Rugby United New York Re-Signs Mike Petri

Rugby United New York re-signed Mike Petri for the 2020 Major League Rugby season. The 35-year-old scrumhalf is 5’10”, and 190 lbs.

Mike was the team captain for the Roosters in 2019. Rooster #1 played 1114 minutes in all 17 matches while scoring 3 tries. He also carried 29 times for 140 meters, made 160 tackles, and kicked 75 times for 1660 meters. During RUNY’s 2018 exhibition season, he played in all three matches and scored three tries.

Mike had an outstanding 2019 MLR season and was named to the All-MLR Second Team. He also was named to the preliminary training squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Following the 2019 season, he continued to be involved with rugby coaching clinics. His rugby IQ and leadership are invaluable and New York Athletic Club Rugby recognized this, naming him the head coach for the 2019 Elite Cup season.

Mike’s rugby career began his freshman year in 1998 at Xavier High School. He helped to lead the team to 3rd place in the East Coast Championship in 1999, and to becoming East Coast Champions in 2000-2002. In 2000-2002 the team went to USA High School Nationals and finished in 4th, 3rd, and 4th place, respectively.

After graduating from Xavier, he attended Penn State University, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Life Sciences with a minor in Business in 2006. He achieved Collegiate All-American honors in rugby all four years, was selected. His Senior year he was Collegiate All-Star Tournament MVP and was the 2006 recipient of the Doug Edwards Award that was for the most outstanding collegiate rugby player.

Mike Petri and USA Rugby National Team

Petri also achieved National team honors, captaining the USA Rugby Under-19s and the Collegiate All-Americans. In 2007 he then made his Senior National team debut against South Africa on September 30 at Montpellier, France at the Rugby World Cup. He would go on to earn 57 caps, starting 40 matches and scoring 33 points through six tries and a drop goal.

Petri played in three Rugby World Cups beginning in 2007 in France, 2011 in New Zealand where he was the vice-captain, and in 2015 in the United Kingdom. In 2015 he retired from international test rugby following his RWC 2015 match against Japan at Gloucester on Oct 11.

Mike Petri and Club Rugby

After graduating from Penn State, Mike played for Belmont Shore RFC, helping them win the Super League Championship in 2007.

He then came back to New York and has played with New York Athletic Club since then. In 2008, 2010, and 2012 the team won the Super League Championship and in 2015 the Division 1 Club Championship. In 2010, while he was captain of the team, he was selected as the Finals MVP and he also achieved those honors in 2015. In 2011 he was also selected as the New York Athletic Club Male Athlete of the Year.

Mike also made an appearance in 2009 with the Barbarians touring side.

Mike Petri and Professional Rugby

Mike began his professional rugby career in 2010 with Premiership Rugby’s Sale Sharks. He then played with Pro12 Rugby’s Newport Gwent Dragons in 2010-2011, making three appearances.

With the formation of Major League Rugby, Mike played with Rugby United New York in 2018 for their three-match exhibition season and as the team’s captain during the 2019 season.

Mike Petri and Coaching

Since returning to New York, Mike has been an Assistant Rugby Coach at Xavier High School and has served as the Strength and Conditioning Co-Director.

During his tenure at Xavier High School, the team placed 3rd in Nationals in 2012, were the Rugby NY Champions in 2013-2018 and the team went to Nationals each of those years, finishing 3rd, 4th, 5th, 3rd, 6th, and in 4th place, respectively.

Petri has also been a Nike Summer Camp Director since 2013 and a Hofstra University Camp Director since 2016.

In 2019 Mike continued to run coaching clinics and became the head coach of the New York Athletic Club’s Rugby team.

Mike Petri, Author

Petri is also an accomplished author, writing the successful children’s alphabet book R is for Rugby, which was published in June 2015. You can purchase his work here.

Mike Petri Interview

Mike Petri, Rugby United New York Captain, reflects on role as captain, discusses balancing teaching, family, and rugby, as well as short term rugby goals. (Interview on May 26, 2019, at MCU Park following the team’s match against NOLA Gold Rugby.)

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant