Coaches Named for BC Rugby’s Representative Fifteens Teams

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Vancouver, BC – January 21, 2016:  BC Rugby is pleased to announce the selection of eleven Head Coaches for the BC Rugby Representative Fifteens (XV) Teams.

These Coaches will be leading Teams into a number of national level competitions this summer, including the National Women’s League (Senior Women), Canadian Rugby Championship (U19 Men and U20 Women), the National Rugby Festival (U18 Boys and Girls, and U16 Boys and Girls), and tours to Ontario (U17 Boys, U15 Boys and Girls).

“I would like to thank everyone that applied to coach BC Rugby Union Representative Teams,” said Dean Murten, BC Rugby Performance Development Manager.  “I am extremely happy with the talent and experience we have in place for the 2016 season. This group of coaches will greatly foster the development of the athletes, Teams and the BC Rugby Union in general. I am very excited for the season ahead, and there’s no doubt that the combination of the hard working athletes we have and the assigned coaching staff will warrant a fruitful year.”

Taking the helm of the BC Senior Women’s XV Team will be Aaron Frisby from Westshore RFC. Frisby, currently leading the BC Rugby U23 Menand Women’s Sevens Teams, will be inheriting a Senior Women’s XV Team that went undefeated in their 2015 fixtures. This summer they will be competing at the National Women’s League, a week-long tournament taking place in Toronto from August 16th to 21st.

The UBC Thunderbirds will have two coaches representing BC this summer, as Dr. Maria Gallo and Curry Hitchborn will be coaching the BC Rugby U16 Girls and U19 Men, respectively. Dr. Gallo, who currently heads the UBC Women’s Rugby Program, is a former National player for Canada with a wealth of knowledge about rugby and athletic performance. Hitchborn, who is the UBC Men’s Rugby forwards coach in addition to his age-grade coaching duties at Capilano RFC, will be tasked with preparing the BC Rugby U19 Men as they get set to defend their 2015 Canadian Rugby Championship Title.

Oak Bay based club, Castaway Wanderers, will also have a pair of coaches representing BC. Spencer Robinson, who is also currently the coach with Rugby Canada’s Maple Leafs 7s Team, will take the helm for the BC Rugby U17 Boys. Robinson will be joined by fellow Castaway Wanderer Coach, Shane Muldrew, who will lead the BC Rugby U15 Boys. Both Teams will face Ontario in a three match series in August.

The BC Rugby U20 Women will be led by Dave Grisdale of Cowichan RFC and the Tsunami Rugby Academy). The Team will be participating in the relatively new U20 Women’s Canadian Rugby Championship, to be held July 13th to 19th in Toronto. The Team showed a lot of promise at last year’s competition, and several younger players are eligible to return this year.

The BC Rugby U18 Girls will be led by a familiar face as Marius Felix from (Brentwood College School) reprises his role with the Team. The 2015 side claimed the Western Championship by a single point in a thrilling two-game series against the Prairies, before testing themselves against the top U18 players from the United States in a pair of friendlies. This year, the Team will be competing in the National Rugby Festival in Toronto, from August 16th to 21st. The Nationals were on hiatus last year, but the BC Rugby U18 Girls are the defending champions from 2014.

Dean Murten, will take charge of the BC Rugby U18 Boys, while Burnaby Lake’s Conan Cooper has been given the nod as the BC Rugby U16 Boys’ Coach. Both Teams finished on top at the 2014 National Rugby Festival and will be looking to defend their titles in Toronto this August.

Jen Ross of Abbotsford RFC, a past recipient of the national Female Coach of the Year Award and former National Senior Women’s Team player, will reprise her role with the BC Rugby U15 Girls. She will be a tremendous asset for girls participating on a BC Rugby Representative Team for the first time when the Team goes on tour to Ontario in August.

Don Brown of Brit Lions RC in Delta will oversee the BC Rugby U14 Boys, who are expected to field a pair of development teams this summer. Opponents are to be announced.

The Coaches will evaluate players through the Spring 2016 Club and High School seasons, followed by the Provincial Regional Championships and Identification Sessions, prior to naming rosters. For full details on the selection process and selection criteria for all Age-Grade XVs Teams please visit the BC Rugby website here.

Senior Women: Aaron Frisby, Westshore RFC
U20 Women: Dave Grisdale, Cowichan RFC and Tsunami Rugby
U19 Men: Curry Hitchborn, UBC and Capilano RFC
U18 Boys: Dean Murten, BC Rugby
U18 Girls: Marius Felix, Brentwood College School
U17 Boys: Spencer Robinson, Castaway Wanderers
U16 Boys: Conan Cooper, Burnaby Lake RC
U16 Girls: Maria Gallo, UBC
U15 Boys: Shane Muldrew, Castaway Wanderers
U15 Girls: Jen Ross, Abbotsford RFC
U14 Boys: Don Brown, Brit Lions RC

Competition Schedule:
National Women’s League (Senior Women) – Toronto, August 16-21
Canadian Rugby Championship (U20 Women, U19 Men) – Toronto, July 13-19
National Rugby Festival (U18 Boys &, U18 Girls, U16 Boys, U16 & Girls) – Toronto, August 16-21

To be confirmed:
BC at Ontario (U17 Boys, U15 Boys & U15 Girls) – Toronto, August 16-21

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