Freshman Flyhalf Patrick Madden has been awarded the prestigious Mark Loane Medal at a ceremony in New York last week. Awarded in honor of Dr. Mark Loane, former Australian Wallabies rugby captain and University of Queensland (UQ) alumnus, the Medal recognizes the outstanding potential of America’s best high school rugby player.
In response to receiving the award, Patrick is “extremely grateful for this opportunity and excited for what’s to come. I know I speak for both myself and my family when I say I’m happy to be in such good hands through this exciting process.”
Patrick founded, captained, and played rugby at his high school, University City. While there, he was named Player of the Week several times in the Goff Rugby Report. Patrick also started playing select-side rugby his freshman year of high school. He started with the Southern California Youth Griffins and then became one of the original and youngest players in the Eagle Impact Rugby Academy (EIRA), created by High School All-American (HSAA) Coach Salty Thompson. As captain, Patrick led EIRA to 7s and 15s national titles, received MVP in the Las Vegas Invitational Tournament, and won the Ramblin’ Jesters’ Young 7s Player of the Month award. Patrick joined the HSAA program his sophomore year for tours to France and Belgium. He also represented the HSAA and Stars and Stripes sides in both 7s and 15s on tours to Canada and in matches throughout the US. To top it off, Patrick was selected for the Men’s Junior All-American U19 team that played Canada at the Olympic Training Centre in the winter of 2016.
Salty Thompson, who was on the Cal Poly campus last month for an (EIRA) camp, and who nominated Patrick for the Loane Medal, believes Pat has a huge future in the sport. He regards Patrick as “one of the most effective captains in HSAA history. Leader, excellent communicator and outstanding young man.”
As the recipient of the Loane Medal, Pat will be funded to train with the UQ Rugby Academy and play for the famous University of Queensland Rugby Club during summer 2018.
Patrick “can’t wait to get to UQ, meet [his] teammates, and experience the Australian rugby culture and university lifestyle.”
Cal Poly coach James Tesoriero speaks of Patrick’s award. “We followed Patrick’s high school career with close interest, and were delighted when he accepted his offer to study at Cal Poly. Not only is Pat an elite-level talent who projects to the very highest levels of rugby in this country, he is a quality young guy, and a good fit with our program. Beyond the recognition that he will receive from this award, we are excited at the opportunity for Pat to train and play in a high performance environment next summer with UQ in Brisbane”.
Since arriving in San Luis Obispo, Patrick has been playing a key role for the Cal Poly 7s team, finishing the Fall 7s season as the team’s highest point scorer. The Cal Poly 7s team played in division Finals at both of the West Coast Sevens tournaments in October, and finished fourth at the Silicon Valley Sevens in San Jose on the weekend (11/4 & 11/5).
Later this fall, Patrick will represent the North American Lions, a team comprising the best 7s players in North America aged under 19 years. The Lions will participate in the Boys U19 Invitational bracket of the Dubai 7s — the series of events surrounding the World Series Dubai 7s, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 2.