USA Summer Series: Who Didn't Get Picked By Eagles And Why

USA Summer Series: Who Didn't Get Picked By Eagles And Why

Sometimes it's just because you don't get picked.

May 12, 2018 by Alex Goff
Brendan Daly: Work Hard, Play Harder

The selection for the USA Men’s 15s team for June is always an interesting exercise because we find out how difficult, once again, it is to get overseas professionals released for international duty.

The World Rugby rules state that players have to be released during specific time frames in February, June, and November (plus World Cups), but that doesn’t always come to pass. The good news for Eagles fans is that all of the overseas pros are available. 

The interesting development is that not all are on the team for the USA's upcoming Summer Series, which includes tests against Russia in Denver on June 9 and Scotland in Houston on June 16, followed by a road trip to face Canada in Halifax on June 23.

Here’s a look at some of the new players, some of the players who didn’t get picked, and what’s going to happen from here.

Titi Lamositele and Greg Peterson are two well-regarded overseas pros. Both players are not on the roster, and the likely reason is… they’ve not been playing a whole lot. The old chestnut that a player being in a daily training environment, even if he’s not playing, is beneficial still holds. The reasoning is just that if a player is in a daily training environment and also playing it’s easier to track his development.

Peterson (a lock) and Lamositele (a prop) have similar profiles in that they take care of the tough stuff in tight and in the scrum but aren’t especially mobile. Regardless, many might think Lamositele’s ability to dominate a scrum is just what the Eagles need. Having said all of that, Eric Fry and Olive Kilifi have been playing rugby more regularly, and the same can be said of David Tameilau, Ben Landry, and Siaosi Mahoni.

Newish names: Callum Black is a prop for Ulster who qualifies through parentage. Paul Mullen, who is now playing with the Houston SaberCats, qualifies through an American grandparent.

Who's In


30 players announced for Men's Eagles June test series

CENTER: Dylan Audsley, San Diego Legion: Marcel Brache, Perth/Western Force (AUS); Bryce Campbell, Glendale Raptors; Paul Lasike, Utah Warriors

FLANKER: Hanco Germishuys, Austin Elite; John Quill, Glendale Raptors; Tony Lamborn, San Diego Legion; David Tameilau, Utah Warriors

FLYHALF: Ben Cima, San Diego Legion; Will Hooley, Bedford Blues (ENG); AJ MacGinty, Sale Sharks (ENG); Will Magie, Glendale Raptors 

FULLBACK: Blaine Scully, Cardiff Blues (WAL)

HOOKER: Dylan Fawsitt, Glendale Raptors; James Hilterbrand, Manly Marlins (AUS); Joe Taufete'e, Worcester Warriors (ENG)

LOCK: Nick Civetta, Newcastle Falcons (ENG); Ben Landry, Glendale Raptors; Samu Manoa, Toulon (FRA); Siaosi Mahoni, San Diego Legion

NO. 8: Cam Dolan, San Diego Legion

PROP: Chris Baumann, Leicester Tigers (ENG); Callum Black, Ulster Rugby (IRE); Olive Kilifi, Seattle Seawolves; Eric Fry, Vannes Rugby (FRA); Paul Mullen, Houston SaberCats

SCRUMHALF: Nate Augspurger, San Diego Legion; Shaun Davies, Glendale Raptors; Ruben de Haas, Free State Cheetahs (RSA)

WING: Ryan Matyas, San Diego Legion

Who's Out

They’re not really out. The big message here has to be that any player not picked today could be picked tomorrow, and you know players have been told to be ready if there’s an injury.

Kilepi Fifita (Glendale Raptors), Prop
Well regarded and very close to being picked.

Brendan Daly (SFGG), Lock
Still on the list, for sure. He’s got competition, that’s all.

Devereux Ferris (Life West), Scrumhalf
Still on the list but has competition.

Huluholo Moungaloa (Life West), Prop/Hooker
Still on the list but has competition.

Matt Jensen (Utah Warriors), Lock
Still on the list but has competition.

Angus MacLellan (Utah Warriors), Prop
Still on the list but has competition. Probably the next tighthead up.

Paddy Ryan (Austin Elite), Prop
Not sure where he stands, actually.

Chance Wenglewski (Lindenwood University), Prop
Here’s where an elite college player is now competing against players who are all training every day.

Psalm Wooching (Seattle Seawolves), Flanker
Nursing an injury. Being a pro in Italy next fall should be really good for him.

Andrew Durutalo (Ealing Trailfinders), Flanker
Word is he will play 15s for Ealing and 7s for the USA (if wanted), but that’s it.

Aladdin Schirmer (Seattle Seawolves), Flanker
Still on the radar.

JP Eloff (NOLA Gold), Flyhalf, Center, Fullback
He can play a lot of positions, which is probably one of the reasons he should be considered, and sometimes a reason why players get left off lists. What is he? Well, he’s all of those things. 

Tim Maupin (Olympic Club), Wing
Still worth considering.

Shalom Suniula (Seattle Seawolves), Scrumhalf, Flyhalf 

Still worth considering.

Anthony Salaber (San Diego Legion), Center
The next big thing. Has won everywhere he’s gone and has started well for the Legion. He will be in an Eagles jersey soon.

Alex Elkins, (Houston SaberCats), Wing
Still something of a raw talent. To juxtapose him with Maupin, Elkins is a player with not a lot of rugby behind him but is very athletic and working hard every day at it. Maupin is well steeped in the game (and a good athlete) but is working and playing for an amateur club. Put that all together you’ve got… Ryan Matyas.

Gary Gold picked only one player listed as a wing, and it’s clear that he thinks that position group should be more than just able to run in space. There really isn’t a lot of space on international fields for wings, anyway. So expect players who are listed at other positions (Nate Augspurger, Dylan Audsley, Ben Cima, Blaine Scully) to play wing or fullback.

Dino Waldren (London Scottish), Prop

Josh Whippy (Utah Warriors), Wing

Mike Te’o (San Diego Legion), Wing, Fullback
Injured. Te’o has a fairly serious knee injury and should be out for six months. Look for him to come back for the 2019 ARC.