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Friday, October 9, 2015

Top Sides Primed For West Coast 7s

One of the premier college 7s tournaments takes place this saturday as some of the top teams from around the West play in the the West Coast 7s at Cal Poly. Two time returning champion UCLA return to the tournament but the headlining side will be Cal who will be in action for the first time this season. The tournament will be streamed live on USARugbyTV.com beginning at 11:00 a.m. pt. The winner of the tournament will get an automatic qualification spot at the College 7s Nationals next May.

Cal come into the tournament as heavy favorites but have graduated some of their top players like last year. They gap between them and other 7s teams on the West Coast has also been shrinking as teams like UCLA close the gap. The Bruins will have a player like Niall Barry at their disposal and they should have plenty of pace and experience. Still, the Bears have plenty of experience with Andrew Battaglia, Anthony Salaber, Russell Webb, Jesse Milne, and Eakalafi Okusi all potentially playing. The Bears are also expected to play some younger players.

Take the jump to read more.
Most of the attention may be with Cal and UCLA but it would be foolish to count out the rest of the field that includes Arizona State, Arizona, Cal Poly, and UC Davis. The Sun Devils have been having a lot of 7s success recently and just two weeks ago played in the Viking 7s against Canadian teams and teams from the NCRC. Alex Sandstrom is coming on strong for the team. Arizona, Cal Poly, and UC Davis will all be looking to pull off some surprises.

Other teams playing in the tournament are Grand Canyon and Santa Barbara Community College. They will be in Pool A with Cal. Stanford will join UC Davis and UCLA in Pool 2. Arizona State is in Pool 3 with USC and SDSU. Lastly, Pool 4 has Nevada-Reno, Arizona, and Cal Poly.

According to tournament organizer Andy Doukas "Through our broadcast, we are reaching the rugby community in Europe and the powerhouse countries of the southern hemisphere....Much talent here in the states and recruiting is stretching worldwide. We are glad to develop our partnership with Sporple, and support their effort to connect athletes, agents and clubs globally.....Our showcase of US players and referees is to fulfill goals and promote rugby careers"

Now in its fifth year the tournament continues to go. From featuring 2nd sides in 2011 the tournament is now turning some teams away and is looking to expand next year.

The seedings for the tournament were chosen by the coaches.

2015 Coaches' Poll Results
Cal Poly
UC Davis
Santa Barb CC
Grand Canyon Un

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