USA Eagles Grand Slam of the Americas Rugby Championship, FT 19-61 USA over Uruguay



Following the 2015 Rugby World Cup, World Rugby staged the first Americas Rugby Championship. This guaranteed the US and all member countries that fielded their national teams four additional Full Test Matches with the match against the Argentina XV being uncapped for both the US and Canada.  Immediately following the 2015 Rugby World Cup Mike Tolkin's contract was not renewed and John Mitchell was appointed head coach.  With little time to scout and assemble a team post Rugby World Cup John Mitchell led the Eagles to a 2-2-1 record.  In Mitchell's second ARC campaign in 2017 the Eagles would win the tournament on bonus points after drawing their final match against ARG XV. 

As has been the case with the majority of the matches for Eagles this 2018 tournament they scored early.  Tony Lamborn took it in so fast off a quick tap that ESPN was running replays of the penalty call not having switched back to the live angle.  '5:20 Lamborn put it near the posts going through multiple Teros setting up Magie for the conversion, USA went up 0-7.  At '7:40 near mid-field Shaun Davies flipped the ball out of a ruck to Mike Te'O, Te'O hit the gap at full bore, busting through the Uruguayan defensive line for a try.  Magie's kick was good putting the Eagles up 0-14.  Los Teros seemed to be running a blitz defense as they contended every ruck in the first half drawing in more forwards from the Eagles.  This style of play, along with a chippy attitude, helped Uruguay concede a lot of penalties to the Eagles.  Many have asked when the Eagles killer instincts would come-it was now, especially following the results against both Chile and Brazil where both teams hung around for a little bit.  The Eagles kept attacking and played excellent defense. 

The Eagles were running a variable attack, the Uruguayans a 4-4 pod attack.  With the physical centers that the Eagles brought to bear it truly negated that on defense.  Regaining possession, Shaun Davies showed his boot with a box kick which was collected by Wing Nate Augspurger, who then kicked a grubber which was collected Te'O offloaded to Paul Lasike and then offloaded to Hooker Dylan Fawsitt going in for the try at '21:40. Magie's conversion put the Eagles up 0-21. Mid-way through the second quarter Nate Augspurger, finding himself in space, gained ground before kicking it deep where the ball bounced high in the try-zone.  Contentious play between Hanco Germishuys and Santiago Arata, the Uruguayan Scrum-Half, led to a penalty try being awarded and Arata a sending off.

Up 0-28, scoring at a clip of a point almost every minute, the Eagles found the Try-Zone moments later as Augspurger dotted down a kick from Full-Back Dylan Audsley at '28:50 to go up 0-35 with Magie's conversion.  Hanco Germishuys scored as the driving maul off a line-out found it's way over the try-line.  Magie's conversion went wide.  0-40 at half-time. It was the Eagles' largest half-time lead over an opponent since defeating Barbados 91-0 [49-0 HT]  in 2006. 

Not done yet, the Eagles found the try-zone three more times with tries scored by Josh Whippy, Mike Te'O, and Psalm Wooching.  Los Teros did show some life scoring nineteen points.  However, it was to no avail as the Eagles pushed on to win their first Grand Slam of the Americas Rugby Championship with their second largest victory against Uruguay since their first meeting in 1989 (6-60). 

FT 19-61, the Eagles showed what they can be: a dominant side.  Can't wait to see this group of Eagles following the Inaugural Season of Major League Rugby.

Scoring

Uruguay

Tries: Arata, Cat, Mieres

Conversions: Herrera 2/3

Pens: 0

USA

Tries: Lamborn, Te'o (2), Fawsitt, Augspurger, Germishuys, Whippy, Wooching, Penalty Try

Conversions:  Magie: 6/7, Cima

Pens:0

~Aaron Castro