coveted City Cup titles.
The event, now in its fourth year and sponsored again by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. (HSBC), continued to build upon past year's success. A colorful opening ceremony showcased 40 different nationally-themed jerseys, boasted bagpipers (courtesy of the American Scottish Foundation) and featured a national anthem performed by an opera singer. Following the opening ceremony, the players were sent off to their fields for match kickoff at 10am.
The pool games were hotly contested on 14 fields prior to 12:45pm, at which point the administrators carefully seeded the teams for the playoffs. The playoffs consisted of a Cup, Plate, Bowl, Shield, and Crown for middle school players and a Cup, Plate, and Bowl for elementary school players, enabling all teams a chance to win some silverware.
At the middle school level, the Plate, Bowl, Shield, and Crown trophies were lifted by (PS223 representing Kazakhstan), PS218 (representing England), PS269 (representing Slovakia), and Pelham (representing Argentina). At the elementary school level, the Plate and Bowl trophies were won by PS20 (representing Canada) and Pelham (representing Italy).
That left the elementary and middle school Cups to finish off the action for the day. For the first time in the past two years, Epiphany for the elementary division and IS 392 in the middle school division did not make the finals to defend their titles.
There were a couple individual awards given out at the event as well: the MVP awards and the Frank Garcia Spirit of Rugby Award. This special trophy is named in honor of Frank Garcia, a Department of Education staffer who abruptly and tragically passed away this past year. Frank had been a friend, supporter, and ally of Play Rugby USA since it began working with the DOE in 2006, and the staff at Play Rugby USA were honored to be able to commemorate him with an award at the NYC Rugby Cup. The award was given to elementary and middle school players who each exhibited a true love of rugby and the values that stand at the center of the Play Rugby USA program: sportsmanship, teamwork, respect, and communication.
The recipients of the first Frank Garcia Spirit of Rugby Award were Alfrane De Jesus for the elementary division and Matthew Farnell of the middle school division. The MVPs on the day were Malik Jones for the elementary division and Matthew Williams for the middle school division.
The Cups and individual player awards were then presented by Ashley Parker, EVP HSBC; Lori Benson, Director, Office of Fitness and Health Education; James Dawson, MPS Global Securities; Paul Gestro, Director East America and Consul General, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise; Serge St. Leger Jr., Director of School & CBO Partnerships; and Dr. Gregory S. DiFelice.
The tournament represented the best of New York City with the addition of 7 invitational teams from outside the city that work alongside Play Rugby USA. In total, 16 teams participated from Manhattan, 18 from Brooklyn, 9 from the Bronx, and 7 from Queens.
We would also like to remind everyone there are still tickets available to the NYC Rugby Cup Cocktail Benefit on June 17th. This event is Play Rugby USA’s primary fundraiser, and the funds raised help support the cost of the NYC Rugby Cup. Tickets can be purchased at-http://prusanycrugbycupbenefit.charityhappenings.org/