Christendom College will welcome Franciscan University of Steubenville and Ave Maria University to campus for the first-ever Frassati Invitational rugby tournament on April 1. Promising three matches of hard-hitting, exciting rugby action, the event will also feature family-friendly activities, concessions, and more, all in the shadows of the Blue Ridge Mountains on Christendom’s Front Royal, Va., campus.
“Rugby is one of the most popular sports at Christendom. With its fast pace, hard hits, and high energy, it is one of the most exciting sporting events to watch on campus. This year, we wanted to take that event-status to the next level and invite the rugby teams from Franciscan University and Ave Maria University to our campus for an entirely unique competition — a Catholic rugby tournament,” says athletic director Patrick Quest. “We cannot wait to see the high level of competition to be displayed, and to welcome all of the alumni and current students from each of the schools to our campus for this one of a kind event.”
The tournament will have a round robin format, with the team that wins both of its games winning the tournament. The games will take place on Christendom’s Crusader Fields, with the first game beginning at 10:00 a.m. as the Christendom Crusaders take on the Ave Maria Papists. Following the first game, the Papists will play against the Franciscan University Barons at 12:30 p.m., with the Barons taking on the Crusaders to finish the day at 3:00 p.m.
Throughout the day, families will have the opportunity to watch the games, enjoy moon bounces, and partake of a cookout on Crusader Fields. Apparel commemorating the first Frassati Invitational will also be available for purchase.
The Invitational is an expansion of the annual Shield Rugby Match, which was previously played between Christendom and Franciscan the past three years. The winner of the Invitational will take home the Shield Trophy, which they will proudly display at their school for a year until the next tournament.
The Crusaders, who are currently 4-1-1 on the season, are looking to defend the trophy for the third year in a row.
Gates open for visitors to Christendom at 9:30 a.m., with parking costing $10 per car.