The USA Men’s Eagles Sevens traveled to Vancouver for the sixth round of an Olympic qualifying season at HSBC Canada Sevens Mar 9-10. The team enters the Canada Sevens in first-place after winning the USA Sevens Cup Final for the second consecutive year.
The USA have earned Gold after four consecutive silvers to open the season. At the end of the HSBC Sevens Series, the Top 4 teams will automatically qualify for the Olympics in Japan in 2020. All matches will be streamed live on watch.espnplus.com.
The Eagles Sevens will top Pool A along with 14th ranked Wales, 16th place Chile, and 5th ranked South Africa.
Winning the USA Sevens was not without cost, with Danny Barret sustaining a minor thumb fracture. Joe Schroeder will take his place after helping lead the Men’s Falcons to their own title victory at the Las Vegas Invitational last weekend. Last year at Las Vegas, Schroeder sustained a season-ending injury.
The team played some of its best rugby of the year in Las Vegas in the knockouts and Carlin Isles, Martin Iosefo, Ben Pinkelman, and Stephen Tomasin were named to the Dream Team.
Carlin Isles scored the match winning try against New Zealand and leads the Series with 26 tries. Captain Madison Hughes is the points scored leader with 166, which includes tries and conversions.
Head Coach Mike Friday Comments
On the team spirit after winning a Gold medal…
“We’re back in San Diego recovering and resetting for Vancouver. The boys are comfortable and In good spirits, getting to sleep in their own beds for most of the week before leaving Thursday for another huge challenge. We all know that we once again must be prepared to work so hard. We are hungry as a group to keep moving forward — improving individually and as a team — with no illusion as to how tough a task it will be this weekend.”
On the competition in pool play…
“Very tough pool against a physical Chile team who got better and better as they got comfortable with the pace in Las Vegas. They turned heads with their game against South Africa in getting a draw in the pool stages. Wales will be hurting from last weekend and are a talented group of players who are very capable of competing. South Africa are the ultimate competitors and will be looking for retribution this weekend so we expect another hugely physical, fast and frantic game.”
USA, South Africa, Chile, & Wales Squads
USA: 1 Carlin Isles 2 Ben Pinkelman 3 Joe Schroeder 4 Matai Leuta 5 Brett Thompson 6 Kevon Williams 7 Folau Niua 8 Maceo Brown 9 Stephen Tomasin 10 Madison Hughes (C) 11 Marcue Tupuola 12 Martin Iosefo 13 Ben Broselle
South Africa: 1 Zain Davids 2 Phillip Snyman (C) 3 Impi Visser 4 Sakoyisa Makata 5 Werner Kok 6 Johannes Pretorius 7 Branco du Preez 8 Selvyn Davids 9 Justin Geduld 10 Stedman Gans 11 Siviwe Soyizwapi 12 Kurt-Lee Arendse 13 Muller du Plessis (Zain Davids and Kurt-Lee Arendse have been added to the squad and could be #1, 12, or 13)
Both Chile and Wales squads are based on the USA Sevens
Chile: 1 Felipe Brangier (C) 2 Pedro Verschae 3 Francisco Neira 4 Felipe Neira 5 Rodrigo Fernandez 6 Pablo Metuaze 7 Ignacio Silva 8 Pablo Byers 9 Francisco Metuaze 10 Francisco Urroz 11 Julio Blanc 13 Benjamin De Vidts
Wales: 1 Luke Treharne (C) 2 Cameron Lewis 3 Rio Dyer 4 Ben Cambriani 5 Owen Jenkins 6 Daf Smith 7 Ethan Davies 8 Cai Devine 9 Afon Bagshaw 10 George Gasson 11 Tom Rogers 12 Ben Roach 13 Joe Goodchild
Men’s Eagles Sevens Staff
Head Coach Mike Friday
Assistant Coach Anthony Roques
Strength & Conditioning Coach Jon Hood
Athletic Trainer Brian Green
Team Manager Scott Novack
HSBC USA Sevens Schedule
Pool A Broadcast LIVE on ESPN +
vs Wales Sat, Mar 9 – 2:45 PM ET
vs Chile Sat, Mar 9 – 6:14 PM ET
vs South Africa Sat, Mar 9 – 9:46 PM ET
*Knockout rounds for Pool A begin as early as Mar 10 at 12:30 PM ET.