SANTIAGO, CHL. – The U.S. Men’s National Team 15s has named it’s match-day roster to face Chile in the first round of the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 this Saturday, Feb 2 at 1 PM ET, LIVE on FloRugby. As reigning two-time Champions, the Eagles will begin the chase to secure their third-consecutive title in the opening of a Rugby World Cup year.
Headlining the squad as Captain is wing Marcel Brache who takes on the role with Blaine Scully out due to injury. Brache owns 12 caps with the Eagles and has been a leader amongst the group since his debut in 2016. The athlete scored his first two tries in a breakout game against Russia last summer in Denver, CO.
Suiting up as Brache’s counterpart on the wing is Gannon Moore who recently earned his first cap in the team’s historic first ever victory over Samoa last November.
The backline are also joined by the official return of flyhalf AJ MacGinty who was forced to miss the November Internationals last year due to injury. With MacGinty in, Will Magie will start at fullback.
Records could be broken within the forward pack as hooker Joe Taufete’e is currently two tries away of becoming the highest scoring front row forward in World Rugby history. Taufete’e owns 14 career tries where Ireland’s Keith Wood currently holds the record at 15 tries.
Wood reached the record after a nine year career as a national team player whereas Taufete’e was first capped with the Eagles in 2015. The achievement would be an incredible feat for USA’s hooker having done so in only four years and what will be his 20th cap.
Overall, ten total players in Saturday’s lineup come from professional teams in Major League Rugby with Tadhg Leader — Captain of the New England Free Jacks — having the opportunity to earn his first cap from the bench. The full match-day 23 features a cumulative total of 343 caps.
Head Coach Gary Gold said: “Our first challenge of the ARC will not be easy, playing the Chilean side in their home territory. Chile plays a very passionate and physical game and given this is the start of a long tournament, we must play to our strengths to establish the momentum we need to carry us through the competition. Of course, we want to win our third ARC title, but that will be even more difficult as all teams have come back with a renewed physicality. This is the start of our Rugby World Cup year and we must ensure our guys are prepared to manage the intensity in each game for the full 80 minutes.”
The USA sits on the better side of a 4-1 overall record with the Chileans and won their previous three matchups in the ARC with a bonus point win. Last time the two faced off, the Eagles walked away with a 45-13 victory on home soil. Given Chile has certainly strengthened since last facing the United States, and with the U.S. Men’s National Team looking to maintain their form, Saturday’s matchup will set the tone for the next six weeks.
Following Chile, the United States will face Argentina XV in Rio Negro on Sat, Feb 9 before all teams rest for a bye week. After the break, the Eagles will play three matches in USA against Brazil (Feb 23) in Austin, TX, as well as Uruguay (Mar 2) and rival-Canada (Mar 8) in Seattle, WA.
Tickets to watch the Eagles play at home in the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 are available at usarugby.org/tickets. All USA matches of the tournament will be broadcast LIVE on FloRugby exclusively in the United States.
Men’s Eagles Starting Roster | USA vs Chile
|1. Titi Lamositele||Prop||Saracens (ENG)||26|
|2. Joe Taufete’e||Hooker||Worcester Warriors (ENG)||19|
|3. Dino Waldren||Prop||London Scottish (ENG)||15|
|4. Greg Peterson||Lock||Bordeaux Bégles (FRA)||20|
|5. Nick Civetta||Lock||Doncaster Knights (ENG)||18|
|6. John Quill||Flanker||Rugby United New York||29|
|7. Hanco Germishuys||Flanker||Glendale Raptors||11|
|8. Cam Dolan||No. 8||NOLA Gold||40|
|9. Shaun Davies||Scrumhalf||Glendale Raptors||19|
|10. AJ MacGinty||Flyhalf||Sale Sharks (ENG)||20|
|11. Marcel Brache (C)||Wing||Western Force (AUS)||12|
|12. Paul Lasike||Center||Harlequins (ENG)||9|
|13. Bryce Campbell||Center||London Irish (ENG)||21|
|14. Gannon Moore||Wing||Utah Warriors||2|
|15. Will Magie||Fullback||Glendale Raptors||19|
Men’s Eagles Reserves | USA vs Chile
|16. James Hilterbrand||Reserve||Manly Marlins (AUS)||16|
|17. Chance Wenglewski||Reserve||Lindenwood University||1|
|18. Paul Mullen||Reserve||Houston SaberCats||6|
|19. Nate Brakeley||Reserve||Rugby United New York||15|
|20. Tevita Tameilau||Reserve||Glasgow Warriors (SCO)||12|
|21. Ruben de Haas||Reserve||Free State Cheetahs (RSA)||7|
|22. Tadhg Leader||Reserve||New England Free Jacks||0|
|23. Dylan Audsley||Reserve||San Diego Legion||6|
USA Men’s Eagles Staff
Head Coach | Gary Gold
Assistant Coach, Backs & Attack | Greg McWilliams
Assistant Coach, Forwards | Shawn Pittman
Strength & Conditioning Coach | Huw Bevan
Performance Analyst | Jimmy Harrison
Team Doctor | Mark Sakr (Chile, Argentina Uruguay, Canada)
Head Athletic Trainer | Kevin Ng
Assistant Athletic Trainer | Kristen Douhan
Team Manager | Chris Hanson
Americas Rugby Championship 2019 Schedule
Saturday, Feb. 2
vs Chile | 1 PM ET
Saturday, Feb 9
vs Argentina XV | 3 PM ET
Rio Negro, ARG
Saturday, Feb 23
vs Brazil | 7:10 PM CT
Dell Diamond, Austin, TX
Saturday, Mar 2
vs Uruguay | 7:10 PM PT
Starfire Sports, Seattle, WA
Friday, Mar 8
vs Canada | 7:10 PM PT
Starfire Sports, Seattle, WA
About the Americas Rugby Championship
The Americas Rugby Championship (ARC) is an international, round-robin competition at the test level which features six competing teams from North and South America including Argentina XV, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Uruguay and USA. All matches contested in the ARC count for rankings points and test caps with the exception of those played against Argentina XV who compete as a secondary national team. Originally introduced as a development tournament, the Americas Rugby Championship began operating at the senior international level in 2016 where Argentina XV (who remained as part of the setup) claimed the inaugural championship and USA took runners-up. USA are currently reigning champions having won both the 2017 and 2018 ARC with Argentina XV runners-up in both years.
ARC Points Structure
Win – 4 points
Draw – 2 points
Loss – 0 points
Scoring 4+ tries – 1 point
Losing by 7 or fewer points – 1 point