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Seattle claimed the inaugural Elite City 7s title Saturday at Houston Sports Park, beating San Diego 22-14 in the back-and-forth final of the two-day tournament.
The win sees Seattle qualify to participate in the second World Club 7s tournament Aug. 16-17 at Twickenham Stadium in London. San Diego joins New York, plate winners at the first World Club 7s last year, as the second American team in the competition.
Featuring plenty of current and former 7s Eagles on their rosters, Seattle and San Diego came into the tournament heavy favorites. They were both relatively untested until the final, having piled up lopsided scores in their favor.
Seattle and San Diego traded tries in the opening half of the championship game, and a successful conversion gave San Diego the 7-5 halftime lead. Seattle’s Tim Stanfill went over first and San Diego’s Pat Blair next. Blair and Stanfill were teammates at Central Washington University.
The two heavyweights swapped blows at the onset of the second half, too. Seattle’s Mike Nelson scored an unconverted try to regain the lead, 10-7, and Marcus Satavu responded immediately to put San Diego back on top 14-10.
With the second half winding down, Mike Palefau scored to push Seattle ahead 15-14, and Rocco Mauer put the nail in the coffin with a long-range converted try not long after, which gave Seattle a two-score lead with not enough time on the clock for San Diego to come back.
Many of the Seattle players will now turn their attention to the Seattle-OPSB 7s season in the hopes of defending the 2013 club 7s national title just a couple of weeks before heading over the pond to play at Twickenham. The Waratahs (Australia), Auckland Blues (New Zealand), Blue Bulls (South Africa), Western Province (South Africa), Buenos Aires (Argentina) and New York are the other teams confirmed for the competition.
|IME (CT)||MATCH #||TEAM||TEAM|
|6-Jun||5:00 PM||1||Seattle||33-0||Salt Lake City|
|6-Jun||6:20 PM||5||San Francisco||33-21||Houston|
|6-Jun||6:40 PM||6||San Diego||31-5||Washington D.C.|
|6-Jun||7:20 PM||7||Salt Lake City||0-36||Boston|
|6-Jun||8:40 PM||11||Houston||12-24||Washington D.C.|
|6-Jun||9:00 PM||12||San Francisco||0-26||San Diego|
|7-Jun||9:00 AM||13||Chicago||0-24||Washington D.C.|
|7-Jun||9:20 AM||14||Columbus||14-17||Salt Lake City|
|7-Jun||10:00 AM||16||San Francisco||12-14||Dallas|
|7-Jun||11:00 AM||17||San Diego||36-5||Washington D.C.|
|7-Jun||11:20 AM||18||Philadelphia||12-7||Salt Lake City|
|7-Jun||12:40 PM||22||San Francisco||34-7||Houston|
|7-Jun||1:40 PM||23||San Diego||27-14||Philadelphia|
|7-Jun||2:20 PM||25||Washington D.C.||v||Salt Lake City|
|7-Jun||4:00 PM||28||San Diego||14-22||Seattle|