Ken Brischke, Bob Lesnansky, David Doessel, Bill Baer, Herk Koranski, David White
2000 Tournament Committee
Prior to the Rocky Mountain Challenge, the primary selection vehicle for USA Under 19 development squad was the National High School Rugby Championship matches. Although the best players U-19 rugby players in the United States participated as teams in that tournament, if you were a good rugby player and your team didn’t make it into the last 16 teams in the nation, you may not get an opportunity to be seen by the USA U-19 Rugby Coaches.
In 1999, Ken Brischke proposed that the Colorado Rugby Union (ERRFU) host a select side tournament after the High School National Championship with the vision to help organize LAU’s in building All Star programs that were more similar to the USA Men’s selection process.
So after a winter of planning and the high school season behind us, the invitations were extended to several Rugby Unions and the Rocky Mountain Challenge was born. The committee worked very hard that year to prepare and repair the playing surface at North Middle School by bringing in 100 cubic yards of topsoil from the hospital construction to the east and courtesy Hensel Phelps to level the field. Then 20,000 square feet of sod donated by Emerald Green Turf Farms all watered each morning from 600 ft of hose running from Whitey’s friend from high school’s house, across the alley from the field.
Four teams met on fathers day weekend at North Middle School in Aurora. The Unions represented were Texas, Ozark, Heart of America and ERRFU. USA Coaches and Selectors were invited and …..made the USA U-19 squad.