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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

DI Recap & Playoff Outlook


The playoffs are coming into increased focus with another big round of DI club play. Here is a look around each region.

Pacific North

The Life West Gladiators and ORSU have advanced to the Pacific North championship after winning their respective NorCal and Pacific Northwest playoffs. The Gladiators have been the favorite team in NorCal all year with blowout wins, however, they have lost some of their players to PRO Rugby. The results have been closer but even with missing players the Gladiators beat the EPA Razorbacks 22-15 for the NorCal title. ORSU beat Eastside Tsunami 31-28. The two teams will square off on May 7th in Seattle for the right to see who plays the top team from the Pacific South.

Pacific South

The hunt for the playoffs is still very much alive. The Old Aztecs are still the number one seed despite not playing over the weekend. OMBAC, LA, and Belmont Shore are all still in the chase. OMBAC are the number two team at the moment, five points ahead of LA thanks to their 29-21 win over Santa Monica. LA beat Belmont Shore 31-30 in a crucial result. They almost lost the match but a late conversion from Belmont Shore was off the mark. Belmont Shore have a game in hand over OMBAC and LA but sit seven points behind OMBAC. The top two teams will have a playoff to see who makes the national quarterfinals.

Take the jump to read more.
Red River

We always knew the Red River was going to come down to the Dallas Reds vs. the Austin Blacks and thanks to the schedule makers it's going to literally come down to those two teams next week to decide who is the top seed in the playoffs. The Blacks moved their record to a perfect 11-0 with a 24-7 win over rivals the Austin Huns. Pat Sullivan had three penalties to go along with tries from Levi Kereti and Pierce Reed as well as a penalty from Stephen Jones. The Reds had the weekend off. The other match in the region saw the Griffins firmly establish themselves as the number three team with a 79-0 win over the Dallas Harlequins.

Midwest

The Midwest regular season came to a close over the weekend with the Chicago Lions losing for the first time all season. In the end their 27-17 loss to the Griffins didn't really matter as they had already clinched the top spot in the playoffs. They will get a rematch next week in the Midwest semi-finals.

The other semi-final will see Metropolis, the number two seed, play Kansas City. Those two teams also played over the weekend with the Blues winning 19-13. The Blues raced out to a 19-6 lead on tries from Greg McAvoy, Cody Weber, and Austin Clarke as opposed to two penalties from Trace Bolstad. Logan Hanson had a late try for Metropolis. The last match in the region saw Columbus finish out their season with a 29-11 win over Palmer.

Atlantic North

The winner out of the Midwest is going to take on the Atlantic North number two team. That's either going to be Mystic River or Old Blue depending on how things shake out next week. Mystic River put themselves in position to be the top team if they beat NYAC next week thanks to their 32-17 win over Old Blue. If Mystic River loses then Old Blue will be the top seed and Mystic river will play the winner of the Midwest.

Alatasi Tupou put Mystic River up early with a penalty before Luke Schlotman added a try.  Old Blue hurt themselves when Rick Kirkland was shown a yellow card and that allied Jared Collinson to score and put Mystic River up 15-0. In the second half they extended that to 20-0 when Stephen Dazzo scored. A penalty from James Bird and then a try helped pull Old Blue to within ten before a try from Nathan Fox built the lead back up. The teams traded tries late in the match. NYAC are out of both the ARP and the DI race so they may rest players next week.

Mid-Atlantic

The top seed from the Atlantic North will play the winner from the Mid-Atlantic. Right now that is looking very much like Rocky Gorge. They improved to 13-0 with a 55-8 win over the Pittsburgh Harlequins. If the Mid-Atlantic playoffs started right now they would play the Baltimore-Chesapeake Brumbies. The Brumbies held on to that spot despite losing to the Norfolk Blues 40-22 because of the Harlequins loss. The Harlequins can still make the playoffs with a result next week.

The Blues are the number two team and would play Schuylkill River. The Philadelphia side beat the Potomac Exiles 38-20. Additionally, the Raleigh Vipers beat NOVA 48-24. There is still one more week to play before the playoffs.

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