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(ISN) – With preparations now underway for the BC Bears, BC Rugby Performance Development Manager Dean Murten has announced the staff and schedule for the BC Bears program.

The 2015 Bears calendar will kick off with training on March 15th, leading up to a pre-season game on June 20/21 against a USA Baa – Baas team in Seattle. The program will then travel to Calgary for the Canadian Rugby Championship (CRC), in pursuit of their first MacTier Cup since 2009.

The program sees the return of coaches Tom Luke and Roger Robinson. Strength and conditioning coach Conan Cooper also returns. In addition, Angel Cividanes joins the program as the new forwards coach.

With this being a World Cup year, Murten sees this as a perfect opportunity to start looking at players for the future.

“We are expecting all the National 15’s players to be available, so if you include those players, along with future National players, it could lead to an exciting group of talented athletes,” said Murten. “I would like to see all clubs and athletes get behind the Bears, as this is a vital program within BC.”

The CRC structure changes this year, and will now feature a centralized competition, rather than home-away matches between all the teams like last season.

“We are looking forward to the abbreviated CRC this year and to see whether we can make short work of a few teams,” said Bears captain Callum Morrison.

The Bears and the coaching staff are now looking to improve on last year’s performance with a national title.

The McKechnie Cup competition in May will be used as a selection window for the BC Bears this season. Coaching staff have been scouting and speaking with players throughout the CDI Premier League and Second Division competitions and will be selecting a squad in preparation for the CRC.

Key dates for upcoming camps are provided below.

BC Bears Pre-Season Schedule
March 15 – Victoria
March 29 – Vancouver
April 12 – Victoria
April 26 – Vancouver
Camp June – 13-14 Victoria
Camp/game v USA Baa – Baas June – 20-21, Vancouver/Seattle
Exact locations TBC

BC Bears 2015 Schedule
CRC Calgary – Sunday June 26 BC Bears v Wolfpack
Wednesday July 01st TBD on results from first game.

Director of Rugby: Dean Murten
Forwards Coach: Angel Cividanes
Backs Coach: Tom Luke/Roger Robinson
Strength & Conditioning: Conan Cooper
Physiotherapist: Jessica Smith