CHULA VISTA, Calif. – Women’s Eagles Sevens Head Coach Ric Suggitt announced the travel squad for the two upcoming rounds of the 2013-14 IRB Women’s Sevens World Series at Fifth Third Bank Stadium at Kennesaw State University and Arena Barueri in Sao Paulo, Brazil, respectively.
The Eagles will head to Georgia Sunday, Feb. 9, for the second leg of the Series – Atlanta 7s – with veterans Christy Ringgenberg and Irene Gardner back in the squad.
“Christy and Irene were obviously a big part of the team at the [Rugby World Cup Sevens],” Suggitt said. “They’re both non-resident athletes, but they’re capable of staying disciplined at home and making sure they are fit. We purposefully left them out of [Emirates Dubai Rugby Sevens] to give our younger players, our newer players, a really good, early look at what the level of competition was going to be like, because we don’t have enough competition here to actually simulate it.”
Jessica Javelet is the only other selection not involved in Dubai, while Lorrie Clifford, Liz Sowers and Kathryn Johnson will serve as non-traveling reserves after putting in a shift in Dubai.
Canada’s women’s sevens team stayed with the Eagles for nearly two weeks earlier this month to train at the first-rate facilities at the Olympic Training Center and scrimmage the Eagles. The two North American rivals are in Pool A at Atlanta 7s with Australia and China.
“Canada’s had our number for the last three or four years,” Suggitt said. “Having them come down was beneficial for both teams. For us, we got more confidence by knowing them a little better, by being around them a lot more.”
The Eagles did not start the Series on the same track as their third-place finish at the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens in Russia. At Emirates Dubai Rugby Sevens, the Eagles opened pool play with a 12-12 draw against Ireland, which gained core status for the 2013-14 Series by reaching the Cup Quarterfinals in Moscow. A 24-19 defeat of Fiji preceded a 31-0 loss to New Zealand to round out pool play in Dubai.
A 36-0 shutout defeat at the hands of Russia in the Cup Quarterfinal placed the Eagles in the Plate Semifinal, where England awaited to deal the Eagles another loss to set up a Seventh-Place match with Brazil.
Though the Eagles finished seventh with a 26-24 win, they are not where Suggitt hoped they would be after a successful summer.
“I’d like to finish in the top four of every tournament,” he said. “If we’re in the top four we’re only one game from the Cup Final.”
Hear Suggitt discuss the improvements needed after a seventh-place finish in Dubai:
Victoria Folayan and Rebekah Siebach lead the Eagles with three tries apiece after one tournament, while Megan Bonny, Kelly Griffin, and Jillion Potter follow with two tries each.
Following Atlanta 7s, the Eagles will travel to Sao Paulo for Brazil’s Series leg Feb. 21-22. The pools and match schedule for the tournament will be announced after the conclusion of Atlanta 7s.
Women's Eagles Sevens | Atlanta 7s
1. Deven Owsiany
2. Kelly Griffin
3. Jillion Potter
4. Rebekah Siebach
5. Christy Ringgenberg
6. Lauren Doyle
7. Victoria Folayan
8. Amelia Villines
9. Irene Gardner
10. Dana Meschisi
11. Megan Bonny
12. Jessica Javelet
Women's Eagles Sevens | Non-Traveling Reserves
Women's Eagles Sevens | Atlanta 7s
v Canada - Saturday, Feb. 15 - 2:06 P.M. ET
v Australia - Saturday, Feb. 15 - 4:28 P.M. ET
v China - Saturday, Feb. 15 - 7:12 P.M. ET