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LAFAYETTE, CO. - The U.S. Men's National Team (15s) has selected a full squad of 35-players for the annual Americas Rugby Championship 2019 (ARC) kicking off on Saturday, Feb 2.

Entering the tournament as reigning two-time champions, the Eagles will open the round-robin competition on the road against Chile and Argentina XV before coming home to play Brazil, Uruguay and rival-Canada. Of the five matches played in the tournament, all but one (Argentina XV) will be at the test level.

The USA recently concluded their most successful season in the modern era of the Men's National Team, winning all five matches in the Americas Rugby Championship 2018 and claiming first-ever wins over then-No. 6 Scotland and Samoa. As the team assembles for their first competition in a World Cup year -- aiming to build on the established momentum from last season -- the named team will include several key players who return to the national team after some time.

Two of which are the highly anticipated returns of flyhalf AJ MacGinty and wing Mike Te'o. MacGinty sat out of the Autumn Internationals to recover from injury after being instrumental in the team's aforementioned upset of Scotland. Te'o sustained an injury that kept him out of both the Summer and Autumn test matches last year and is expected to make an appearance at some point during the tournament.

Like Te'o, Peter Malcolm is nearing complete recovery from injury and looks to return to the team during the home legs of the competition. With him is No. 8 Malon Al-Jiboori who returns to fifteens after earning his first cap in the Americas Rugby Championship last season and then continuing to make appearances in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series.

Alongside the athletes who make long-awaited returns are a handful of newly capped players who add fresh depth to the veteran group. Among them are wing Gannon Moore and scrumhalf Nick Boyer, as well as props Chance Wenglewski and David Ainuu who all made their Eagle debut in November of 2018.

With the tournament serving as a catalyst for the upcoming Rugby World Cup, three new players will have the opportunity to earn their first caps in Life University's Duncan Van Schalkwyk, San Diego Legion's Kipeli Pifeleti and New England Free Jacks' Tadhg Leader.

"This selection was one of the more challenging ones for us as a staff. In a World Cup year, it is important that we get the players we believe have the most probable opportunity to be selected for Japan, playing together to develop the cohesion that Coach Gold needs for the team to perform," said Dave Hodges, General Manager of Men's 15s Programs. "The competition marks the start of a critical period where we thoroughly test our players and processes for the World Cup while also focusing on delivering a successful ARC campaign."

The U.S. Men's National Team will open the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 against Chile in Santiago on Feb 2. They'll next face Argentina XV in Rio Negro on Feb 9 before all teams rest for a bye week.

USA will play their final three matches of the competition in America with a Feb 23 matchup against Brazil in Texas; as well as two final games in Seattle against Uruguay on Mar 2 and rival-Canada on Mar 8. The first two are considered home games for the Eagles with the final counted as a home game for Canada.

USA Men's Eagles Squad by the Numbers
35 athletes
19 forwards
16 backs
19 former All-Americans across the high school, junior and collegiate levels
14 played for a D1A rugby program in college
20 former American football players from an official program
10 former basketball players from an official program
11 average age athletes started playing rugby
20 age of the youngest player
34 age of the oldest player
14 average player cap number
3 uncapped players
5 matches (4 at the test level)
3 countries visited

USA Men's Eagles Squad
David Ainuu / Prop / Toulouse (FRA) / 2
Malon Al-Jiboori / Flanker / No. 8 / Glendale Raptors / 1
Nick Boyer / Scrumhalf / San Diego Legion / 1
Marcel Brache / Wing / Western Force (AUS) / 12
Bryce Campbell / Center / London Irish (ENG) / 21
Nick Civetta / Lock / Doncaster Knights (ENG) / 18
Shaun Davies / Scrumhalf / Glendale Raptors / 19
Ruben de Haas / Scrumhalf / Free State Cheetahs (RSA) / 7
Cam Dolan / No. 8 / NOLA Gold / 40
Dylan Fawsitt / Hooker / Rugby United New York / 7
Hanco Germishuys / Flanker / Glendale Raptors / 11
James Hilterbrand / Hooker / Manly Marlins (AUS) / 16
Luke Hume / Fullback / Rugby United New York / 20
Will Hooley / Flyhalf / Bedford Blues (ENG) / 6
Titi Lamositele / Prop / Saracens (ENG) / 26
Ben Landry / Lock / Ealing Trailfinders (ENG) / 15
Paul Lasike / Center / Harlequins (ENG) / 9
Tadhg Leader / Flyhalf / New England Free Jacks / 0
AJ MacGinty / Flyhalf / Sale Sharks (ENG) / 20
Will Magie / Flyhalf / Glendale Raptors / 19
Peter Malcolm / Hooker / Austin Elite / 11
Samu Manoa / Lock / Unattached / 22
Ryan Matyas / Wing / San Diego Legion / 12
Tim Maupin / Fullback / NOLA Gold / 9
Gannon Moore / Wing / Utah Warriors / 2
Paul Mullen / Prop / Houston Sabercats / 6
Greg Peterson / Lock / Bordeaux Bégles (FRA) / 20
Kapeli Pifeleti / Hooker / San Diego Legion / 0
John Quill / Flanker / Rugby United New York / 29
Tevita Tameilau / Flanker / Glasgow Warriors (SCO) / 12
Joe Taufete'e / Hooker / Worcester Warriors (ENG) / 19
Mike Te'o / Wing / San Diego Legion / 21
Duncan Van Schalkwyk / Scrumhalf / Life University / 0
Dino Waldren / Prop / London Scottish (ENG) / 15
Chance Wenglewski / Prop / Lindenwood University / 1

*Unavailable due to injury: Blaine Scully, Nate Augspurger, Psalm Wooching, Eric Fry, Tony Lamborn, Dylan Audsley

USA Men's Eagles Staff
Head Coach | Gary Gold
Assistant Coach, Backs & Attack | Greg McWilliams
Assistant Coach, Forwards | Shawn Pittman
Strength & Conditioning Coach | Huw Bevan
Performance Analyst | Jimmy Harrison
Team Doctor | Mark Sakr (Chile, Argentina Uruguay, Canada)
Team Doctor | Sam Akhavan (Brazil)
Head Athletic Trainer | Kevin Ng
Assistant Athletic Trainer | Kristen Douhan
Massage Therapist | Daliah Hurwitz
Team Manager | Chris Hanson

Americas Rugby Championship 2019 Schedule
Saturday, Feb. 2
vs Chile | Time TBA
Santiago, CHL

Saturday, Feb 9
vs Argentina XV | 3 PM ET
Rio Negro, ARG

Saturday, Feb 23
vs Brazil | 7:10 PM CT
Dell Diamond, Austin, TX
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Saturday, Mar 2
vs Uruguay | 7:10 PM PT
Starfire Sports, Seattle, WA
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Friday, Mar 8
vs Canada | 7:10 PM PT
Starfire Sports, Seattle, WA
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