Iowa Central’s Pruisner named to U-20 All-American rugby squad
Lane Pruisner had an immediate impact on the Iowa Central rugby program, and the freshman has been honored accordingly.
Helping the Tritons to the Div. 1AA national championship in his rookie campaign, the Ankeny Centennial graduate played a pivotal role in the program’s success this past season. As a result, Pruisner was recently named a member of the 2020 USA Rugby Men’s Under-20 All-American team.
“Lane is an exceptional young man,” ICCC head coach Brent Nelson said. “As good of an athlete as he is, he’s an even better person. When we recruited Lane, it was clear what type of kid we were getting very early in the process. He was hungry to learn, and really wanted to take his game to the next level.
“What’s remarkable about Lane is that he did this with very little 15s experience coming into his freshman campaign at Iowa Central. Almost all of his high school rugby was 7s.”
Pruisner was one of 33 players to make the cut. Twenty are from either universities, colleges or junior colleges in the United States.
“There was some good competition at his position, and that sense of iron sharpening iron really rang true,” Nelson said. “Lane is extremely bright, so feeding him knowledge gets absorbed very quickly. He is a coach’s dream when it comes to that. He’s also one of the top two or three strongest kids on the team, and loves coach Miguel Secor’s strength training.
“He gets after it in the weight room, on the pitch and in the classroom. He’s just a phenomenal young man all around.”
Pruisner was an all-state lineman in football and 220-pound wrestler at Centennial. He was a four-year varsity rugby player for the Jaguars, a three-time program captain and an elite all-state selection.
Iowa Central defeated Western Michigan for the 1AA national title in December.
“I chose Iowa Central because I knew I could get a good education for not as much money, I loved the campus, and the brotherhood the rugby team has,” Pruisner said. “And I get to play the sport I love.”
Competition at the inaugural Men’s U20 Americas Rugby Championship was postponed due to COVID-19. A make-up date has yet to be determined.
If the U20 ARC is canceled altogether, head coach Scott Bracken confirmed that alternative competitions will be considered to give Pruisner and the others a chance to represent Team USA.
Pruisner is a pre-engineering student. He also garnered Top-150 overall D1AA rugby honors, and was named one of the Top-10 players at his position in the country.