USA Men’s Under-20s announce full squad for World Rugby Trophy Qualifier Series with Canada

The nation with the highest aggregate score will earn a place at the international U20 competition this July in Brazil

CHULA VISTA, CA. - After a week long training camp, USA Men’s U20s Head Coach Scott Bracken has selected a full squad of 29 players to face rival-Canada in a two match qualification series on June 4 and June 8 at Shawnigan Lake School on Vancouver Island.

The team with the highest aggregate score from the two match qualifier will represent North America at the World Rugby U20 Trophy tournament in Brazil, July 9-21.

After splitting last year’s qualifiers 1-1 and falling 22 points shy on their cumulative score, Coach Bracken and the U20s have had significantly more time to train and prepare for this year’s games. Since last year’s qualification series, the program has met twice as a group in December’s Winter Camp and the recent preparation assembly to make final selections and ready players for a competitive Canadian team.

“After a productive camp we have selected athletes that give us an opportunity to perform well against a staunch and experienced Canada side,” said Coach Bracken. “While most of our team comes from the Collegiate ranks, Major League Rugby, Men's Pacific Rugby Premiership and D1 are also represented. The staff and I look forward to continue improving on the progress made at our recent assembly.”

Utah Valley University’s Bailey Wilson will lead the group as Captain while 2018 Team USA Youth Olympians Inoke “Junior” Waqavesi and Lauina Falatea have both also been selected. The full group will assemble in Canada on June 1.

Both matches will be streamed LIVE on Rugby Canada’s Facebook Page at facebook.com/rugbycanada.

USA MEN'S U20s FULL SQUAD 

NamePositionCollege/Club
Will VakalahiPropDC Old Glory
Jack WilesPropSt. Bonaventure University
Jared MillerPropLife University
Alex LopetiPropLife West Gladiators
Braden LooperProp/HookerUniversity of Arizona
Matt MeehanHookerArmy West Point
Jack ManzoHookerUniversity of California, Berkeley
Sam GollaLockUniversity of California, Berkeley
Asa CarterLockArkansas State
Matt GelhausLockKutztown
Chris NoggleBackrowSanta Barbara Academy
Bailey Wilson (C)BackrowUtah Valley University
Jason SeveranceBackrowUniversity of California, Berkeley
Luke FreemanBackrowUniversity of California, Berkeley
Miles McCormickBackrowOMBAC
Chase JonesBackrowSt. Mary's College of California
Ethan McVeighHalfbackCardiff Metropolitan University
Jake ChristmannHalfbackUtah Warriors
Mike WeirFlyhalfDartmouth College
Sam WalshFlyhalfUniversity of California, Berkeley
Jack WendlingCenterCentral Washington University
Brandon CalkCenterSt. Mary's College of CA
Ian KilcullenCenterPenn State University
Cole SemuCenterBYU
Ryan JamesWing / FullbackSan Diego Legion
Eric NaposkiWing / FullbackUCLA
Lauina FalateaWing / FullbackUSA Sevens Residency Program
Junior WaqavesiWing / FullbackUSA Sevens Residency Program
Jeff Peleseuma-BreizUtilitySan Francisco Golden Gate

USA MEN'S U20 STAFF

Head Coach | Scott Bracken
Assistant Coach, Attack | Brendan O’Meara
Assistant Coach, Defense | Michael Engelbrecht
Assistant Coach, Set Piece | Liam Harnett
Strength & Conditioning Coach | Michael Smith
Athletic Trainer | Santiago Aquirre
Performance Analyst | Jake Sullivan
Operations Manager | Kevin McCorry

WORLD RUGBY U20 TROPHY QUALIFIER SERIES

Streamed LIVE on Rugby Canada’s Facebook Page

Tues, June 4
vs Canada U20s
8 PM ET

Sat, June 8
vs Canada U20s
8 PM ET

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ABOUT THE USA MEN'S U20s

Under-20s or U20s (formerly known as Junior All-Americans) are athletes ages 19-20 years old who participate in a club or collegiate level rugby program. Unlike the High School and Collegiate All-American programs, there is no requirement for U20s to be attached to a scholastic program; athletes can compete with a senior club, professional team or university program. The U20s participate in formal international competitions such as the U20 Women’s Tri-Nations Cup and U20 Men’s World Rugby Trophy. The U20 program is primarily 15s, but expected to expand in to 7s as World Rugby offers additional opportunity for competition.