Vancouver, BC: One of North America's largest regional youth rugby tournaments will take place this weekend at the University of British Columbia when the BC Rugby Provincial Regional Championships kick off on Friday, July 8th. In a jam-packed three day schedule, the tournament will feature 51 games with over 400 age grade players divided into 19 regional teams.
A number of established and emerging players have participated in the PRCs before progressing onto the Senior Men's National 15s and 7s teams including BC products Nathan Hirayama, Matt Evans, Harry Jones and Thyssen De Goede.
Several players on Canada's 2011 Under-20 roster also participated in the PRCs including Vancouver Island players Tye Hamblin and Scott MacLeod, as well as Fraser Valley standout Clayton Meeres.
"This tournament is one of the main steps in the player pathway," said BC Rugby Provincial Coach and Development Manager Dave Brown. "This tournament provides a tremendous opportunity for regional athletes and teams to participate in more elite competition and then move forward to national level events."
While many established players will take to the pitch this weekend, this will also serve as an opportunity for provincial coaches to see emerging players from regions not considered to be 'hotbeds' of rugby, like the Okanagan and Interior.
"Players such as Kelowna's Cam Pierce and Williams Lake's Kayla Moleschi made a name for themselves playing in the PRCs and have since moved on to national team selections," Brown added.
Pierce, a 6-foot-6 forward, recently represented Canada's U20 team in the Junior World Rugby Trophy in Tbilisi, Georgia. Moleschi played a key role in British Columbia's Tier Two national title run this summer, leading the division in try scoring with six to her credit in just three games.
The BC provincial coaches for the U16 Men, U18 Men and U18 Women will be on hand for the tournament, and will use the competition as a final selection tool for the National Festival Championships to be held in Calgary this August.
For more information on the 2011 PRCs click here
. PRCs Day 1 Schedule
11:00am (U18 Women) Vancouver vs Cariboo
12:15pm (U16 Men) West Vancouver vs Thompson Okanagan
12:15pm (U16 Men) Vancouver North vs Fraser Valley Central
12:15pm (U16 Men) Fraser Valley West vs Vancouver East
1:10pm (U18 Men) Vancouver vs Thompson Okanagan Kamloops
1:10pm (U18 Men) Fraser Valley vs Vancouver Island North
1:10pm (U18 Men) Thompson Okanagan Kelowna vs Vancouer Island South
2:00pm (U18 Women) Vancouver Island vs Fraser Valley
3:15pm (U16 Men) Vancouver Island North vs Fraser Valley Central
3:15pm (U16 Men) Vancouver Island South vs Thompson Okanagan
3:15pm (U16 Men) Fraser Valley East vs Vancouver East
4:05pm (U18 Men) Vancouver vs Thompson Okanagan Kelowna
4:05pm (U18 Men) Fraser Valley vs Vancouver Island South
4:05pm (U18 Men) Vancouver Island North vs Thompson Okanagan Kamloops
5:00pm (U16 Men) Vancouver North vs Vancouver Island North
5:00pm (U16 Men) Vancouver Island South vs Vancouver West
5:00pm (U16 Men) Fraser Valley West vs Fraser Valley EastU18 Women
(4-team format, 6 games, games per team 3x70 mins)
2. Fraser Valley
3. Vancouver Island
4. Cariboo CoastU18 Men
(6-team format, 18 games, games per team 6x40 mins)
2. Fraser Valley
3.Thompson Okanagan Kelowna
4. Vancouver Island South
5. Vancouver Island North
6. Thompson Okanagan Kamloops U16 Men
(9-team format, 27 games, games per team 6x40 mins)
1. Vancouver North
2. Vancouver Island South
3. Fraser Valley West
4. Fraser Valley East
5. Vancouver West
6. Vancouver Island North
7. Vancouver East
8. Thompson Okanagan
9. Fraser Valley Central