Fall 15s Captains' Bios

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Doug Wilson

Year: 2019

Position: Number 8

Hometown: Hummelstown, PA

Doug is coming into his 10th season of rugby, serving this 2018-19 academic year as the President of the MCRC. A senior International Politics & Economics major focusing in Chinese, Doug began his rugby career in 6th grade playing for West Shore United’s under 15’s squad. After playing with West Shore United for a total of seven years, as well as playing for both the Pennsylvania All State 7’s and 15’s squads throughout his four years of high school, Doug had the honor to serve as captain of West Shore United and lead the team to a fourth place national ranking his senior year.

Before coming to Middlebury as a freshman in fall of 2015, Doug had already come to campus for two overnight visits to meet the MCRC lads and definitely not pass out on the floor of Brendan Kelly’s suite. By the second match of his first season with the MCRC, Doug had entered the starting lineup at outside center in a challenging Division 1 conference, filling the vacancy left when then captain Jake Feury’s was injured. In his fourth start of the season against then nationally ranked American International College, Doug broke his hand at the 10th minute of the game and proceeded to finish the remaining 70 minutes with the middle knuckle of his left-hand broken in half. The fracture required surgery and would cost Doug the remainder of his inaugural fall season.

After making a full recovery, Doug came out for 7’s in the spring determined to make an impact and earn a starting spot on a competitive Middlebury squad. A few weeks before the first tournament of the season Doug sustained two herniated discs in his lower spine while squatting in the weight room, and was forced to sit out for his freshman spring and entire sophomore year to recover. Doug continued to stay closely involved with the team, serving as Match Secretary both sophomore and junior year, and also joining Raouf Belkhir to direct the MCRC’s growing relationship with the Charter House, an organization which provides food and emergency housing in the Middlebury community.

Returning from his back injury in the fall of his junior year, Doug started at flanker and went on to play all 80 minutes for every game of the season.

Having just finished a 7 month stay in China which stretched from January through July of 2018, Doug is returning to Middlebury as the president of the MCRC – ready to lead the team both on and off the pitch. Aiming to play 8-man for his last fall rugby season, Doug is eager for the opportunity to stand shoulder to shoulder alongside his brothers on the pitch while also assuming the responsibility of maintaining the positive image and expanding the strong culture of the MCRC across the Middlebury campus and community. After graduation, Doug is contemplating returning to China to pursue a master’s degree in Energy, Resources and the Environment, but if you ask him what the future holds his response is as simple as: “I don’t want to join the army, I don’t want to go to war…”

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Ben Manoukian

Year: 2018.5

Position: Prop

Hometown: Reno, NV

"My name is Ben Manoukian and I am an International Politics and Economics major, graduating in February of 2019. I had not played rugby before coming to Middlebury, but I was placed in a suite with the Captain, Treasurer, and Match Secretary my freshman year so I never really had the choice.

I fell in love with the game and the club immediately, and was honored to be named Captain in the Fall of 2017 after two A-side 15s seasons. Continuing as Captain from the past full school year, I look to bring experience and intensity in my last season with the Blue. I look forward most to mentoring the young players and teaching them the values of rugby as the veteran players taught me when I was a freshman. We’re off to a strong start with a great preseason camp and we look forward to performing on the pitch this Fall!"

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Scott Westvold

Year: 2019

Position: Scrum-half

Hometown: Weston, MA

"My name is Scott Westvold and I am a Computer Science Major graduating in June of 2019. I had not played rugby before coming to Middlebury but on my first day of classes a friend convinced me to go to lunch with the “rugby guys”. I never intended on playing but I went to the first practice, enjoyed my time on the pitch like so many ruggers before me and just kept coming back. I never thought that I’d play rugby my entire time at Middlebury but something about the MCRC kept me returning every day and now it is the single most important aspect of my Middlebury experience.

I have played as the A-Side Scrum-Half since midway through my sophomore year but this season is my first season as a Captain of the MCRC. I look to bring intensity and experience in on-field organization as a scrum-half to my last season with the Blue. My initial goals for this season are to qualify for the playoffs, a difficult but attainable task with a strong core of seniors, and off the field recruit a large and dedicated freshman class to ensure the future prosperity of the club. After a challenging camp the MCRC is ready for the season!”

