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USA Rugby has named the Falcons team set to play in Chile and Argentina laster this month. A handful of capped Eagles, including some training remotely on their own and some at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., are joined by some fresh faces from the academy and collegiate ranks.
“This is an important opportunity for some talented athletes to play their way into Coach Friday’s squad for the important 7s World Series tour ahead,” USA Rugby National Sevens Director Alex Magleby said. “Ben, Will, Pat, Pila, and Mikey are expected to have break-out performances. They’re each athletic and quality footballers; consistently doing their jobs this trip will be exciting to see.”
“The Tour will give all a real opportunity to put their hand up for the forthcoming roster to New Zealand (Wellington Sevens) and Vegas (USA Sevens)," added Friday, "and I am expecting the players to make it very difficult for me to pick the final roster as the boys will return straight from competition and straight into the High Performance Camp.”
Stephen Tomasin returns from a long injury layoff. He made his international debut on the 2013/2014 World Series before suffering an injury that would require surgery. He's accompanied by fellow capped Eagles Zach Pangelinan, Pat Blair, Will Holder and Mike Te'o. Holder Army's World Class Athlete Program. While several players are in the WCAP and training at the OTC, they've had a hard time getting selected regularly for the World Series. This tour should provide at least two of them valuable international experience.
Tomasin and Chris Turori are still in college, but based in San Diego, they've had plenty of time under the National Team umbrella. Kingsley McGowan of St. Mary's and Delaware's Glen Thommes, however, come in fresh out of the college game. With Delaware's team suspension, Thommes has played most recently with Schuylkill River.
“We’re looking forward to seeing how Glen continues to progress,” Magleby said. “He has methodically worked his way up the collegiate ranks, combining those efforts with quality performances in the men’s club sevens game in the summers, as well as continuing to execute with Atlantis under coach Chris Ryan in club-plus tournaments domestically and abroad. Colton is another with similar experiences via the Collegiate All-Americans and Life University.”
|Player||Club||High Performance Team|
|Pat Blair||Seattle Saracens||Serevi|
|Colton Cariaga||Life||Life ODA|
|Will Holder||Army||WCAP - Army|
|Ben Leatigaga||Army||WCAP - Army|
|Derek Lipscomb||Old Blue||Northeast ODA|
|Pila Taufa||At-Large||USOC - OTC|
|Mike Te'o||Belmont Shore||USOC - OTC|
|Glen Thommes||Schuylkill River||All Americans|
|Stephen Tomasin||San Diego State||USOC - OTC|
|Jack Tracy||Belmont Shore||Tiger|
|Chris Turori||OMBAC||USOC - OTC|