Eagles 7s Defeat Tonga 29-7 at Silicon Valley 7s
The Eagles 7s came back from a 7-0 deficit and scored 29 unanswered points to defeat Tonga in their first Pool C match at the Silicon Valley 7s at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, California. All matches for the November 4-5, 2017 tournament are being streamed live by USA Sevens Rugby on their Facebook page.
The Eagles 7s will play New Zealand next at 4:28 PT before completing their Pool play at 8 pm PT against Chile. In the match between New Zealand and Chile, the Cóndores 7s upset New Zealand 7-0.
Eagles 7s Defeat Tonga Recap
The Eagles played Tonga in their first Pool C match with the slick ball from the rain impacting handling. This match followed the other Pool C match as Chile upset New Zealand 7-0.
The Eagles 7s had the first scoring opportunity of the match, but Matei Leuta was deemed held up in-goal and the Eagles lost possession after winning the ensuing 5-meter scrum.
Tonga would score first as Tevita Alatini was tackled by Matai Leuta and Folau Niua, but a pop pass to Viliami Soakai resulted in a try for an early 7-0 lead.
Tonga had another threat thwarted when Chris Matina angled the defender into touch saving a potential try.
The Eagles 7s then answered back after Tonga restart went through in-goal. The Eagles took the free kick from midfield and went out wide to Malon Al-Jiboori and Stephen Tomasin scampered blind after the breakdown for a try to narrow the lead at the break to 7-5.
Martin Iosefo took the opening restart and Malon Al-Jiboori ran through two defenders. After quick ball from the breakdown, an Iosefo to Tomasin offload resulted in a try in the corner. Folau Niua converted the ball from touch for their first lead of the match, 12-7.
The Eagles Claimed the restart and advance to the Tonga 22 meters before a handling error gave up possession. Thanks to a Ben Pinkelman poach, the Eagles spun the ball wide left and a Kevon Williams try gave the USA a 17-5 lead.
Tomasin added a third try with Niua converting to increase the lead to 24-7. The ensuing restart went to Tonga and Niua stripped the ball and offloaded to Joe Schroeder who advanced to within 5 meters of the line. At the breakdown, the ball went wide left and Kevon Williams offloaded to Tomasin for his fourth try and a 29-7 victory.
The Eagles 7s will play New Zealand next at 8 pm PT.
Silicon Valley 7s Schedule
USA Rugby Men’s Sevens – Saturday, November 4th, 2017
United States v Tonga – W 29-7
New Zealand v United States – 4:28pm PT (7:28pm ET)
United States v Chile – 8:00pm PT (11pm ET)
USA: 1. Malon Al-Jiboori 2. Ben Pinkelman (C) 3. Joe Schroeder 4. Matai Leuta 5. Ryan Matyas 6. Anthony Welmers 7. Folau Niua 8. Maka Unufe Jr. 9. Stephen Tomasin 10. Chris Mattina 11. Kevon Williams 12. Martin Iosefo 13. Madison Hughes
USA Rugby Men’s Sevens Staff: Mike Friday (Head Coach), Chris Brown (Assistant Coach), Brian Green (Physio), Paul Goulding (Team Analyst), Sarah Sall (Team Manager)
Tonga: 1 Fe’aomaeata Kalu 2 Kitione Lave 3 Lisiate Huihui 4 Lisiate Taione 5 Ofa Pongi 6 Peasipa Poimoi 7 Siaosi Nonu 8 Sioeli Vakatapu 9 Siope Pouhila 10 Tevita Alatini 11 Tino Pooi 12 Viliami Soakai 13 Viliami Iongi
Eagles 7s: Silicon Valley 7s Preview