SANTIAGO, Chile — United’s Zach Webber helped the USA Rugby High School All-Americans to a sweep of the Chile U-19 team on Thursday.
The HSAAs produced a commanding performance to beat Chile 41-15 in the presence of the U.S. Ambassador, Alejandro Wolff. The U.S. team scored six tries, four conversions and one penalty by 10 new starters, showing the depth and ability of the 32-man roster.
Nuu Aiava (Keauka’a Sharks) produced outstanding offense, finishing with two tries, bringing his tally to four on the South American tour. On top, he added a devastating tackle on the Chile fullback early in the first half that set the tone for the Team USA defense. Webber matched Aiava with another double, however the most valuable back performance came from sophomore flyhalf Ben Cima (Gonzaga College H.S.) “His game management and vision is impressive,” said Salty Thompson, HSAA head coach.
Brad Luvender (Katy, Texas) a U17 lock in April, started at 8-man and set the tone in go forward among a group of punishing runners. Solomone Anitema (Maui Rugby) and Inoke Raikadroka (South Bay Youth Rugby Spartans) hurt the Chilean defense with effective power running, propelling the U.S. backs that produced five tries.
A 36-3 U.S. lead at halftime rallied the Chile team to come back to score twelve points in the second half. Michael Reid (Warrenton, Va.) produced the only points for the U.S. with a 50-yard solo run and try.