American Raptors Announce 2024 Roster

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A rugby player is being tackled by another player.

GLENDALE, COLORADO – The American Raptors are thrilled to announce their roster for the 2024 Super Rugby Americas season. With 29 players eligible for Eagles selection within the squad of 35, the American Raptors’ mission to develop the best young American talent is hitting full stride going into their second season of competing in Super Rugby Americas. Marking a strategic blend of experience and fresh young talent, the Raptors have expanded their lineup by adding 19 promising new players while retaining the skills of 16 seasoned athletes.  

Mikey Grandy returns for his fourth season with the Raptors. Grandy joined the Raptors ahead of the Fall 2021 season as a newcomer to rugby. He participated in 10 matches for the Raptors in 2023, earning seven starts at lock. In the 429 minutes he played in 2023, he made 25 tackles, carried the ball 32 times, and scored one try in the Round 7 loss to Cobras Brasil XV. 

Before taking up the sport, Grandy spent two years as an offensive lineman for the College of San Mateo before earning a scholarship to continue his football career at the University of Texas.

Diego Fortuny returns for his second season with the Raptors. Fortuny started at hooker for 11 of the 12 matches that the Raptors played in 2023. He led the Raptors in tackles with 90 and finished the season with the second-most carries in 2023 with 79. Fortuny scored three tries and finished the season with two Super Rugby Americas First XV honors in Round 7 and Round 14. 

Fortuny joined the Raptors ahead of their 2023 Super Rugby Americas campaign after a three-year stint with Major League Rugby’s Houston SaberCats. Fortuny represented Argentina XV in the Americas Rugby Championship in 2016, at the 2018 and 2019 Nations Cup, and in one match against South Africa.

Ignacio Mieres joins the Raptors for his first season with the team. The 36-year-old is a highly accomplished, well-traveled professional rugby player. Mieres has played for the Leicester Tigers, Exeter Chiefs, and Worcester Warriors in England, and has also played for Stade Français, Perpignan, Dax, Agen, Marmande, Dijon, and Suresnes in France. Mieres was a Puma from 2007-2012. He debuted against Chile in 2007 and went on to earn six test caps.

Facundo Ignacio Pomponio joins the Raptors for his first season with the team. The 31-year-old earned Super Rugby Americas Tighthead Prop of the Year honors in 2023 as a member of Yacare XV after an impressive stretch in the late rounds of the regular season. Pomponio has played for Floirac, Vannes, and Céret in France, and has also played for Sanitas Alcobendas Rugby in Spain. Pomponio also played for fellow Super Americas Rugby club Peñarol in 2021.

The Raptors finished the 2023 season with a 2-10 overall record, including a 38-34 victory over Cobras Brasil XV to finish the season. The Raptors also defeated Selknam 26-22 in round 8 and suffered close losses to Peñarol, Pampas, and Yacare XV throughout the season. 

The club begins its 2024 season with a three-match road trip to Argentina and Uruguay before returning to Infinity Park for six straight home games. They finish the season back on the road traveling to Brazil, Paraguay, and Chile.

2024 American Raptors Roster

Aidan Christians
Alexander ‘Mo’ Vainikolo
Cian Barry
Clay Markoff
Daytwon Sheridan
Devereaux Ferris
Diego Fortuny
Diego Magno
Donald Martin
Ethyn Baker
Facundo Ignacio Pomponio
Feofaaki Pulu
Francisco Liam Quinn
Gabriel Mahuinga
Ignacio Mieres
Isikeli Kava
Jackson Zabierek
Jacob Hidalgo

Javon Camp-Villalovos
John LeFevre
Koby Baker
Luke Mallette
Ma’ake Muti
Mikey Grandy
Patrick Madden
Rufus McLean
Shawn Clark
Sione Talisa
Tavius Sykora-Matthess
Thomas Morani
Tommy Clark
Uatesoni ‘Watson’ Filikitonga
William Crawford
Zachary Hall
Zachary Jessell

Links For More Information:

City of Glendale
American Raptors
Super Rugby Americas
RugbyTown USA

Snaps from Round 3️⃣ presented by @co_school_healing_arts 
We're resting up on a bye this week before we return to @rugbytownofficial for our first home match next weekend!
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Final from Uruguay.
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We trail at the half. 
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