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Head coach Chris Brown has made two changes from the silver-medal finish in Glendale for the second tournament of the season in Dubai next week. The Eagles are paired with Australia, England and China in Pool B.

Veteran Joanne Fa’avesi and World Series debutant Ashlee Byrge replace Lauren Thunen and Tia Blythe, who helped the Eagles finish second in Colorado. Fa’avesi last appeared for the Eagles during the July World Cup. Byrge, formerly of Davenport and Central Washington, is a resident in Chula Vista as part of the Army’s World Class Athlete Program.  

"Ashlee is an individual that's been fighting for an opportunity for a while. Her consistency of application over the past month alongside her enhancement in game understanding has seen her advance into the Dubai squad,” said Brown.

“When it comes to consistency of training intent we can always count on Ashlee being one of the examples to follow. This is an important trait when we look at the culture our group is trying to enhance and embed as a new norm."

The Eagles’ reward for doing so well in Glendale is an incredibly tough group. In Colorado, they lost to England and narrowly edged China in pool play before upsetting Australia in the knockouts. None of those games are guaranteed wins, and the USA might well be considered underdogs in two of them.

"We have a challenging pool again. Australia are Olympic Champions for valid reasons and are a classy outfit especially with core players returning from injury,” said Brown.

“England have depth coming out its ears through the backing of their professional league and age group system, and China have a number of players returning and are under the guidance of a very good coach in Chad Shepherd."

Women's Eagles Sevens Roster
All players are part of the Women's Sevens residency program.

1. Joanne Fa'avesi
2. Abby Gustaitis
3. Cheta Emba
4. Ilona Maher
5. Kristen Thomas

6. Ashlee Byrge*
7. Lauren Doyle (Co-Captain)
8. Alena Olsen
9. Alev Kelter
10. Nicole Heavirland (Co-Captain)
11. Naya Tapper
12. Stephanie Rovetti

*First HSBC World Sevens Series appearance.

Women's Eagles Sevens Staff
General Manager | Emilie Bydwell
Head Coach | Chris Brown
Performance Analyst | Dave Gardner
Athletic Trainer | Nicole Titmas
Team Manager | Liz Strohecker
Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens Schedule

Pool B | Broadcast info will be confirmed closer to date
vs China | Thurs, Nov. 29 - 4:06 AM ET
vs England | Thurs, Nov. 29 - 7:02 AM ET
vs Australia | Thurs, Nov. 29 - 9:59 AM ET