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Girls Club Nationals to CWU

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Girls Club Nationals to CWU

The 2016 NIT Club committee has announced that the inaugural Girls High School Club Rugby National Championship (hsgirlsrugbynationals.club) will be held at Central Washington University (CWU) in Ellensburg, Wash. May 21-22.

While girls high school rugby has held a national championship since the year 2000, in 2016 coaches from club and single-school teams mutually agreed to hold separate championships for the two types of teams in order to provide a more equitable competition. (See Girls Championships Split)

“We are very honored to host the Girls High School Club Championships at Central, as we are committed to support the growth of the high school game,” said Mel Denham, Head Coach of CWU Women’s Rugby. “With varsity women’s rugby rapidly emerging in the NCAA, Central Washington will provide a top class venue for the event, as well an opportunity for these young athletes to see and experience first hand what it is like to be on a university campus that fully supports the sport.”  

The Club Championships’ organizing committee is committed to holding the tournament each year at a women’s rugby university to maximize exposure for the young athletes participating and inspire them to continue playing beyond high school. 

“The National Invitational Tournament has inspired my high school players to aspire to attend a university with a rugby program so that they can continue to play the sport they love in college,” said Fallbrook Head Coach Marin Pinnell.  “At Nationals each year, my girls are approached by college scouts that want to give them more information about their university programs.  This first hand experience has enabled many of my girls that never would have thought about a rugby university to consider this option.  I now have my girls playing rugby across the country at universities such as CWU, Lindenwood, and Notre Dame College.  Hopefully the list of schools will grow with this new exposure to a University venue each year”. 

“To ensure women’s rugby continues its rapid growth, athletes need opportunities like this to play the best competition possible,” said Rex Norris, Head Coach of the Kent Crusaders, Host Team for the championship. “The venue, the competition, and the support by the women’s rugby community ensures this event will be top-notch across the board.”

The Championships will be supported by ATAVUS under a 3-year commitment. Coaches interested in more information on participating in the club championship can email Marin Pinnell at marinpinnell@gmail.com. Companies or organizations interested in helping to sponsor the tournament should contact: Julie Prentice at julie.prentice@atavus.com

Registration for the tournament will be available by January 25th at http://hsgirlsrugbynationals.club