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USA 7s Warm Up in Fiji

  • 21 Sep 2023

USA RUGBY – The USA Women’s Sevens are heading to Fiji for a six-game warmup tournament ahead of the Olympic season as Head Coach Emilie Bydwell announced a 14-player traveling roster. [lead graphic c/o @usarugby]

The 2023 FRU Women’s Mini Sevens will take place September 28-29 in Lautoka. The Fiji Rugby Union has yet to confirm streaming. Scores will be posted on USA Rugby social media channels.

The USA will face off with fellow SVNS Series regulars Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and France in Lautoka, giving the Eagles an opportunity to test their early progress ahead of an important season.

Head Coach Emilie Bydwell highlighted the importance of the Fiji tournament for the team’s development:

“For us, this tournament is really well-timed. We are in our seventh week of preseason now, and we’ve had some things we wanted to work on and develop off the back of last season. We’ve been working hard at home, but unless we get the opportunity to play and compete, we’re not able to gauge what that progress looks like. To be able to have the quality of competition in New Zealand, Australia, France, and Fiji, will help us be able to assess ourselves. It’s meaningful to us because we have another big block leading into PanAmerican Games and Dubai, so we’ll have a more informed plan about how we approach those tournaments.”

The 14-player roster includes Ilona Maher and Jaz Gray, who both return to the tournament pitch following injuries sustained during the 2023 Sevens Series. Lauren Doyle and Naya Tapper will co-captain the squad.

“We wanted to select a very strong team to go to Fiji,” Bydwell said. “We have the luxury of having 14 players and using them all across the tournament allows us to look at some different combinations and people in positions that they may not have played on the series as much. We also can make sure everyone that goes to this tournament will get meaningful moments in pressure situations, that’s a real priority.”


#1 Cheta Emba – Prop/Hooker
#2 Ilona Maher – Center
#3 Kayla Canett – Flyhalf
#5 Alev Kelter – Center
#6 Alena Olsen – Scrumhalf
#7 Naya Tapper (C) – Wing
#11 Kristen Thomas – Prop/Hooker
#12 Kristi Kirshe – Prop/Hooker
#17 Alex “Spiff” Sedrick – Center
#21 Ariana Ramsey – Scrumhalf/Wing
#22 Sammy Sullivan – Prop/Wing
#23 Lauren Doyle (C) – Wing
#27 Summer Harris-Jones – Prop/Hooker
#99 Jaz Gray – Wing


Head Coach | Emilie Bydwell
Assistant Coach | Zack Test
Strength & Conditioning | Trey Ford
Athletic Trainer | Nicole Titmas
Team Manager | Liz Strohecker


Kickoff times listed in ET
Wednesday, September 27
v. Aussie Green | 5:50pm
v. Aussie Gold | 8:30pm

Thursday, September 28
v. France | 12am (Wed night)
v. Fiji | 5pm
v. New Zealand | 9:30pm

Finals begin 11:20pm 

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