The zealous work being put in to develop a fresh wave of players will accelerate on Sunday when the LA Giltinis Academy plays for the first time this season.
Academy head coach Dave Clancy is excited that Sunday’s 1pm (PST) clash against Canadian opponents is just what his squad needs at Cal State University, Long Beach.
“We have some incredible athletic talent and desire but it has been directed at training until now. Starting this run of six games in 11 weeks is just what these young players need,” Clancy said.
Winger Aisea Tongilava is an explosive prospect developing his rugby after playing as a linebacker during four years in American Football at Cal Berkeley.
“Aisea turned up at our first combine last October. His development and that of many others will get so much from the game time coming up.
“The Giltinis have a number of players coming back from injury over the next few weeks so the Academy matches will be a way of getting them match fitness too. Playing beside some experienced heads will benefit the Academy group as well.”
The Junior Academy (Under-18s) will face Kahuku Rugby Club from 11am.
MITCHELL TO TOAST OF TINSELTOWN
England Sevens Captain Tom Mitchell is now a tiktok sensation, with the his unveiling of the Giltinis new home jersey.
Mitchell, who will be returning to full training this month, lead the injured players with a unique cameo of Céline Dion's 'It's All Coming Back to Me Now', which broke records on the Giltinis social platforms.
HARD WORK MEASURED IN STATS
Centre Billy Meakes was a standout on the stats sheet in last weekend’s 19-15 win over the New England Free Jacks at the Coliseum.
Not only did he top the list for most ball-carries (22), he kept working in defence as the joint top tackler (16) with midfield partner Ben LeSage.
Take a look below.
(v New England Free Jacks)
Ball carries: Billy Meakes 22, Angus Cottrell 17, Will Chambers 13
Tackles: Billy Meakes 16, Ben LeSage 16, Corey Thomas 15
Attacking Breakdown Arrivals: Nathan Den Hoedt 35, Angus Cottrell 30, Corey Thomas 22
Season Try-scoring: Hanco Germishuys 3
Lindsey Stevens - Hooker (knee)
Luke Carty – Flyhalf (pectoral muscle)
Matt Giteau – Flyhalf (calf)
Langilangi Haupeakui – Backrower (knee)
DTH van der Merwe – Winger (knee)
Tom Mitchell – Fullback (hamstring)
Brooklyn Hardaker – Winger (knee)
Adam Ashe – No.8 (head gash)
Ben LeSage – Centre (broken hand)
The Giltinis face the Austin Gilgronis at Bold Stadium in Texas on Saturday. The match will be broadcast live at 5pm PST on Bally Sports SoCal and Bally Sports West in Los Angeles. The match can also be viewed live on The Rugby Network internationally.