In Tokyo, for the second tournament in a row, the Eagles opened up with New Zealand, and for the second tournament in a row, they were trampled by the best team in the world. This time the score was 26-5.
The Eagles trailed by just 14 at halftime, having given up two tries. In Hong Kong, they were down 17-0 at intermission, conceding three tries in the opening half. In both matches, the USA gave up two tries in the second half. They lost 29-5 in Hong Kong.
New Zealand stretched the lead to 21 just over a minute into the second stanza when Bryce Heem dotted down, and USA got on the board about three minutes later, with Mike Palefau scoring. Shalom Suniula missed the conversion.
Kylem O’Donnell added one more for New Zealand after the final hooter.
The Eagles will regroup and attempt to knock off Australia at 12:57am ET Saturday. The last time out against Australia, in Las Vegas, the Eagles nearly upset the 7s Wallabies in the Bowl semifinals.
The third pool match for the Eagles is 3:35am ET versus Hong Kong.
USA Starting Lineup