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USA Wheelchair Rugby

Lakeshore is proud to be the home and High Performance Management Organization of USA Wheelchair Rugby (USAWR). For more information on USA Wheelchair Rugby, visit usawr.org and follow the team on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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12 USA Wheelchair Rugby players wearing blue jackets smile in 2 lines

After an additional year of training and waiting, the 12-member Tokyo 2020 U.S. Paralympic Team was named following a May training camp at Lakeshore.

“We believe that we have put together a great balance of functional athletes that will give us a chance to compete for the gold medal,” said U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Head Coach James Gumbert. “This team is one of the most driven and focused I have ever worked with and their desire to finish what they started is inspiring. During the past year many of us have experienced so many hardships and setbacks, but these elite athletes have stayed on point and continued to push each other to be the best they can be,” Gumbert added.

The team will return to Lakeshore for two more training camps, June 10-21 and August 7-17, before leaving for Tokyo. The Paralympic Games take place August 24 to September 5, 2021. This will be the seventh Games that has featured wheelchair rugby. After bronze and silver medal finishes in London 2012 and Rio 2016, the team has its sights set on gold. To learn more about the players and competition results, visit usawr.org.

Tokyo 2020 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team

#2 Chuck Melton (Richview, IL)
#3 Joe Jackson (Maricopa, AZ)
#4 Adam Scaturro (Lakewood, CO)
#5 Chuck Aoki (Minneapolis, MN)
#6 Jeff Butler (Austin, TX)
#9 Eric Newby (Bailey, CO)
#10 Josh Wheeler (Tucson, AZ)
#11 Lee Fredette (East Moriches, NY)
#12 Chad Cohn (Tucson, AZ)
#14 Joe Delagrave (Prairie du Chien, WI)
#22 Kory Puderbaugh (Boise, ID)
#33 Ray Hennagir (Deptford, NJ)

Alternates

Ernie Chun (Phoenix, AZ)
Jake Daily (Belleville, IL)
Liz Dunn (Pittsburgh, PA)
Montrerius Hucherson (Tallassee, AL)

Staff

Mandy Goff, High Performance Manager and Team Lead
James Gumbert, Head Coach
Sue Tucker, Assistant Coach
Jim Murdock, ATC/Medical Coordinator
Bob Murray, Equipment and Bench Staff
Chuck French, Equipment and Bench Staff
Meg Smith, Sports Psychology Provider
Sharon Moskowitz, Strength & Conditioning
Amy Claire McMurtrie, Dietician
Lexi Coon, Photographer
Jen Allred, Press Officer

Wheelchair rugby player reaches for ball

What is Wheelchair Rugby?

Wheelchair Rugby is a sport with roots grounded in wheelchair basketball and ice hockey and was developed by three Canadians from Winnipeg, Manitoba as an opportunity for athletes with quadriplegia to compete. The sport was originally called Murderball due to the aggressive nature of the game. It was introduced to the United States in 1979 at a demonstration at Southwest Minnesota State University. In 1981, Brad Mikkelsen, with the aid of the University of North Dakota’s Disabled Student Services, formed the first team, the Wallbangers, and changed the game’s name from Murderball to quad rugby. Today it is called wheelchair rugby.

In 1988, the United States Quad Rugby Association (USQRA) was formed to help regulate and promote the sport on both a national and international level. There are now more than 40 organized teams in the United States with many others in the developmental stage. In addition to the teams in the U.S., there are at least 29 international teams with 20 more in the development stage. Wheelchair rugby is one of the fastest growing wheelchair sports in the world.

USA Wheelchair Rugby is committed to providing an equal opportunity to amateur athletes, coaches, trainers, managers, administrators, and officials to participate in amateur athletic competition, without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, age, or sex, and with fair notice and opportunity for a hearing before declaring any such individual ineligible to participate.




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