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Italy hold on against committed USA Eagles fightback

Hooker Ornel Gega touches down for Italy in San Jose. Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

SAN JOSE, California -- Conor O'Shea went some way to making up for defeat in his opening match at the Italy helm with a narrow 24-20 victory over the USA.

The former Harlequins coach saw his new side lose to Argentina last week as they kicked off their tour of the Americas, but they managed to hold off a strong USA fightback to claim a win on Saturday.

Albanian-born hooker Ornel Gega scored his second try of the match from a rolling maul in the 56th minute and Italy held on for a 24-20 win in San Jose.

New Zealand-born flanker Tony Lamborn, making his test debut for the USA, scored a try with four minutes remaining and A.J. MacGinty kicked the conversion to pull the Americans to within a point at 21-20.

But Italy defended strongly and fly-half Carlo Canna kicked a late penalty, his third of the match, along with a dropped goal and conversion.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.