Thursday, October 25, 2012
Women Eagles Get Unexpected Opportunity
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Most of the team is travelling to China with eight of the ten players under contract making the trip. Vanesha McGee and Kaelene Lundstrum are missing the trip due to injury. (Read Jackie Finlan’s great article about the team.) The only college players on the team are BYU’s Rebekah Siebach and Eastern Illinois’s Lauren Doyle.
The fact that head coach Ric Suggitt is able to take the bulk of his squad over the China is going to help the team in Dubai. As Suggitt mentioned in Finlan’s article, he is shifting around a few players in order to get the best combination out there on the field. The women’s 7’s team doesn’t have enough of these opportunities as it is, so having this weekend gifted to them is a plus. It will also be good for the team to hit someone besides a teammate.
The U.S. is in Pool A along with Singapore, the Philippines, and host-China. Singapore and the Philippines are developing teams and should allow the U.S. to try out different combinations and to get younger players experience. China on the other hand, can be a very tough team, especially at home. Even though China can play well, they have gone backwards the last few years and the U.S. has handled them well during that time. The big test for the team is whether or not they can put China away comfortably. If they can, then they know they have made progress.
The same goes for their potential match against South Africa on day two. South Africa are in Pool B with Kazakhstan, Thailand, and a second China team. China and South Africa are not likely to win a medal or the World Cup next year, but they are dangerous enough to derail U.S. hopes at those tournaments. It’s important for the Eagles to gain confidence by putting these teams away. If they can do that, then they can focus on the New Zealand’s and England’s of the world.
Bui Baravilala (U.S.A. Rugby)
Emilie Bydwell (U.S.A. Rugby)
Katie Dowty (U.S.A. Rugby)
Lauren Doyle (Eastern Illinois)
Vix Folayan (U.S.A. Rugby)
Kelly Griffin (U.S.A. Rugby)
Nathalie Marchino (U.S.A. Rugby)
Deven Owsiany (U.S.A. Rugby)
Jillion Potter (U.S.A. Rugby)
Christy Ringgenberg (U.S.A. Rugby)
Kimber Rozier (U.S.A. Rugby)
Rebekah Siebach (Women’s Cougar Rugby)
Unavailable due to injury: Vanesha McGee (U.S.A. Rugby), Kaelene Lundstrum (U.S.A. Rugby)