5 Gators Selected to Under 19 Australian Team

Five members of the UTS Gators Colts team have been selected to the Australian Outback squads for the 2016 IFAF Under 19 World Championships in China, 4 to the A Squad and 1 to the B Squad.

Free Safety - Tyler Cawood

Free Safety – Tyler Cawood

Running Back - Rinaldo Gagiano

Running Back – Rinaldo Gagiano

Tyler Cawood earned himself a call to try-outs with a good 2015 season to mark his second year with UTS. Shoring up the role of free safety, his aggressive tackling style made anyone looking for a pass over the middle, keep their eyes more on him than the football. It is undoubtable that this was one of the traits that led to his selection in the A Squad.

Rinaldo Gagiano’s second year in the game was one to remember. After playing a pivotal role in the NSW Wolverines team at the Junior Nationals in April where he earned both NSW and Tournament MVP awards, he followed this up with the Outback team in the World Championships Oceania Qualifier in July. His strong showing at the start of the UTS Gators season looked sure to follow a similar pattern until a mid-season injury ended his 2015 season. Being named to the A Squad for the World Cup team rights his course and looks to make 2016 another strong season for the Gators’ running back.

After two years with the Central Coast Sharks and representing NSW with the Wolverines at the 2015 Junior Nationals, Blake King overcame the withdrawal of the Sharks in season 2015 by finding a new home with the UTS Gators. His tireless work at defensive back throughout the year earned him Team MVP status and has been capped off by a call-up to the A Squad.

Robert Pahulu has had a rookie season to be dreamt of. Making enough of a mark as part of the NSW Wolverines at the Junior Nationals to earn a spot on the Outback World Championships Oceania Qualifier team is how he started the year, and he finished it as a core part of the UTS Gators linebacker crew. Making the A Squad for the World Cup Outback team ensures that 2016 is likely to be even bigger.

David Fonti transferred to the UTS Gators for the 2015 Colts season, and while recovery from an off-season injury meant a slow start to the season for the versatile utility player, Fonti eventually found his niche in the latter half of the year. His fearlessness on the field translated into taking on the core running back duties late in the season and resulted in his announcement as part of the B Squad for the Outback.

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