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Eagle 7s - Photo: Courtesy USA Rugby

The Eagles finished the weekend with a 2 - 4 record, gaining 10 points in Brazil, moving them up to sixth place in the World Rugby World Sevens Series ranking.   On day two, they narrowly loss to New Zealand in the Cup Quarterfinal, defeated Spain to advance to the Plate Final, and fell to England in their last game of the weekend.  New Zealand maintained its undefeated record, edging out Australia to win the Cup.

During game one of day two, New Zealand’s Sarah Gross crossed the try line first as a result of a USA penalty.  The try was converted to give the Red Roses a 7 - 0 lead.  The Eagles charged back to answer, with Lauren Doyle dotting down five points to bring the score to 7 – 5.   New Zealand’s Charlotte Amopp-Scanian and Kayla McAlister each scored a try just before the close of the first half to increase their team’s lead to 21 - 5.   In true USA fashion, the Eagles opened the second half with much fight and determination and in the ninth minute, Jessica Javelet put down her first five of the match.  Soon after, USA’s Kristen Thomas found space and capitalized on it, scoring underneath the uprights.  The try was converted by Kathryn Johnson, cutting the deficit to 21 – 17.   The ball found its way into the hands of Thomas again with about a minute to go, but unfortunately she knocked it on in the try zone. 

Moments after, New Zealand’s Portia Woodman scored her first try of the match to solidify NZ’s victory, 28 – 17. 

The Eagles’ second match against Sao Paulo hosts Brazil opened with a try by Victoria Folayan in the third minute.  Johnson converted to give the Eagles a 7 – 0 lead.    Brazil demonstrated very strong defense by holding the Eagles to seven points in the first half.  In the second half, Thomas and Doyle added to the US lead with a try each, bringing the final score to 19 – 0 and securing a spot for the squad in the Plate Final.

In their final match, the Eagles held England to only seven points in the first half.  After USA Captain Kelly Griffin was sent off for a yellow card, England capitalized on the overload with a try from Rachel Bufford just after the horn sounded to end the half.   Three minutes elapsed into the second half before Flaying found her way into the try zone, bringing the score to 7 – 5.   With very little time remaining, USA’s Johnson was sent to the sin bin and England capitalized, once again, with a try by Danielle Waterman to solidify the win and take home the Plate. 

The next stop on the Women’s Sevens World Series is Atlanta 7s March 14-15. 

2014 – 2015 World Rugby WSWS Standings:

1. New Zealand – 40 points

2. Australia – 36 points

3.  Canada – 32 points

4.  France – 28 points

5. England – 24 points

6. USA – 18 points

7. Russia – 14 points

8. Fiji – 14 points

9. Brazil – 10 points

10.  Spain – 5 points

11. South Africa – 4 points

12. China – 3 points