Spring 7s Captains' Bios

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Name: Amani Core
Year: 2018
Position: Flanker (Captain)
Hometown: Cambridge, MA

“My name is Amani Core and I am a Senior Chinese and Philosophy Joint Major here at Middlebury. Athletics have always played an important part in my academic life, as I participated in football, lacrosse, and wrestling in high school. I started playing rugby midway through my Middlebury career, joining the MCRC during my sophomore spring. It has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in college. As a Flanker, I take pride in being part of the forward pack and enjoy being extremely active all over the pitch. As much as I put in the effort to support my teammates in rucks and line breaks, I’m always happy to support them in their daily lives as well. 

Being Co-Captain during my last semester is a great honor, and I want to prepare the Club not only for this upcoming spring season but also for next fall. I want us to be physically fit and mentally ready for our spring tournaments, which will help cultivate positive work habits that extend to the fall. Lastly, I want to do everything possible to help the younger members enjoy this Club and our community as much as I have during my time with the MCRC, which would be the perfect way to finish off my college career.” 

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Name: Christian Reina
Year: 2019
Position: Center (Captain)
Hometown: Queens, NY

"My name is Christian Reina and I am from Queens, NY. I am an economics major graduating in 2019. My rugby career began as early as the age of 8 with Play Rugby USA and I continued playing rugby while attending Xavier High School. During this time, I gained exposure to both 7s and 15s under the guidance of a myriad of formidable coaching staffs. 

I began playing for the MCRC in the fall of 2015, continuing my rugby career in both 15s and 7s. 

As of Spring 2018, it was with great pleasure that I accepted the role as Co-Captain for club. Utilizing lessons learned over the years from my rugby experience, I seek to better not only myself but also every member of the club, on and off of the pitch. I understand that preparing and leading a roster of dozens of athletes into a rugby season is a great task, but with the commitment, work ethic, and sheer talent that the MCRC possesses, coupled with a seasoned coaching staff, we are well on our way to a successful season." 

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Name: Ben Manoukian
Year: 2018.5
Position: Prop (Captain)
Hometown: Reno, Nevada

“My name is Ben Manoukian and I am an International Politics and Economics major, graduating in February of 2019. I had not played rugby before coming to Middlebury, but I was placed in a suite with the Captain, Treasurer, and Match Secretary my freshman year so I never really had the choice. 

I fell in love with the game and the club immediately, and was honored to be named Captain in the Fall of 2017 after two A-side 15s seasons. We have a lot of potential this Spring season and a roster full of talented new and returning players. I look forward most to mentoring the young players and teaching them the values of rugby as the veteran players taught me when I was a freshman. We’re off to a strong start so far and we look forward to performing on the pitch this Spring!”

The 4-0 MCRC

Four weeks into the season and the MCRC keeps rolling! A week ago the Blue hosted their home opener against Bryant University. In front of a sizeable crowd the MCRC put on a show. The dominant Blue pack consistently gave the backs good ball allowing for plenty of tries against the Bryant defense. Tries came from scrummie Munya Munyati (‘20), lock Alex Hogenhuis (‘19), lock Campbell Boswell (‘19), and wingers Trevor Hopkins (‘20) and Lukas Cesena (’19), who were tied for league leading try scorer with six tries a piece after the game. Conversions came from both Munya Munyati and Kwame Mukasa and the MCRC defense only gave up one try. The final score for our home opener was 42-5.

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    This past weekend the MCRC made the trip down to Waltham, MA to play its toughest competition yet, Bentley University. Both Bentley and the Blue were undefeated going into the game but the MCRC came out victorious in a 17-7 battle. On what felt like a summer day, Campbell Boswell and Trevor Hopkins snuck into the try zone for the Blue and Kwame Mukasa kicked for points. The Blue are now 4-0 going into the last three regular season games, all at home. Parents Weekend on Oct. 14th brings Stonehill College, followed by Southern Connecticut College on Oct. 21st, and finally Homecoming and Alumni Weekend which brings Norwich University on Oct. 28th.  

