BHSAAs finish Rugby 4 Nations tournament with defeat of Uruguay

RIO CUARTO, Argentina – The USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans completed their tour of Argentina in the 2014 Four Nations tournament on a high note Saturday with a 27-17 defeat of Uruguay, marking the result the players and staff have worked towards on the three-week tour.

The BHSAAs started the game with great passion, as flanker Malcom May (Penn State University) led the physical forward pack. Set piece was an area of emphasis for the BHSAAs leading in to the match as Forwards Coach Paul Barford saw great progress in the developing tight five players all tour. Barford in particular singled out May for his work in the lineout and the front row for setting the tone for the victory.

The front row set the tone in more ways than one for the BHSAAs early, as prop Derise Fuga (Liberty RFC), making his first start of the tour, broke the scoring open with a pick-and-go try in front of the posts in the fifth minute of the game. Fellow front rower and hooker, Steven Branham (Fallbrook HS), added to the scoring later in the half, contributing his own try with flyhalf Ben Cima (Gonzaga College HS) converting both along with a penalty of his own to send the BHSAAs in to the half leading, 17-14.

Defensive pressure was turned up in the second half by the BHSAAs, and it led to great attacking opportunities for the BHSAAs. This was punctuated by a beautiful kick-chase and recover try by captain and center Calvin Whiting (United RFC) in the 64th minute to make it 27-17 and seal the victory for the BHSAAs.

Head Coach Salty Thompson was thrilled with the performance by his team, with the victory culminating a long three-week tour in Argentina that has seen his team grow up in more ways than one.

"The quality of the tournament has been a tremendous learning experience for our boys," said Thompson. "By game three we were able to play for a complete 70 minutes."

The victory sees the BHSAAs finish the Four Nations in third place behind tournament champions Italy and runner up Argentina.

USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans | v Uruguay
1. Connor Cudeback
2. Steven Branham
3. Derise Fuga
4. Leki Fotu
5. Liam Jimmons
6. Wesley Parker
7. Malcolm May
8. Vili Helu
9. Louis Mulholland
10. Ben Cima
11. Mitch Wilson
12. Lorenzo Thomas
13. Calvin Whiting (C)
14. Seth Halliman
15. Alex Walsh

USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans | Reserves
16. Darien Pickett
17. Suwaiter Poch
18. Jack Iscaro
19. Reed Heynen
20. Junior Helu
21. Sione Masoe
22. Aaron Matthews
23. Joeli Tikoisuva

USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans | Coaching Staff
Salty Thompson - Head Coach
Michael Engelbrecht - Assistant Coach
Paul Barford - Assistant Coach
Sean Duffy - Manager
Anne Micinski - Trainer