Eagles continue on to Tokyo Sevens Bowl Final

TOKYO – The Men’s Eagles Sevens will face Australia in the Tokyo Sevens Bowl Final Sunday after beating Samoa, 22-5, in the Semifinal.

Carlin Isles scored two tries as the Eagles answered Samoa’s early score with four unanswered. The Final against Australia, triumphant in the same matchup in the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens Plate Final last weekend, kicks off at 3:35 a.m. ET.

The two teams traded spells of momentum in the opening minutes of the match. The Eagles kept their defensive shape, with Isles patrolling the wing and captain Madison Hughes controlling as sweeper.

A midfield lineout to the U.S. in the fifth minute was mistaken by Folau Niua, giving Samoa a quick tap. Taken quickly, Alefosio Tapili broke down the wing and offloaded in the tackle to Faalemiga Selesele for the try and 5-0 lead.

The Eagles won the ensuing restart and set up inside Samoa’s half. Hughes sent a grubber kick towards the touch line at the 10, where Isles kicked it forward and Hughes did the same before the captain picked it up for the try.

The newly-found, 7-5 lead was quickly extended with another restart win for the Eagles. Maka Unufe used his reach to knock it to his teammates and Bender received the ball on the wing. He got within five meters of the try line before being tackled and a strong clearance in the breakdown by Niua left the ball free for Isles to take in-goal.

The 12-5 lead seemed to be under threat in the 10th minute when Isles tackled a Samoan attacker just ahead of the corner of the try line. The two slid over the line and into touch with Isles keeping the ball from touching the grass in the try zone.

The Eagles kept possession well by not spreading themselves too thin while moving forward, and continuous support forced Samoa into taking consecutive penalties. The referee pulled out a yellow card for Tomasi Alosio to send the Samoan to the sin bin for most of the remaining two minutes.

Niua looked to take advantage with the extra player on the field and passed to Isles to extend the lead to 17-5 before Barrett took the ball from the restart into the try zone to bring the final score to 22-5.

Australia defeated Wales in the first Bowl Semifinal at Prince Chichibu Memorial Ground Sunday to set up the rematch with the Eagles in the Bowl Final. The match can be viewed on Universal Sports at 3:35 a.m. ET, with live match updates provided by @USARugby on Twitter.

Men’s Eagles Sevens | v. Samoa
1. Carlin Isles
2. Nic Edwards
3. Danny Barrett
4. Garrett Bender
5. Zack Test
6. Andrew Durutalo
7. Folau Niua
8. Maka Unufe
9. Nate Augspurger
10. Madison Hughes (C)
11. Perry Baker
12. Mataiyasi Leuta

Samoa | v. USA
1. Greg Lealofi
2. Alefosio Tapili
3. Faalemiga Selesele
4. Tofatuimoana Solia
5. Lafaele Vaa
6. Alatasi Tupou
7. Lolo Lui
8. Tom Iosefo
9. Siaosi Asofolau
10. Samoa Toloa
11. Tila Mealoi
12. Tomasi Alosio

Men’s Eagles Sevens | 22
Tries: Hughes, Isles (2), Barrett
Conversions: Hughes

Samoa | 5
Tries: Selesele
Conversions: N/A

Men’s Eagles Sevens | Tokyo Sevens
v Kenya – L 27-5
v Canada – W 22-14
v South Africa – L 24-15
Bowl QF v Portugal – W 39-0
Bowl SF v Samoa – W 22-5
Bowl Final v Australia – Sunday, April 5 – 3:35 a.m. ET