The USA 7s rugby tournament has announced its official hotels for the February, 2012 event.
Planet Hollywood has signed on as the official team hotel, while Caesar’s Palace, Paris Las Vegas, Bally’s and the Flamingo are all offering special deals for fans.
The USA 7s tournament will be held February 10-12 at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas. In addition, the satellite tournament, the Las Vegas Invitational, will welcome over 200 teams to the city February 9-11.
Fans can come play at the LVI, or watch both the LVI and the USA 7s.
The hotel packages start at $35/night at the Flamingo, with different hotels offering different deals.
Book your room now and save. If you buy tickets before Jan. 2 you save upto 33%.
The United States opened pool play in South Africa with its fourth-straight pool loss, falling 26-7 to England.
England's James Rodwell opened scoring in the second minute with a try which Marcus Watson converted. Within minutes the Eagles rebutted with seven points via a a good wrap-around pass by Matt Hawkins and a try scored by Zach Test, converted by Shalom Suniula two minutes before halftime. The Eagles had two more opportunities near England’s try line which never materialized, leaving them tied 7-7 at halftime.
Watson opened the second half with a soft try, which converted gave England 14-7 lead, and a further try by Mat Turner off of a chip kick extended the advantage to 19-7. Nick Royle then intercepted a pass and scored under the poles to make the score 26-7.
On the final hooter, USA, from their own 22-meter line, spread the ball to Test, who advanced to England’s 22-meter iine but was finally tackled by Turner, ending any Eagle threat.
The USA showed improvement in their skills and good support lines, as well as shifting defense. A few basic errors, mainly knock forwards could have resulted in a much closer score.
USA Tries: Test Cons: Niua Starting lineup: Bokhoven, Palefau, Suniula, Test, Hawkins, Edwards, Niua
The USA were just edged 14-12 by a strong Samoa team in the final round of pool play at the Nelson Mandela Bay 7s in Port Elizabeth, South Africa Friday.
Samoa scored the opening try from the kickoff, and that proved the difference.
The ball bounced around off hands and heads and ended up in Samoa hands. Samoa pressed into the 22, and worked left then right, until Afa Aiono got the ball on the wing and he went through a poor Mark Bokhoven tackle attempt to score and give Samoa a 7-0 lead.
Try number two came off a penalty. Mike Palefau was called for holding on, rightly, and Samoa quickly exploited the space available to score and make it 14-0.
And it seemed like it would be 21-0 soon as Matt Hawkins stepped on the sideline as he tried to gather in the restart. But some good defense from Bokhoven, who tackled and poached right at the tryline, got the ball in USA hands. The Eagles then attacked from their own tryline. Bokhoven made the first big break and then fed Nick Edwards, who went into contact but kept going forward. A series of phases got the USA a little closer, and then Edwards cut back through traffic to score under the posts.
That was a significant turnaround for the USA, and Shalom Suniula’s conversion made it 14-7. Suniula was in the play again moments later. With the hooter gone in the first half, Suniula was the only defender between Samoa and another tryline. As he raced to the corner to stop the Samoan runner, he got that just was his opponent kicked ahead. It was a gutsy play by the USA captain, and saved a try.
USA Head Coach made the substitutions at halftime. Miles Craigwell came in for Edwards, and seconds into the half Andrew Durutalo went in for Bokhoven. Durutalo and Craigwell were heavily involved in the next series, which ended up with Hawkins shoving his way through defenders to score in the corner. Suniula’s conversion attempt from the touchline hit the post, and Samoa led 14-12 with two minutes to go.
Good pressure from the restart by the USA forced a knock-on and a scrum for the Eagles about 26 meters out. But too many bodies in the ruck from Samoa forced a penalty – although it could just as easily have been against Samoa for diving over – and Samoa killed time long enough to win.
It was a very good effort by the USA, but they were stung by poor defense early on.
Notes: The USA finished pool play 1-2, and not that far from 2-1. They will likely return to the Bowl Round, where they face Zimbabwe, but as of this writing, if Argentina beat England the Eagles could end up 2nd or 4th. Also noteworthy, Folau Niua did not start against Samoa, and did not come on as a sub. Peter Tiberio and Shalom Suniula shared the scrumhalf/flyhalf duties.
When Argentina's Gonzalo Gutierrez Taboada scored his side's second try 26 seconds into the second half against the USA, it appeared the Eagles were going to lose momentum from another promising first half. In the Eagles' first pool play match during the George 7s, the USA played England to a 7-all tie at half, then allowed three unanswered tries in the second stanza for a 26-7 loss.
But that wasn't the case in the Eagles' second match. Although Argentina took a 7-0 lead afer less than a minute, Mike Palefau skirted across the tryline a minute and a half later. Folau Niua's conversion produced a 7-all tie heading into the break.
At halftime, the USA found itself in an indentical situation as their previous match. In order to have a fighting chance, the Eagles needed to minimize unforced errors and starve Argentina of the ball.
But Argentina had plans of their own. Taboada's try and conversion reinstated the Pumas' seven-point lead, and there the scoreline stood for the next three minutes. It wasn't until Matt Hawkins scored in the fourth minute, and Shalom Suniula hit the conversion, that the Eagles evened up at 14.
The sides battered each other for one more scoring opportunity, and with four seconds left in regulation, Mark Bokhoven put his side up with the final try, which Suniula converted for the 21-14 win.
It was a fantastic come-from-behind victory that helped salve the wounds of the second-half slip against England. The Eagles now have their most difficult match of the day awaiting them - Samoa, which defeated England 24-14 and Argentina 17-5 earlier in the day.
Game 1 England 26 Tries: Rodwell, Watson, Turner, Royle Conversions: Watson 2, Lewis-Pratt
USA 7 Tries: Test Conversion: Niua
Game 2 USA 21 Tries: Palefau, Hawkins, Bokhoven Conversions: Niua, Suniula 2
Argentina 14 Tries: Migliore, Taboada Conversions: Taboada 2
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