Women’s Falcons to Begin 2018 Okinawa Sevens Invitational

Developmental squad brings capped returners to defend Okinawa title

CHULA VISTA, CA. - After going undefeated to win the Invitational Cup at last year's Okinawa Sevens, the Women's Falcons travel to Japan this week for the 2018 tournament, Feb. 23-24. The developmental squad, lead by San Diego Surfer Sevens Head Coach Jarrod Faul, will have the opportunity to play with capped returners Kate Zackary and Kelsi Stockert; facing Japan A, Fiji and Russia in a skilled competition.

Head Coach Jarrod Faul is looking forward to another tour with the Falcons, noting how vital these competitions are to the evolution of elite athletes.

"This is another exciting opportunity to continue to grow individually and to further develop as a team and build confidence on the international stage," said Faul.

International competition at the developmental level continues to be a pivotal part of the pathway to growing Eagles. With the 2017-18 HSBC World Sevens Series still underway, and the 2019 Rugby World Cup Sevens quickly approaching, this tour will be an important stepping stone for each player.

During the 2017 Okinawa Sevens, the United States went completely undefeated, earning the Cup Title and returning home with a significant boost in confidence. Current Women's Sevens standouts Nicole Heavirland, Ryan Carlyle and Cheta Emba were all part of the 2017 competition, solidifying a link between the history of this tour and future success. 

The Falcons will depart for Okinawa on Tuesday (Feb. 20) for competition to begin Feb. 23 at Zanpa Misaki Ball Park in Japan. With a few days to train, the Falcons will face Japan A, Fiji and Russia in Pool B on Day One. While streaming information has not been posted yet, updates will be available by following @USARugby on Twitter.

Women's Falcons Roster | 2018 Okinawa Sevens Tournament

Sarah Buonopane
Chelsey Birgisdóttir
Ashlee Byrge
Natalie Kosko
Dani McDonald
Alena Olsen
Neariah (Nene) Persinger
Hope Rogers
Kelli Smith
Kelsi Stockert
Kate Zackary

Women's Falcons Staff | 2018 Okinawa Sevens Tournament

Head Coach - Jarrod Faul
Athletic Trainer - Brianne Arsenault
Team Manager - Leanna Corpus

Women's Falcons Schedule | 2018 Okinawa Sevens Tournament

vs Japan A | Fri, Feb. 23 - 8:22 PM ET
vs Fiji | Fri, Feb. 23 - 11:07 PM ET
vs Russia | Sat, Feb. 24 - 1:52 AM ET