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Monday, December 11, 2017

Eagles Finish Sixth In Cape Town

One week after putting in one of their worst tournaments in years at the Dubai 7s the Eagles rebounded with a very strong effort in Cape Town to finish sixth. The results still have them toward the bottom of the table--that's what happens when you finish very low one week--but it does give them plenty of momentum heading into the Sydney and Hamilton legs of the Series. It wasn't a perfect weekend by any means but it the Eagles were much better in nearly every facet of the game. They did miss Perry Baker but at the same time were able to find someone to score some tries.

Day One

Day one began with a very tough match against New Zealand. The U.S. struggled against the All Blacks last week but this week had no such difficulty as they cruised to a 22-0 win. Their defensive effort was very good and it translated into points. New Zealand had most of the possession early but when the Eagles first had their chance as they took it with Carlin Isles scoring a pair of tries to kick things off. Finding him in space was key for the Eagles. Make Unufe and Ben Pinkelman had tries in the match. Making the result impressive was that New Zealand would go on to win the tournament.

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Up next for the Eagles was Australia. They U.S. has traditionally had the better of Australia in recent years except for the final of the Silicon Valley 7s. The good fortune continued for the Eagles in Series play as they won comfortably 31-14. Australia scored first but soon the Eagles onslaught began with Isles scored three tries in the match. He had the first two for the Eagles before Steve Tomasin scored. Isles would get his third along with a try from Hughes.

Having won two matches and secured a top eight spot the U.S. faced Spain to go perfect in the pool. Spain were a tough team all weekend but were not match for the Eagles. The U.S. went up 26-0 before Spain scored to make the final 26-5. Kevon Williams, Hughes, Unufe, and Tomasin all had tries.

Day Two

The toughest match for the Eagles need up being their Cup quarterfinal against Argentina. The Argentines were in very good form throughout the weekend as evidenced by their second place finish.  Argentina opened up a 14-0 lead in the first half. The U.S. did have their chances but were snuffed out to end the half scoreless. Penalties and costly errors hurt the U.S. in the second half as Argentina went up 21-0. The U.S. finally got on the board through Pinkelman but by that point Argentina had a stranglehold on the match. Each team scored once more to make it 28-12.

After that things went much better for the U.S. against France in their Plate semi-final. Pinkelman and Folau Niua scored early for the U.S. as they did what Argentina had done to them. France came back with a try but an effort from Hughes extended the lead. From there the U.S. and France swapped tries--like in the Argentina match-- to win 29-12.

The last match of the day ended in disappointment with the U.S. falling to Fiji 26-12. Fiji scored twice to lead 12-0. Tomasin was able to get the U.S. back in it with an unconverted try. Unfortunately Fiji were very difficult to stop as they scored twice more to push their lead. The U.S. scored a late try from Maka Unufe.


  1. Should be a big shoutout for ESPN3. The live and archived functions allowed anyone with any time to spare at any time to pick up all the Eagles games and any other of all the games. Same feed as World Rugby.
    Deserves more publicity.