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The White Plains Rugby Club is hosting its 21st annual Jo Jo Moore Rugby Tournament this weekend at the New York Military Academy, in Cornwall on the Hudson, New York.

The Tournament is held each year to benefit one of its founding members, Matthew 'Jo Jo' Moore, who has been a quadriplegic since suffering a severe spinal injury nineteen years ago while playing rugby. According to Ed Burrell, the Publicity Director, “The all-day event honors JoJo, his wife Peggy, and their family, and celebrates rugby, friendship and cheer among all who come to play and watch.Burrell further added that “Jo Jo Moore is an inspiration to all of us; his kindness, grace, spirit, and courage are truly remarkable.”

The tournament has several groups including Men’s and Women’s social 7’s as well as a Men’s 15’s.  The focus of the weekend, however, is the Men’s 7’s National Qualifier.

The qualifier has a field of ten teams that are divided into two divisions.  Each bracket will compete in round robin pool play with the top two teams in each bracket earning a birth in the semifinals.

The brackets are as follows:

Group A                         Group B

Old Blue-1                      NYAC

Morris                            Old Blue-2

Boston                          Middlesex

NYAC-2                         Mystic

Long Island                    White Plains

Games begin at 8:30 AM and will conclude by 4:30 PM on Saturday.  Check back on Saturday night for the results of the tournament.

This is a big step for the NYAC club, which is taking 7s a bit more seriously now that Billy Millard is coaching with the team. Old Blue, however, has been the strongest club, year-in, year-out, from the region. Boston is expected to be strong, also. But watch out for Mystic River. Dimitri Efthimiou, who helped lead Northeastern to a Bowl win at the CRC, and was a USA prospect back when he was 19, is back, bigger, stronger, smarter, and better positioned to lead a team.