 

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The 2017 Fall Season has Begun!

MCRC's 2017 season is off to a hot start! Our first game in the new Rugby Northeast Conference was against St. Mike’s. The team made the short jaunt to Winooski, Vermont where the MCRC last faced St. Mike’s two years ago. This year the MCRC won the season opener in a decisive victory. The blue pack started off strong and setup flanker Alex Hogenhouis (‘19) for the first Blue try of the season. The MCRC followed it up with another try off a Cooper Babbit (‘18.5) chip to winger Lukas Cesena (‘19)  who touched it down for his first career try. The next points came after a terrific line break from Kwame Mukasa(‘19) and Munya Munyati (‘20) that was finished off by inside center Mike Hayes (‘20). The blue scored 5 more tries: 2 for Trevor Hopkins (‘20), 1 for Senior Feb Captain Ben Manoukian(‘17.5), and 2 for Kwame Mukasa (‘19). Munya Munyati (‘20) coolly kicked conversions for the blue this weekend while the MCRC defense refused to let the Purple Knights in the try zone for the whole match. The final score was 46-0 for the MCRC pushing them up to the top of the Rugby Northeast standings.

 

Week two saw the MCRC take one of their longer trips of the year down to Providence College to face the Friars. The Friars are an entirely new opponent but the Blue made them play their game. The MCRC set the tone early with a try from winger Lukas Cesena(‘19) in the opening minutes of the game and a clean conversion from Kwame Mukasa (‘19). Sophomore Trevor “Two Tries” Hopkins (‘20) upgraded his moniker to “Triple Try Trev” after scoring three of the team’s six tries. Lukas Cesena (‘19) scored another try and Senior prop Matt MacKay (‘17) also got in on the action. Kwame Mukasa (‘19) added another three points with a penalty kick. The MCRC gave up just one try and a penalty kick to the Friars for a final score of 39-10.

 

The 2-0 MCRC is now moving into their home opener this Saturday, September 30th facing off against Bryant University.

 

To catch more news on the MCRC check out our Twitter, and Facebook.

 

 

 

The MCRC Wins the Public Service Leadership Award

May 3rd, 2017

The college presented the MCRC with the Public Service Leadership Award as recognition of the club's outstanding work in the local community. Over the past couple of years, Raouf Belkhir '17.5 and Doug Wilson '19 have worked tirelessly to establish a strong partnership with the Charter House, which provides meals and shelter to Middlebury's underserved population. This relationship supplements a longtime partnership with the Vermont Epilepsy Foundation, an organization that the MCRC has worked with for 13 years. Go Blue!

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Captain Jake Feury '16.5 Named Honorable Mention For Goff's DII Back MVP

Article By: Alex Goff

Link to full article: http://www.goffrugbyreport.com/news/dii-mvp-back-tom-st-pierre

Norwich University Scrumhalf Tom St. Pierre is the Goff Rugby Report Men's DII MVP Back. 

St. Pierre was voted by his players and coaches as the team’s best player of the game five times this season and he led the Cadets to an undefeated rugby in the NECRC. Norwich went on to beat Bentley and Rowan to make the final four. It was there the Cadets finally lost a game, getting upended by eventual champs Wisconsin-Whitewater, before beating Minnesota-Duluth for third.

St. Pierre was superb throughout the playoff run, and even in the loss against Whitewater, the scrumhalf was a crucial factor, scoring two tries and helping make the other two Norwich tries happen. 

A special athlete and a special leader, who has been lauded by his Head Coach Bob Weggler as the glue that keeps the team together who has a keen understanding of the game.

But more than that, St. Pierre gets the nod because he can change a game around, Playing in one of the most competitive conferences in DII rugby, and through a very difficult playoff run, Tom St. Pierre was the central leader, and someone who could create tries out of nothing.

