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US Men's National Team Player Paul Emerick Visits Houston this Week

May 14, 2013 - Major League Soccer (MLS) Houston Dynamo

HOUSTON (May 14, 2013)-Team USA Rugby Ambassador Lands in Houston This Week! Rugby fans and media are invited to attend a series of rugby-specific events, clinics and more featuring the U.S. Men's National Team Ambassador Paul Emerick beginning Thursday, May 16 through Sunday, May 19.

Paul Emerick was first capped by the U.S. Men's National Rugby team, The Eagles, in April 2003 and as of September 2011, has been capped 45 more times. As of June 19, 2012, Emerick has notched 14 career tries for the United States, ranking him second on the all-time list and first among active players. He played university rugby with the University of Northern Iowa Panthers and senior rugby with the Chicago Lions before moving to Italian rugby.

Highlights of Emerick's visit include participating in a fan meet and greet; Rugby 101 presented by BackstageOL.com, a FREE, all-ages event focusing on teaching novice rugby fans the fundamentals of the sport along with hands-on demonstrations with college and high school players; and 610 Sports Radio Fan Fest ( http://houston.cbslocal.com/sportsradio-610-fan-fest-2013/ ), a family-friendly, FREE event celebrating the Houston sports fan with a line-up of sports legends and current players autograph sessions. Additional Fan Fest participants include: Houston Dynamo players Brad Davis and Tally Hall, Rudy Tomjanovich, Brooks Reed, Jose Cruz, Seth Payne and more.

Thursday, May 16:

6:30 PM Fan Meet & Greet (free event)

The Stag's Head Pub

2128 Portsmouth St, Houston, TX 77098

Media Contact: Stephanie Weaver, Harris County - Houston Sports Authority, c. 903-875-4341

Friday, May 17:

12:30 PM Rugby State Championship Trophy Presentation

St. Thomas High School

4500 Memorial Drive, Houston, TX 77007

Media Contact: Stephanie Weaver, Harris County - Houston Sports Authority, c. 903-875-4341

Saturday, May 18:

12:00 PM Rugby 101 presented by BackstageOL.com (free event)

Rice University Intramural Field 1 (Entrance 18)

Wilton & Rice Blvd, Houston, TX 77005

Media Contact: Stephanie Weaver, Harris County - Houston Sports Authority, c. 903-875-4341

5:30 PM Houston Dynamo vs. New England Revolution

Orange Avenue Pre-Game Fan Event

BBVA Compass Stadium

2200 Texas Street, Houston, TX, 77003

Media Contact: Stephanie Weaver, Harris County - Houston Sports Authority, c. 903-875-4341

Sunday, May 19:

12:00 PM 610 Sports Radio Fan Fest

University of Houston Athletic Alumni Center

3100 Cullen Blvd, Houston, TX, 77004

Media Contact: Stephanie Weaver, Harris County - Houston Sports Authority, c. 903-875-4341

Match Details

The U.S. Men's National Rugby Team, The Eagles, will host Ireland at BBVA Compass Stadium on Saturday, June 8th, as one of the only international matches being held in the U.S. this year. Kick-off is at 7:30 p.m. This match up offers rugby fans the opportunity to witness Ireland, a Tier 1 nation currently ranked 6th in world, battle on American soil against The Eagles, who are currently ranked 16th. The teams have previously faced off in 2009 and again in 2011 at the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand; both matches resulted in victory for Ireland. The U.S. Men's National Team will be seeking a long-awaited win as they face off again in Houston.

Tickets for the USA Rugby Men's Eagles vs. Ireland match are available starting at $20 online at www.bbvacompassstadium.com, www.axs.com or by calling 888-929-7849. Tickets are also available at the Ticket Office, open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Group tickets are available to groups of 10 or more by calling 713-547-3055.

Tailgating Contest

The inaugural Rugby Tailgating Contest is open to tailgating teams representing Team USA and Team Ireland. The event, which will award the grand prize presented by Kroger and Southern Comfort to the top tailgating team, will take place in Lots B & C adjacent to the stadium. Each team must register in advance online at www.bbvacompassstadium.com. Teams must be registered by Friday, May 31, 2013. Parking passes must be purchased in advance; parking for the tailgating contest will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Teams will be judged based on overall Tailgating Set-Up and Team Spirit. Tailgating set-up begins at 1 p.m. with contest judging at 4 p.m. For more information or questions, please contact info@bbvacompassstadium.com.

Official Rugby After Party

The party continues after the match with the Official USA Rugby vs. Ireland After Party presented by Southern Comfort at Warehouse Live ( www.warehouselive.com). The event, which is FREE with your game ticket, will feature more Irish music from The Blaggards along with Southern Comfort drink specials, the chance to meet and mingle with some of the players and other rugby fans and more!

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