USA Rugby Release
The USA Men’s 7s National Team will begin a new season with a full slate of tournaments starting with two weekends in Dubai from November 26-27 and December 3-4. Matches are streamed LIVE on NBC’s family of networks with schedules and updates here and on @USARugby social media channels.
- Utah Warriors’ Logan Tago and USA Under-23 Lucas Lacamp could make their senior national team debut
- Carlin Isles, Folau Niua, Stephen Tomasin and Perry Baker return after last competing at the Tokyo Olympics
- Folau Niua will earn his 70th cap in the World Series while Baker and Martin Iosefo are quickly approaching their 50th tournaments
- Gavan D’Amore is selected following strong performances in Canada last month
Comments from Head Coach Mike Friday
“We are all excited that the World Series is returning to its highly competitive self with more of the core nations able to travel to play in Dubai. I expect this pairing to be highly competitive — full of possibilities and opportunities for our emerging players.
“Overall, there is a real sense of excitement for this new season. We have some of our stalwarts returning after much needed rest and recovery post Olympics, along with a number of developing players who relish the opportunity to step up. We also have a number of players on the road to recovery and expect to be back in contention come the new year.
“Additionally, we are excited for the two debutants in Logan and Lucas, both possessing real X factor with Logan and his strength and power and Lucas with his acceleration and elusiveness. There are a number of up and coming players who are doing extremely well, adding real competition and positive energy to the group, in what is shaping up to be a very exciting and highly unpredictable season. That’s the nature of sevens and we cannot wait to get to the desert.”
2021 World Series Recap
The men’s 2021 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series was held in a modified format with only two tournaments in Vancouver and Edmonton in September. Seven new players made their debut as the USA finished 5th overall, just two points behind Canada in the Top 4.
Vancouver was a brutal reminder of how small mistakes make a big impact on the global circuit. The USA men went 5-1 overall with an unbeaten run in group play that saw wins over Spain, Germany and Canada. An incredibly tight Quarterfinal with Kenya knocked the U.S. out of medal contention but spurred enough energy to claim two more wins over Hong Kong and Canada for fifth-place.
Edmonton delivered a series of highs and lows as the U.S. went unbeaten in group play once again — defeating Spain, Chile and Kenya — before falling to Great Britain by 2 points in the Quarterfinals. Heartbroken by another close loss, the USA came back to shutout Ireland only to fall against Germany in sudden death with injuries to Adam Channel and Malacchi Esdale.
While both Canada legs had their harsh realities, the group had a strong overall record of 9-3 for both weekends. Considering the group introduced seven youngsters to the World Series environment, it can easily be said that the future of USA Sevens has a strong trajectory.
What’s ahead in 2022
Dubai marks the opening round of the 2022 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series which, for the first time since the pandemic, has returned for a full slate of events. A total of 10 men’s and 7 women’s events will be held from December 2021 to May 2022 with the season culminating in Rugby World Cup Sevens in Cape Town, South Africa.
While the recent Tokyo Olympics gave teams a platform to perform at the highest possible level, the upcoming World Cup delivers a similar landscape for new talent; almost as a bridge between the World Series and Olympic Games. Because rugby sevens has a uniquely unforgiving nature, using the World Cup as a stepping stone allows young players to be challenged in different ways; also forcing experienced seniors to evolve as leaders across varying degrees of pressure.
USA Men’s Sevens Roster
1. Carlin Isles, Wing, 57
2. Logan Tago*, Forward, Debut
3. Gavan D’Amore, Forward, 2
4. Matai Leuta, Forward, 42
5. Joe Schroeder, Forward, 14
6. Kevon Williams (Captain), Halfback/Wing, 29
7. Folau Niua, Halfback/Flyhalf, 69
8. Marcus Tupuola, Flyhalf/Center/Wing, 9
9. Stephen Tomasin, Utility, 37
10. Naima Fuala’au, Halfback/Flyhalf, 10
11. Perry Baker, Wing, 47
12. Martin Iosefo, Center/Prop, 48
13. Lucas Lacamp*, Flyhalf/Center, Debut
USA Men’s Sevens Traveling Staff
Head Coach | Mike Friday
Strength & Conditioning | Josh Schnell
Performance Analyst | Dave Gardner
Athletic Trainer | Bobby Gragston
Team Manager | Scott Novack
USA Men’s Sevens Schedule
Friday, November 26
vs Kenya | 1:16 AM ET
vs Spain | 5:08 AM ET
vs Argentina | 8:24 AM ET
Saturday, November 27
Knockouts begin as early as 1:28 AM ET
*Broadcast will be confirmed in the coming week on NBC’s family of networks.