CHULA VISTA, Calif. – The Men’s Eagles Sevens will depart for Glasgow Saturday for the eighth stop of the IRB HSBC Sevens World Series – Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens.
Head Coach Matt Hawkins has made two changes to the squad from Tokyo Sevens and Cathay Pacific HSBC Hong Kong Sevens last month, where the Eagles made the Cup Quarterfinals at each event. The same squad will continue on to London following the stop in Scotland for Marriott London Sevens May 10-11.
Madison Hughes has returned to Dartmouth University to continue his education. The Big Green fullback scored six tries and kicked 23 conversions at Wellington Sevens and the two most recent tournaments in Asia.
“Madison played well and we’re looking forward to having him back soon ahead of the Olympics,” Hawkins said.
Hughes’ shoes will be filled by Will Holder, who has three caps with the Men’s Eagles.
“Holder’s part of the World-Class Athlete Program and is someone we’re interested in seeing on this stage,” Hawkins said. “Holder’s shown it with the 15s, he has abilities and skills to compete at this level.”
Nu’u Punimata will replace Marcus Satavu, who traveled with the team to Tokyo and Hong Kong. Punimata played with the Eagles in the early stages of the 2013-14 Series before missing time with an injury follow USA Sevens.
The Eagles gained 24 points in Tokyo and Hong Kong, accounting for more than half of their 37 on the year, good for 13th in the Series standings. Carlin Isles and Folau Niua, both at Glasgow Warriors of the RaboDirect Pro12, will remain at the Scottish club.
“We’ve decided to stick with the guys that we’ve got,” Hawkins said.
“We had a couple more losses than we wanted [in Tokyo and Hong Kong], but I think we played some really good rugby and we started to turn the corner. Overall, as we’ve always talked about, we want to progress and continue to take steps forward.”
Scotland will not only host Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens May 3-4, but also play the Eagles in Pool D. Spain has lost all five of its matches against the Eagles, and will join Australia to complete Pool D.
The Eagles open Glasgow Sevens against Spain Saturday, May 3, at 8:04 A.M. ET.
Men’s Eagles Sevens | Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens/ Marriott London Sevens
Men’s Eagles Sevens | Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens
v Spain – Saturday, May 3 – 8:04 A.M. ET
v Scotland – Saturday, May 3 – 11:10 A.M. ET
v Australia – Saturday, May 3 – 1:55 P.M. ET
(From USA Rugby Press Release)