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Evan Lappen photo

Fiji opened the floodgates on Team USA in the final of Hamilton 7s Sunday, thrashing its way to a 38-0 victory. Jerry Tuwai set up two tries and scored two more, leading Fiji from the front. Despite the loss, the Eagles leave Hamilton ranked first in the world.

In the final, the Eagles won the opening restart and caught the first break, when Fiji was pinged in the breakdown for not releasing. Folau Niua kicked to touch, but Fiji stole the impending lineout, and Jerry Tuwai slipped through two tackles for the opening score. The conversion attempt was unsuccessful.

Tuwai assisted on the next try, stepping around two Eagles before setting up Waisea Nacuqu for the score. The kick was again missed, leaving the USA down 10-0. Aminiasi Tuimamba added a third in short order, following a turnover at the breakdown. The conversion made it 17-0 at halftime.

The onslaught commenced in the second half, with Alosio Naduva forcing a penalty against Carlin Isles for holding onto the ball in the tackle. Tuwai deked his way through the American line once again off the penalty, feeding Naduva for the score.

Tuwai dotted down his second try to cap off a masterful performance. The Eagles had made inroads into the attacking end for the first time in the final minute, and Brett Thompson was stripped of the ball five meters short of the goal line. Tuwai scooped up the loose ball and raced 95 meters for the score. Naduva added one more at the death to flatter the scoreline even further.