June 4th and June 5th at Talen Energy Stadium in Philadelphia
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – May 24, 2016 – A veritable plethora of the nation’s top boys and girls high school and club rugby teams will be competing in the High School Rugby Championship (HSRC) during the upcoming 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, set for Saturday, June 4th and Sunday, June 5th at Talen Energy Stadium in suburban Philadelphia.
Tickets for the World’s Largest Collegiate Rugby Festival are now on sale at http://www.usasevenscrc.com/tickets/.
The 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, which already boasts the 24-team field of the nation’s top men’s college Rugby 7s teams competing for the national championship and the Pete Dawkins Trophy, as well as the 16-team women’s field drawing the top women’s teams from across the country and the National Small College Rugby Organization championship, has invited 40 of the top boys and girls high school and club teams from 14 states including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin.
The 16 teams competing in the Boys Open Division are: Union City Mudturtles (NJ); Unionville (PA); National Athletic Village Select (North Carolina); Greenwich (Connecticut); West Chester (PA) Wolfpack; Blackthorn (PA); Bishop Shanahan (PA); Downingtown (PA); Coventry (PA); Burrell (PA); Narberth (PA); past champion Archmere Academy (Delaware); LaSalle Prep (PA); Malvern Prep (PA); Media (PA) and St. Augustine Prep (NJ).
The 12 teams competing in the Boys Elite Division are: Fishers Rugby (Indiana); New Jersey Blaze; Rugby South Carolina; Kiski (PA); National Athletic Village Select (North Carolina); past champion Maryland Exiles; Rhino Academy 1 (California); West Shore (PA); Utah Cannibals; Rock Rugby (Texas); Fairfield (Connecticut) and Rocky Mountain (Colorado).
The Girls Open Division boasts 12 of the nation’s top teams: past champion New Jersey Blaze; Fairfax (Virginia); West Shore (PA); DSHA (Wisconsin); Unionville (PA); Union City Mudturtles (NJ); Kiski (PA); Downingtown (PA); past champion Doylestown (PA); Rock Rugby (Texas); West End Ruckettes (Virginia); and Kingswood High School (Texas).
Pool play in the High School Rugby Championship will be on Friday, June 3rd from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the Boys competing at Neumann University, and the Girls competing at Drexel University. Knock-out rounds are Saturday, June 4th at Talen Energy Stadium and its Academy Fields adjacent to the stadium, with the semi-finals and finals on Sunday, June 5th at Talen Energy Stadium and its Academy Fields as well.
Putting the spotlight squarely on the new Olympic sport of Rugby Sevens (which will make its return to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro this summer), this two-day rugby festival is one of the largest gatherings of collegiate and high school rugby teams in the world. Penn Mutual is in the second year of a title sponsorship for the event, and NBC Sports will once again return as both broadcaster and event partner. Philadelphia, and Talen Energy Stadium, has been home to the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship since 2011.
The interest in Rugby Sevens (also known as Rugby 7s) will continue to grow as the sport returns to the Olympic Games this summer following a 92-year hiatus.
In the men’s college Rugby 7s National Championship competition, the University of California is the 3-time defending champion, and is joined in the field by Arizona, Arkansas State, Army, Boston College, Clemson, Dartmouth, Indiana, Life, Maryland, Michigan, Navy, Notre Dame, South Carolina, Tennessee, UCLA, Utah Virginia Tech, and Wisconsin. Local teams include the nationally-ranked Saint Joseph’s Hawks, Drexel, Temple, Penn State and Kutztown.
The winner of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship takes home the Pete Dawkins Trophy. The championship trophy is named after Pete Dawkins, who as an All-American football standout at West Point won the Heisman Trophy in 1958. Dawkins was a Rhodes Scholar and attended Oxford, where he used his outstanding football skills to make him a star on the Oxford Varsity rugby team, revolutionizing the game in the process.
