By Jerrod Beckstrom
TOKYO — Seven was the magical number for the Eagles this weekend in the Tokyo Sevens. It was the seventh stop on the HSBC Sevens World Series and the USA Men’s Eagle Sevens team claimed seven crucial Series points. That means the USA leapfrogs Scotland, Canada, and Kenya (only just) to sit at no. 10 in the world.
The Eagles went 3-3 in Tokyo with losses coming from quality opponents: Cup semifinalists and Series leaders New Zealand; Tokyo Sevens champions Australia; and the team that snuck by the USA 17-12 in the Bowl Final, France.
Three wins against Hong Kong, Kenya, and Portugal gives new USA Head Coach Alexander Magleby a platform to build on in April as the USA prepares for the Glasgow (May 5-6, 2012) and London Sevens (May 12-13, 2012).
Overall the team looked confident and opportunistic in Japan, the result of which was exciting attacking rugby. Rocco Mauer, who was playing college rugby for Bowling Green State just last year, exploded onto the scene in Tokyo scoring four tries, putting him among the elite scorers in the tournament.
Results: Pool B
Australia 15 USA O; USA 5 New Zealand 26; USA 21 Hong Kong 19.
Bowl Quarterfinal: USA 12 Kenya 7; Bowl Semifinal USA 20 Portugal 10; Bowl Final: France 17 USA 12.