Honorable Mention: This was, of course, a very difficult choice. Several talented rugby players deserved recognition for this award. Among our Honorable Mentions are:

Eric Pachowitz, Wisconsin-Whitewater

Trace Bolstad, Minnesota-Duluth

Jake Feury, Middlebury

Tyler Carlsgard, Coast Guard Academy

Jeffrey Rein, Furman

Caleb Lopez, Colorado School of Mines

Garrett Shibiliski, Wisconsin-Whitewater

Mike Ehrlich, Rowan

MCRC Captain Jake Feury '16.5 Named To Goff's Top 50 Backs in DII

Article By: Alex Goff

Link to original article: http://www.goffrugbyreport.com/news/top-50-backs-fall-dii

Goff Rugby Report has selected its Top 50 Backs in DII for the Fall of 2016. The observant reader will notice that there are actually 58 backs listed. That's because we couldn't whittle it down any further. Consider the last nine as tied. The players are listed by position, not by quality, so there is no ranking other than being in the Top 50. (Please note that the Salve Regina flyhalf is no relation to GRR Editor Alex Goff.)

Congratulations to all. More awards to come.

Goff Rugby Report Top 50 Men DII College Backs, Fall 2016

Player - Team - Position

Ben Morris - Montana State - Scrumhalf

Tom St. Pierre - Norwich - Scrumhalf

Jaime Serna - Principia - Scrumhalf

Cameron Hughes - Providence College - Scrumhalf

Justin Daisy - Rowan - Scrumhalf

Matt Calton - Sacred Heart - Scrumhalf

Declan Tidd - UNC-Charlotte - Scrumhalf

Tim Grams - UW-Whitewater - Scrumhalf

Taylor Egloff - Western State - Scrumhalf

Tyler Ringwood - William Paterson - Scrumhalf

TJ Grappin - Oakland University - Scrumhalf

Niall Collins - Bentley - Flyhalf

Jeffrey Rein - Furman - Flyhalf

Louis Ricard - GVSU - Flyhalf

Tim SowaI - UP - Flyhalf

John Schwarte - Northern Iowa- Flyhalf

Joe Goff - Salve Regina - Flyhalf

Dylan Carroll - Southern Conn. - Flyhalf

David Levy - SUNY Genseo - Flyhalf

Trace Bolstad - UM-Duluth - Flyhalf

Brandon Sorkin - UNC-Charlotte - Flyhalf

Eric Pachowitz - UW-Whitewater - Flyhalf

Blayze LiiLii - Western State - Flyhalf

Kenny Anderson - William Paterson - Flyhalf

Matt Grecky - Oakland University - Flyhalf

Nicholas Wallace - William Paterson - Flyhalf

Tyler Carlsgaard - Coast Guard - Center

Jason Lee - Colorado School of Mines - Center

Jacob Milchuck - Furman - Center

Adam Miller - Furman - Center

Jake Feury - Middlebury - Center

Austin Llewllyn - Montana State - Center

Josh Smith - North Dakota State - Center

Kyle Roder - Northern Iowa - Center

Logan Mate- Northern Michigan - Center

Mike Ehrlich -Rowan - Center

Danny Prinz - Sacred Heart - Center

Alex Fazio - Siena- Center

Ryan Guercio - St. Louis University - Center

Robert Wagner - Western State - Center

Trevon Pettigrew - Winona State - Center

Malachi McMullen - York -Center

Levi Van Lanen - UW-Whitewater - Center

Ryley Gerorgitsis - ISU - Wing

Seimou Smith - Southern Connecticut - Wing

Nem Nyangaresi - UM-Duluth - Wing

Alec Treuthardt - UW-Whitewater - Wing

Caleb Lopez - Colorado School of Mines - Wing

Ehron Enyedy- Oakland University - Wing

Matthias Newman - Furman - Fullback

Chris Audino - ISU - Fullback

Randy Tanaka - UM-Duluth - Fullback

Zach Phipps - UMS&T - Fullback

Blake Jackson - UNC-Charlotte - Fullback

Garrett Shibiliski - UW-Whitewater - Fullback

Eric Maudhuit - VMI - Fullback

Taylor Freund - Winona State - Fullback

Anthony Candrilli - fNorwich - Fullbac