USA advances to Cup Semifinals.
Two teams with proud traditions of success at the USA Sevens, the bounce of the ball on the night is likely to decide the winner. Perry Baker stole the opening kick but his attempted offload to Madison Hughes went forward. The Eagles took the strike against the head and got into the Argentina twenty-two, but coughed it up. Fortunately for the United States, the turf monster ate up the Argentine ball carrier, allowing the defense to reform and prevent the imminent score. At the two minute mark, the reliable American defense forced a turnover through penalty. The Eagles kicked for touch, won the lineout, and worked it wide, a pass out to Perry Baker bounced off his chest and set up a try in the left corner for Nicolas Menendez of Argentina. Gaston Revol connected on the important conversion, putting the United States in a hole. A dynamic run by Danny Barrett looked like it might go for the distance, but led to a penalty. The Eagles got the ball back, but again failed to maintain possession for long. Barrett looked to be free with an interception try, but a highly unusual call from the touch judge brought it back for the offside call. Argentina kicked for touch, won the lineout and added a try through Matias Osadczuk as time expired. Revol’s conversion attempt landed true, for a 14–0 Argentina scoreline at the half.
After the disallowed try, the American focus seemed to melt away. Argentina added a third try in the first minute of the half, putting the United States three scores behind. Despite what looked to be a knock on of the restart by the Eagles, no call was made to stop them from taking possession. Maka Unufe then took the ball for a try under the post and Hughes notched the two-points after. Bautista Delguy tried to do for Argentina what Unufe had just done for the United States, but was pulled to touch before any damage was done. The Eagles won the lineout and Unufe found another seam for his second try of the half. And just like that, the Eagles were back in it. Hughes’s conversion cut it to five with just under three minutes left. As chants of USA! Rained down from the crowd, Argentina brought in the restart and won a penalty, silencing the American supporters. The Argentines kicked to set up a lineout just a meter inside the USA ten. The USA stole the lineout and got the ball again to Unufe who hit Baker for a try under the post at 1:25 remaining. The match tied, Hughes approached the kick like a golfer putting for a green jacket on the eighteenth at the Masters. Hughes nailed the conversion, setting up one more restart. Folau Niua’s restart came with twenty-three seconds left. Argentina took the kick and began the desperate fight. The hooter sounded and Argentina won a penalty for a high tackle. Probing the right touch line, Argentina ran out of space, but kept possession. Back and forth Argentina went, looking for an edge. The amazing Americans did it and held on for a penalty. Three years under Mike Friday, three years in the semifinals.
USA advances to cup semifinals after an INSANE comeback against Argentina. #USA7s Let's go!
Posted by USA Sevens Rugby on Saturday, March 4, 2017