Written by Evan Oscherwitz
The United States Open Men’s Rugby sevens squad took home the bronze medal Wednesday in Netanya, scoring two blowout wins over Great Britain. The Americans erased any memory of their 0-2 start to the tournament, beating the Brits 24-0 in the final game of the round robin before asserting themselves once again with a 34-5 pounding in the bronze medal match.
“We weren’t happy with yesterday,” U.S. flanker Devin Ibañez said. “Two losses doesn’t define who we are. It doesn’t define what we’re here to do. We’re here to build every single day and we just took this as another opportunity to build. I think you saw it in the result.”
The Americans jumped out to early leads in both games and got steady contributions from up and down their lineup. They held a steady advantage in time of possession and took advantage of poor tackling by Great Britain on several of their tries, including a long run by Chavkin to seal the first game.
“I think we all came with a very clear idea of what we wanted to accomplish,” Ibañez said. “Namely, using our skills to stretch the field and work together to make it as easy as possible on ourselves.”
The United States will take a four day-long rest before opening up the 15s tournament on Jul. 17 in a rematch against the Brits.