The USA 7s team wrapped up the business portion of their sojourn to Seattle Wednesday with a four-period scrimmage against the Serevi Selects.
The scrimmage, held at Magnuson Park in Seattle, was well-attended by fans, and featured a close contest. The game itself was mostly touch, rather than full tackle. USA Head Coach Alex Magleby said he could not afford to risk injury with the 7s World Cup right around the corner. But the hitting seemed to increase over the course of the afternoon.
"It's always like that," said USA player and Seattle local Mike Palefau. "Everyone wants to hit so the touches get more physical as time goes on."
The Serevi Selects featured several very experienced internationals, including Ben Gollings, Emisi Vucago, and Waisale Serevi himself. Former Eagle Kevin Swiryn, sort-of out of retirement, also played.
"This was a good test for us; exactly what we needed," said Magleby.
The two teams traded tries before the USA team pulled away with two in a row in the third period, Serevi came back, punishing a couple of USA errors, but some excellent teamwork by the USA capped it off with tries for Carlin Isles and Andrew Durutalo. The score was irrelevant, said Magleby. This was all about getting competition.
"Some things we did well, and some things we were pretty bad at," said Zack Test of the USA team. "We will learn from those mistakes and fix them."
USA captain Matt Hawkins, recovering from knee surgery, worked out today but did not play. Jack Halalilo also rested, while Pila Taufa and Nate Augspurger, got some much-needed game time.