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Kids Flood to Play Rugby Mayors Cup

Friday Jun 12, 2009 in Grassroots Rugby Youth

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By Ed Hagerty

Baker Field, Columbia University, New York, NY - More than 450 players on 36 teams competed in Play Rugby’s 2nd Annual Mayor’s Cup Flag Rugby Festival at Columbia University’s Baker Field in New York City.

The field included 24 middle schools (grades 6-8), ten elementary schools (grades 4-5) and two mini teams (grades 1-3). Eighty volunteers ensured that the event went off like clockwork.

It was an eclectic mix, with teams coming from inner-city Bronx and Brooklyn as well as tony Westchester suburban towns. A wonderful upgrade at this year’s event was the outfitting of players on all 36 teams with international replica jerseys provided by Canterbury of New Zealand. In addition to the jerseys, each player received a Rookie Rugby T-shirt and a National Guard water bottle.

Middle School
IS 392 (Brownsville, Brooklyn), representing Romania, defeated PS 279 (Bronx), representing New Zealand, to take the Cup Championship of the 24 team Middle School Division.

Romania’s (IS 392) Path to the Final


Romania 20, USA 0

Romania 20, Namibia 10

Romania 40, Italy 5


Romania 30, Samoa 15

Romania 45, Ireland 25

Romania 30, NZ 20

New Zealand’s (PS 279) Path to the Final
NZ 25, Uruguay 10
NZ 30, Wales 0
NZ 25, Japan 5

NZ 40, Uruguay 0

NZ 40, Argentina 25

Pelham, representing Australia, defeated PS 241 (Bronx), representing Kenya, to win the Middle School Plate Championship.

PS 218 (Bronx), representing Japan, was the Bowl winner, defeating IS 392’s B side (Brooklyn), representing Canada.

The Mayor’s Cup Middle School MVP was Issa Cila, IS 392 (ROM), while the MVP of the final was Steven Fadul, PS 279 (NZ). The Middle School Spirit of rugby award went to Jacob Molina, PS 178 (ARG). 

Elementary School
The Epiphany School from Manhattan, wearing South Africa’s jerseys, won the Cup Championship of the 10-team Elementary School Division with a 45-15 win in the final over Washington Irving (Tarrytown, NY), representing Ireland. Epiphany was coached by Christian Mayo and Shawn Rafferty of Play Rugby USA, and assisted by Bill Jennings of the Epiphany School.

The Pelham Juniors A team, representing Australia, defeated Boys and Girls Republic (Manhattan), representing Scotland, 25-20 in the Plate final.

PS 156 (Brooklyn), representing Italy, defeated the Elysian Charter School (Hoboken), representing the US, 15-0 in the Bowl final.

Sean Jennings, Epiphany (SA) was the Elementary school MVP, while Christopher Michu, PS 20 (ENG), received the Spirit of rugby award.

Epiphany (South Africa), Elementary School Champ: (FRONT, L-R)  Eoin Sansevero, Rory Kinsella, Finn Kinsella, Peter Kilkenny, Jack Gillespie and Lola Antognini. (BACK) John Ambert, Brian Patterson, John Tietjen, Connor Greene, Sean Jennings and John Patterson.

I.S.392 (Romania), Middle School Champ: (FRONT, L-R) Mahlaney Wilson, Issa Sylla, Christopher Knights, Khalil Sulker, Nashon Williams. (BACK) Kiwan Myers, Jabarie Myers, Kentral Butler, Amanda Rose, Aaron Francis, Ovidiu Grozav (coach).

A statement released by Play Rugby said in part: “
This year's tournament was an amazing experience to be a part of. The feedback we have received so far has been incredibly positive and in some instances overwhelming with references to the program and game having been ‘life changing’ for both students and certain educators involved with Play Rugby USA. Needless to say, we can't wait to build upon this success and do it all again next year!”

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