There is a 16-team field for the 2016 Women’s Collegiate Championship, featuring three-time defending champion Penn State and local favorites Temple, Delaware, Bloomsburg and Kutztown. Joining them in the women’s championship are the teams from Arizona, Boston University, Life, Lindenwood, Michigan and Notre Dame. Newcomers include Ohio State, Princeton, Rutgers and the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) Selects squad, an all-star team chosen from the best of the NSCRO’s sevens teams.
There will also be a Philadelphia City College Championship men’s bracket including Villanova, Penn and LaSalle, and the National Small College Rugby Organization National Championship.
Off the field there are a number of special events as part of the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship. On Friday, June 3rd, there will be a free Rugby-Inspired Tackle Coaching Seminar from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel (201 North 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103). Speakers will include Rex Norris, the head of ATAVUS Football, and Rutgers University Head Football Coach Chris Ash.
On Sunday, June 5th, there will be a free Rugby-Inspired Tackle demonstration on the practice fields surrounding Talen Energy Stadium. The clinic will feature ATAVUS coaches and special guests, including former Eagles standouts and Sports Radio 94 WIP broadcasters Ike Reese and Mike Quick, guiding student-athletes and coaches through rugby-inspired tackling techniques. The session is free for coaches and student-athletes. Also, there will be opportunities for all attending the ATAVUS Rugby-Inspired Tackling demonstrations to watch the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Championship matches in Talen Energy Stadium from a special VIP Hospitality area of the stadium.
Outside Talen Energy Stadium during the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, the World’s Largest Collegiate Rugby Festival will also include special musical events and activities for fans and families, including a full concert featuring the platinum selling band O.A.R. immediately following the first day’s competition on Saturday, June 4th. In addition to the live O.A.R. concert, there will be sports activities throughout the weekend including the Civilian Military Combine; and a music festival to close out Sunday’s competition.
The Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship is part of a nationwide effort to build American rugby talent in preparation for the Olympics. In the past three years, the Collegiate Rugby Championship has produced 15 players who have gone on to play for the U.S. National teams.
Tickets are now on sale for the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, and are available online at http://www.usasevenscrc.com/crc-tickets/. All games will be played at Talen Energy Stadium in Chester.
About United World Sports:
United World Sports (UWS) is the largest commercial rugby entity in the United States, and the owner and operator of a growing portfolio of dynamic sports, media and apparel brands including, the USA Sevens Rugby international tournament, the largest professional rugby event in North America; the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, the premier college 7s rugby championship; and the Penn Mutual Varsity Cup Championship, the 15s national rugby championship. Through its apparel division, UWS owns the exclusive North and South American license for Rhino Rugby, one of the world's leading rugby apparel and equipment brands. UWS also owns and operates RugbyToday.com, the largest and most widely read media destination dedicated to American rugby. For more information about UWS and its properties, visit http://www.unitedworldsports.com.
About The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company:
Since its founding in 1847, Penn Mutual has been driven by its noble purpose to create a world of possibilities. At the heart of this purpose is the belief that purchasing life insurance is the most protective, responsible and rewarding action a person can take, and is central to a sound financial plan. The company is committed to helping individuals, families and small businesses unlock life's possibilities through life insurance and annuity solutions. This is accomplished through a national network of more than 5,000 financial professionals, who help clients make great things possible. Penn Mutual supports its field representatives with brokerage services through Honor, Townsend & Kent, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor and wholly owned subsidiary. Member FINRA/SIPC. Visit Penn Mutual on the Internet at http://www.pennmutual.com.
About NBC Sports Group:
When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January 2011, the sports assets of the two companies combined to form NBC Sports Group, which serves sports fans 24/7 with premier live events, insightful studio shows, and compelling original programming. The sports media company consists of a unique array of broadcast television, cable television, radio and digital sports assets, including NBC Sports, NBC Olympics, NBCSN (NBC Sports Network), Golf Channel, 11 NBC Sports Regional Networks, NBC Sports Radio and NBC Sports Digital.
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