Wednesday, February 5, 2014

More Action Shots and the Rugby Mag Live Blog

Rugby Magazine put up some galleries from our Elite team games. Check out the Stars in action against Atlantis here as well as the Maple Leafs vs Aptoella (in their pool play match-up that was repeated in the stadium final!) and more. The Open division gallery is here for perusal too with Stars v BYU Too! featured as well as some shots of the Elite scrimmage vs Japan - note the Stars reversed our jerseys to the white side to avoid confusion vs Japan.

The first night of action in the stadium was a thrilling experience for many of our Stars who had never seen 7s of such a caliber before. The atmosphere differed from Saturday and Sunday's sold out crowds with fancy dress as our Open and Elite both had games earlier in the day. The Elite side played early Saturday morning as well so quite a few of us left after the 2nd Canada match up - it was hard to give up our first row seats though!

Here's the live blog recap from Rugby Magazine:

USA 7s Day One Live Blog
Tournaments - USA Sevens Tournament

OK so we're underway at the 2014 USA 7s in Las Vegas.

And the first two teams to come out are Life University and Life University. OK, joke. Both South Africa and Wales come out wearing neon green mixed with some forest green bits. A wonder the ref can tell them apart. A wonder the coaches can ...

The clue is, South Africa has gold trim on their collar, and they scored the first three tries.

This is a picture from my phone, so not the best quality but I wanted you to see the shirts.

Same jerseys
Dobson Images.
Well that was humbling. South Africa destroy Wales in the battle of the wearin' o' the green. Now what the early arrivers are here for, Kenya, dressed like Arsenal, and an injury-hit Canada team, who look like Manchester United.
We open, then, with a classic soccer cross kick from Nanyak Dala to set up a beautiful Canada try.
Ian Muir photo
Ian Muir photo

Canada scored a few more and seemed on top of everything. But Billy Odhiamo rambled in for Kenya to make it 17-15 with just the kick to come. Kick didn't come ... Canada wins for their many, many fans.

So next up is New Zealand against Australia.

Both have got to feel hard-done by that they are in such a tough pool. Gordon Tietjens revealed Wednesday night that he has been battling nasty injuries in his team. So no Tomasi Cama ... and still 31-7. So tough start for the Aussies.

One of the things I love about rugby. Scotland is losing 17-0. Fiji has an attack down the sideline, and the Scots do everything they could to stop another try? Sure it might matter in points difference, but it's about not giving up and it's about pride.
Ian Muir photo
Ian Muir photo

So it's like a home gamer for Samoa as they run on and as usual they do not disappoint. But England bounces back to make it 17-15 at halftime.

And now we have the first appearance of ... the Rug-Bee. Yes it s a rugby ball mascot that kind of (and I stress kind of) looks like a bee. I thought he had really bushy eyebrows but it turns out those are antennae. 2nd half starts as the Rugby-Bee lumbers off the field. Pick up the pace Bee!

Anyway, 19-17 for England with time winding down. The massive Samoa-supprting crowd gives on more surge, and wouldn't you know it ... they score in the corner. Awesome.

USA v Argentina coming up at 6:12PM local time. This would be a clash of two some-time co-workers, as USA Coach Matt Hawkins and Argentina Coach Santiago Gonez Cora both worked for Serevi.

Danny Barrett gets his first start. The lineup is Barrett, Thompson, Durutalo, Edwards, Test, Niua, and Haitsuka as the scrumhalf. Looks like Zack Test is probably in at center.

Portugal beats Uruguay. Actually Uruguay looks pretty good ... smoother than usual.

Carlin Isles happy after his try. Ian Muir photo.
Carlin Isles happy after his try. Ian Muir photo.
Now it's USA vs.  a bunch of creamsicles. Bright orange and white jerseys for Argentina. Who's idea was that?Starts very well for USA. They are offloading from the ground and hitting gaps. Keep the ball for a long time and then Danny Barrett gets a try on his debut.

Looking for more of the same, USA give up the ball at a ruck and somehow can't stop Argentina going all the way.

Eagles almost score under the posts, but pass adjudged forward. I am sure it was.

So it ended badly ... sorry was away getting interviews. Isles scored, but a knock on gave Argentina the last laugh.

Isles was upset. Zack Test looked REALLY upset. But they have to pick themselves up and get ready for Spain.

Have a look at what Matt Hawkins says here.

There's a guy from The Voice singing (Matthew Schuler) ... does a good National Anthem ...

Canada comes out after their big win to face South Africa and ... get pummeled. Great fan support though.

This guy doesn't look happy. Ian Muir photo.
This guy doesn't look happy. Ian Muir photo.

Funniest moment of the evening has to be when they put the fan in a blindfold and make him or her find a prize of some sort by following the crowd noise.

This time it was a young woman in a Wonder Woman outfit. She couldn't discern between Yahh! meaning you're going the wrong way and Yaahh! meaning you're going the right way.

Poor thing tripped over a field sign as she tried to find the Rug-Bee. Yes, I am certain the Rug-Bee will be behind some more nefarious doings.

Such as ... Uruguay almost beating Samoa.

Yes, I said that right.

Uruguay led Samoa 12-5 with 5 minutes to go and had a shot at wining it. Samoa did not look sharp, but they are 2-0, so what do I know?

The other big late game was Fiji against Australia, wherein the Aussies gave up a try in the first 4.75 seconds,  but clawed back to make it 21-19. Then with no time left, Cameron Clark kicked a penalty from out on the left to win the game 22-21.


So with a few games to go, it's South Africa, New Zealand, Samoa all at 2-0, with France, Portugal, and Argentina still hoping to be the same.

Well that didn't last long for Portugal. 1-0 and they run into an England buzzsaw. 54-0.

That takes some doing.

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