The USA Rugby League 2016 schedule has been officially approved by all clubs and is now available for players and fans to plan their season for home and travel.
2016 will see the USARL remain at a 14 team competition with new club White Plains Wombats replacing the Connecticut Wildcats in the North-east Division.
The USARL will commence on June 4th where teams up and down the east coast of America will battle it out in a North & South competition format. The winner will of each conference will play against each other in the National Championship Final on August 23rd (location TBA.)
Season VI kicks off on June 4 with last year's champions the Boston 13s taking on neighboring rival Rhode Island Rebellion who will be looking to rebound after a disappointing finish in last year’s North-east Division final.
Boston 13s Captain Marcos Flegman commented, "Everyone in the 13s family is really excited for the coming season, the flavour that the championship left in our mouths has made us hungrier for more. This season the core of the team will be the same which will help us give the team some continuity from last year and become a better and stronger team."
With the 13s reigning champions, coach Robin Peers was asked about his thoughts for the upcoming season. "We also know that as 2015 champions we will have a target on our backs and that because of that no game will be an easy game." he continues… "The Rhode Island Rebellion and Brooklyn Kings get stronger each year and the New York Knights finished strong in 2015 after taking a few early weeks to find their feet in the USARL."
Down South, the USARL continues to take leaps and bounds with the South conference only in its 3rd year of formation. Last year’s South Champions, Atlanta Rhinos will be looking to improve on their season falling short in the National Championship last year.
Nick Newlin, captain of the Atlanta Rhinos and a key member in the USA's recent success at the World Cup Qualifiers spoke about the Rhinos in 2016, "2015 was quite successful and I think we realized our potential as a club, although missing a National Championship victory it showed us what our weaknesses are when facing some of the best competition in the USARL. With a bit more structure, another year of experience for most of the guys along with some added talent, I think we will be force again not only in the South but the USARL as a whole."
Season VI kicks off June with full domestic schedule listed below.
Week 1: June 4
Week 2: June 11
Week 3: June 18
Week 4: June 25
Week 5: July 9
Week 6: July 16
Week 7: July 23
Week 8: July 30
Playoffs Round 1: August 6th
Playoffs Round 2: August 13th
South Championship: August 13th
North Championship: August 20th
National Championship: August 27th