Here's what happened to USA players overseas this weekend:
Saracens (Chris Wyles, Hayden Smith) v. Biarritz (Taku Ngwenya).
Thanks to five Owen Farrell penalties, Saracens won 20-16. Wyles and Ngwenya played on the wing against each other, and neither scored.
Hayden Smith didn’t play.
With the victory, Saracens is 4-1 in Pool 5 of the Heineken Cup. They haven’t guaranteed a place in the Quarterfinals, but it would be a miracle if they didn’t win the pool.
Biarritz, at 2-3, has an outside chance of making the Quarterfinals.
They play 2-3 Ospreys next week.
Northampton Saints (Samu Manoa) v. Scarlets
Samu Manoa started at lock for the Saints, who won 29-17. The victory was a must-win for Northampton, which moved to 2-3 in Pool 1 and could still eke out a wild card spot in the Quarterfinals.
The Saints play pool leaders Munster next week.
Bath (Chris Biller) v. Montpellier (Seta Tuilevuka)
Biller is sidelined as Bath tries to balance its heavy contingent of foreign players, and Tuilevuka has still not cracked the lineup after coming back from injury. Neither played in Montpellier’s 24-22 victory. Both teams are out of contention for a place in the Quarterfinals.
Amlin Challenge Cup
Agen (Kevin Swiryn) v. Brive
Brive won easily and Swiryn did not play. Agen dropped to 1-4 in Pool 5.
Stade Francais (Scott LaValla) v. Bucharest
LaValla started at blindside flanker as the Paris club improved to 5-0 and clinched a playoff spot. They take on 4-1 Worcester next week.
London Welsh (Shawn Pittman) v. Bristol
Shawn Pittman, nursing a broken nose, did not play as Welsh won 23-17.
Leeds (Mike MacDonald, Robbie Shaw) v. Plymouth Albion
Shaw started at scrumhalf while MacDonald is sidelined at least 10 weeks with a knee injury. Stung by two yellow cards, Leeds lost 25-20.
Cornish Pirates (Andrew Suniula) v. Esher
Suniula has not been in the lineup for some time. The Pirates won 36-30 in a thriller.
All three teams are in with a shot in the league. London Welsh is 11-5-2 and 3rd. The Pirates stay at 4th, while Leeds drops from 5th to 6th.
French Pro D2
Perigueux (Inaki Basauri) v. Auch
Working to stave off relegation, Perigueux lost 25-22 to Auch. Basauri slotted in at lock for his club as they dropped to 2-14.
Video is here. Basauri is #4 in blue.
Other players overseas:
Todd Clever came on with about 21 minutes to go at No. 8 for Suntory in their 43-26 defeat of Kintetsu in the Japan Top League. Suntory remains in first place in the competition. Clever's contract is about to run out at Suntory and he is reportedly looking for a new club, although it's not clear whether that will be in Japan, or somewhere else.
Jason Law and Derek Asbun are at Oxford University, which, after basking in the glow of a Varsity match victory in December, will resume play January 25 against the RAF.
Will Magie has been the starting flyhalf for Leeds University. The former High School All American captain had surgery on his back during the fall, after helping Leeds to a 4-0 start. He is expected back on the field this month.
Taylor Mokate is with the Wellington Football Club in Wellington, NZ, getting ready for a new season.
Mate Moeakiola is playing with Bobigny 93 in the French Federale 1 (their 3rd division). They beat Orelans 31-0.