HSAAs ready for Argentina Tour

Administrator   July 8, 2013   Comments Off on HSAAs ready for Argentina Tour
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The USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans will embark on a demanding four-game tour of Argentina from July 13 to July 28 thanks to the sponsorship of Aircraft Charter Solutions.

Following on from the 2012 tour where the HSAAs went 3-2 against Chile, Uruguay and Argentina, the HSAAs have taken on a more challenging schedule with two opening games against Cordoba, the best regional academy in Argentina, July 18 and 21. Those games will be followed by a double-header test series against Argentina u18s July 24 and 27 in Rio Cuarto.

The HSAA roster includes the best young players in the country: 13 seniors, 12 juniors and four sophomores. Eighteen members of the squad are HSAA returners and five played against Argentina last July in the 52-3 loss.

“The theme for the tour is to narrow the gap between the Pumas and us,” Head Coach Salty Thompson said. “Our boys are outstanding domestic high school players but they’re unaccustomed to the pace and pressure against a tier one nation. Exposure to this level of rugby will challenge our squad to step up and test themselves early in their careers.”

Potentially this is the best HSAA team in recent years. There is a mix of experience and new talent. Titi Lamositele, a senior prop, has played in South Africa, England, Chile, Uruguay and Argentina leading up to his final HSAA tour. He has already been in camp with the Eagles this year.

Zachary Webber and Calvin Whiting have become an experienced pairing for the HSAAs in 15s and sevens. Webber will attend Brigham Young University after his mission while Whiting is still a junior. Michael Reid and Ben Cima partnered at 9 and 10 as u17s last year then played on the South American tour as sophomores. Reid left school in Virginia to attend New Plymouth High School and train at Taranaki Academy in New Zealand while Cima has started with Gonzaga since his freshman year.

Among the new players, Justin Allen, Siaosi Mahoni and Andrew Naylor bring a new dimension at lock, where it is more common to find six-foot-three high school second rows.

“Most have never jumped because teammates can’t lift them,” Thompson said. “So learning to jump in addition to lifting and using their size in contact will be a challenge.”

The preparation for this tour has required players to follow strict training programs and report test scores on a regular basis. Commitment has stepped up and some players were replaced because they could not meet the demands.

“Representing the USA is a massive honor, demanding character, responsibility and commitment,” Thompson said. “We will not start to narrow the gap without a devoted effort from players and staff.”

The HSAA staff for the South American Tour includes assistant coaches Michael Engelbrecht and Paule Barford, trainer Anne Micinski and manager Dale Roach.

USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans | South America Tour 2013

Christian Adams 12 May 1 1994 Senior 5’10” 190 Pride Rugby Washington, D.C.
Justin Allen 5 July 18 1995 Junior 6’10” 266 Portadown Letterkenny, Ireland
Jesus Arias 1 August 10 1996 Junior 6’2″ 215 United Orem, Utah
Niall Barry 7 November 8 1994 Senior 5’10” 170 Reeds Weybridge Cobham, Surrey
Steven Branham 2 June 27 1997 Sophomore 5’10” 215 Fallbrook Rugby Club Fallbrook, California
Benjamin Cima 10 March 20 1996 Junior 6’0″ 180 Gonzaga College Bethesda, Maryland
Anthony Fotu 8 April 25 1995 Senior 6’4″ 255 Hayward Griffins San Leandro, California
Hanco Germishuys 7 August 24 1996 Junior 6’1″ 205 Warriors Omaha, Nebraska
Seth Halliman 13 May 24 1995 Junior 6’2″ 190 Colorado Springs Colorado Springs, Colorado
Viliami Helu 8 March 20 1996 Junior 6’3″ 225 Danville Oaks San Ramon, California
Reed Heynen 6 September 7 1995 Junior 6’2″ 197 Belmont Shore Long Beach, California
Michael Kellett 5 June 8 1994 Senior 6’3″ 220 St. Louis Bombers St. Charles, Missouri
David Kucharski 14 June 5 1995 Senior 6’4″ 210 Muskego Rugby Club Muskego, Wisconsin
Titi Lamositele 1 February 11 1995 Senior 6’0″ 250 Chuckanut Bay Bellingham, Washington
Valdemar Lee-Lo 3 July 4 1995 Senior 6’0″ 250 Dixon Dixon, California
Siaosi Mahoni 4 January 29 1997 Sophomore 6’7″ 225 Razorbacks East Palo Alto, California
John Marti 3 September 2 1995 Senior 6’1″ 255 Belmont Shore Long Beach, California
Aaron Matthews 11 March 12 1997 Sophomore 5’9″ 178 Back Bay Sharks Irvine, California
Malcolm May 6 March 24 1996 Senior 6’1″ 205 Ignatius Chicago, Illinois
Andrew Naylor 4 September 13 1996 Sophomore 6’6″ 257 Prince William Haymarket, Virginia
Suwaiter Poch, Jr. 2 July 21 1996 Junior 6’0″ 230 Hilo Reign Hilo, Hawaii
Michael Reid 9 September 12 1995 Junior 5’10” 176 Taranaki Academy New Plymouth, New Zealand
Jimmy Ronan 9 February 27 1996 Junior 5’7″ 155 Gonzaga College Kensington, Maryland
Gabriel Ruffin 6 February 8 1995 Senior 6’4″ 187 Herriman Riverton, Utah
Joeli Tikoisuva 11 March 1 1996 Junior 5’11” 180 Islanders Sacramento, California
David Todd 12 February 6 1995 Senior 5’9″ 190 Union Rugby Club Tulsa, Oklahoma
Zachary Webber 15 October 19 1994 Senior 6’0″ 185 United Orem, Utah
Calvin Whiting 13 November 30 1995 Junior 6’1″ 198 United Rugby Club Highland, Utah
James Wolfer 10 May 5 1995 Senior 5’9″ 178 Xavier High School Rockaway Park, New York
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