The USA Men’s Eagle Sevens team went 1-2 on the first day of the Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens and will play Russia in the Bowl Quarterfinals to start the second day of action tomorrow (Sunday May 6). That game kicks off at 3:30 a.m. MDT/5:30 a.m. EDT and will be shown live on UniversalSports.com and on tape delay on Universal Sports (2-4 p.m. EDT) and NBC Sports Network (May 7, 12:30 -2:30 a.m. EDT).
A 29-14 win over Kenya to end the first day was a good way to finish, but the Eagles know that they just missed out on making their first Cup Quarterfinal appearance of the season.
Two tough losses to England and Australia on day one could have gone either way, but the Eagles took their foot off the throttle in both games and both got away from them.
The Eagles were up 14-12 at halftime against Australia and were tied at 12-12 with England for a majority of the second half of that game but they weren’t able to put them away.
Against England, turnovers and kicking away possession opened the door for the English to take the lead late.
“We played ourselves into a position to win that game, but we gave away possession too easily,” said Magleby. “A turnover here or there and that’s the game. That’s sevens for you.”
In the Australia match, the turning point was when a near try by the Eagles turned into an Australia break and eventual 95 meter score. Two Aussie tries in the last 90 seconds did the Eagles in.
The ability to finish strong and keep a lead are two areas the USA will need to improve on.
The USA attack looked to be in good shape though. Colin Hawley and Folau Niua were solid performers on day one as was their captain Shalom Suniula.
Rocco Mauer lit up the scoreboard against Kenya and his speed is becoming well known on the Series. That speed can create opportunities for Mauer of course, but also scoring chances for his teammates if the opposition is paying too much attention to the speedster on the wing.
Playing Russia, a budding rival of the USA, in the Bowl Quarterfinals of the Glasgow Sevens will be a good test for the Eagles.
“Russia is a good team. They did some good things today and if they collect all of those things and do them at the same time they can be very good," said Magleby.
Overall, the Eagles are making strides as a group and individual players are building confidence, which bodes very well for day two of Glasgow and also the London Sevens next week.
“We are starting to get in a position where we can compete. The areas we have been concentrating on have seen a lot of improvement since Japan [in March],” said Magleby.
Tries: Niua, Hawley
Cons: Niua (2)
Tries: Lucas, Parahi, Walker, Foley, Rasolea
Cons: Lucas (2)
Tries: Hawley, Mauer
Tries: Mitchell, Rodwell, Turner
Cons: Mitchell (2)
Tries: Palefau, Durutalo, Punimata, Mauer (2)
Cons: Niua (2)
Tries: Ayange, Ashioya
Cons: Asego (2)
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