TOKYO – The USA are bound for the Tokyo Sevens cup quarterfinals after a wild day one. Wales fell to the Eagles, Kenya beat them, and Scotland tied them. Now the USA faces New Zealand in the cup quarterfinals tonight (March 30) at 9:50 p.m. ET.
Kenya and the USA were locked in second position in the pool at four points apiece after the first two rounds, which led to a dramatic final round. The chips fell the Eagles' way after they tied Scotland (a 12-point USA victory would have guaranteed a spot in the cup quarters). Wales beat Kenya in the last pool game of the day, propelling the Eagles into the cup quarters.
Penalties haunted the Eagles and execution wasn't where it needed to be, according to USA Head Coach Alexander Magleby.
On the positive side, restarts were very good, tactical defense is improving, and the tackle rate is steadily rising. There were passages of attacking play against Kenya that were incredible, showing signs of promise for day two and beyond.
With the USA in the danger zone in terms of relegation, series points are at a premium. Their cup quarterfinal berth in Tokyo promises 10 elusive points, maybe more.
On day two Magleby is looking to minimize the penalties and finish tries with patience and smarts.
"Tomorrow we're going to have to finish. We certainly have the ability to. We just have to execute," said the coach.
Day One Box Scores:
Tries: Niua, Test
Scotland 12Tries: Fedo, Wier
Tries: Test, Isles
Kenya 21Tries: Ombachi, Adema, Ouma
Conversions: Adema (3)
Tries: Hawley, Edwards, Hawkins, Hume
Conversions: Suniula, Niua
Wales 22Tries: Webber, Allen (2), Thomas