BOULDER, Colo. – Following December’s Men’s Junior All-American camp, which saw 27 D1A Rugby players compete with the nation’s best U20s, 13 underclassmen representing five schools made the cut to attend a second winter camp Jan. 15-18.
The MJAA camp held before the Christmas holiday witnessed 52 players seeking to impress a coaching staff tasked with putting together a U20 team to face Canada Feb. 13 with a place in the 2016 World Rugby U20 Trophy competition at stake. Over half of last month’s camp participants were not called back to duty, while a dozen players who missed the original camp have been brought into the fold.
“We are looking to build the best comprehensive squad that will push, develop, and tightly knit the final 23 selected for the qualifier,” said Lindenwood Director of Rugby and MJAA interim Head Coach JD Stephenson. “The success of the development and cohesion in camp ultimately comes down to player buy-in and belief of the program. The coaching staff believes that the players selected for this assembly have the right mindset and ability to be successful and will get the best out of each other.”
The Feb. 13 U20 Trophy qualifying match against Canada is being organized in conjunction with the second leg of the Americas Rugby Championship, which will pit the Men’s Eagles against Canada in Austin, Texas.
Eleven additional D1A student-athletes were invited to this weekend’s camp on the campus of Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo., but are either injured or unavailable. To view the entire list of camp attendees, visit USARugby.org.
Jan. 15-18 MJAA Camp Attendees
|Connor Cudeback||Cal Poly|
|Duncan Van Schalkwyk||Life|
|Vili Helu||Saint Mary’s|
|Aaron Matthews||Saint Mary’s|
|Malcolm May||Penn State|
|Cecil Rich||Wheeling Jesuit|
|Jimmy Ronan||Penn State|