August 10, 2016
Team USA Men’s Rugby Sevens Beats Brazil in Olympics Place Semi Final
Photo: Team USA Men’s Rugby Sevens
The Team USA Men’s Rugby Sevens team had to quickly wipe out their disappointment on narrowly not advancing to the quarterfinals and turn their attention to beating Brazil in the Place Semi-Finals.
The USA had come to within a difficult conversion of advancing to the quarterfinals in their loss earlier in the day to the number one ranked team in the world, Fiji.
While the the goals of getting a medal at the Olympics were not met, the Eagles battled in each match and were in contention in each match to the end. They ended Pool play at 1-2 beginning with a 3 point loss to Argentina with no time, a 26-0 win against Brazil and a 5 point loss to Fiji.
Nate Ebner perspective on the exposure rugby received in the United States is right on target. In his post Fiji match remarks about the two three-day Rugby Sevens competitions he said that “This is huge for the sport. We got here and tried to give this everything that we have. Hopefully the American people see how great of a sport this really is. It’s going to be up to America and the people in the United States, how they respond to what they’ve seen.”
“We’re all disappointed. We’re all absolutely gutted and heartbroken, but we’ll circle the wagons and come out and put out a performance in the next game that will typify and illustrate what this team, this country is all about.”
In any athletic competition, there are winners and losers. While the results were not what the Team USA Men’s Rugby Sevens wanted, they are not a loser. They have embodied the Olympic spirit, competing to the end and have represented the USA well. I expect them to regroup and continue to produce the same effort in their concluding matches.
They, as well as the athletes that have been part of the USA Rugby Sevens program, will be viewed as trail blazers that have been instrumental in the growth of rugby in the United States.
Place 9-12 Semi-Final: Team USA v Brazil
Pool Round 1
- Australia 14-31 France
- South Africa 24-0 Spain
- Great Britain 31-7 Kenya
- New Zealand 12-14 Japan
- USA 14-17 Argentina
- Fiji 40-12 Brazil
Pool Round 2
- Australia 26-12 Spain
- South Africa 26-0 France
- Great Britain 21-19 Japan
- New Zealand 28-5 Kenya
- USA 26-0 Brazil
- Fiji 21-14 Argentina
Pool Round 3
- France 26-5 Spain
- South Africa 5-12 Australia
- Kenya 7-31 Japan
- New Zealand 19-21 Great Britain
- Argentina 31-0 Brazil
- Fiji 24-19 USA
- USA 24-12 Brazil
- Spain 14-12 Kenya
- Fiji 12-7 New Zealand
- Japan 12-7 France
- Great Britain 5-0 Argentina – Extra Time
- South Africa 22-5 Australia
Team USA Rugby Sevens Squad – Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games
1. Carlin Isles 2. Ben Pinkelman 3. Danny Barrett 4. Garrett Bender 5. Zack Test 6. Andrew Durutalo 7. Folau Niua 8. Maka Unufe 9. Chris Wyles 10. Madison Hughes 11. Perry Baker 12. Nate Ebner
USA Starters v Brazil: Baker, Barrett, Bender, Ebner, Hughes, Niua, Pinkelman
USA Substitutions: Isles, Test, Durutalo, Unufe, Wyles
Team USA Rugby Sevens – Traveling Reserves
Nate Augspurger, Martin Iosefo, Shalom Suniula
Placing Semifinal v Brazil W24-12
Preview article: Team USA Men’s Rugby Opens Rio Olympic Sevens Against Argentina
View the Olympic Rugby Squads!