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The field for this weekend’s Club 7s Championships is set, with the Omaha G.O.A.T.S. taking the spot left vacant by Hawaii. Omaha finished third in the competitive Frontier region and is just a couple of hours from the championship site in Des Moines, Iowa.
After the original winner of Hawaii’s bid turned down the ticket to nationals, the Titans were tasked with filling in. It was unclear through Wednesday if they were going to be able to make the trip, thanks to a combination of a lack of funds and weather. When they ultimately couldn’t make it, Omaha stepped up to the plate.
The G.O.A.T.S. will presumably step right into Pool D with Belmont Shore, Denver and the U.S. Army Selects. Omaha is well familiar with Frontier foe Denver. The G.O.A.T.S. and Barbos last met July 25 in the final Frontier qualifier, with Denver winning 33-7. Omaha managed to make the final however, securing third in the series with a semifinal win over Glendale.
Pool A is populated by a couple of the tournament’s heavyweights in two-time defending champion Seattle and Midwest winner 1823. Charlotte, the South representative, and Dallas make up the rest of the pool.
Pool B is headlined by Old Blue, champion of the Northeast and a perennial contender. The Chicago Lions have limped back to a ninth-consecutive nationals berth, but done so unimpressively. The Austin Blacks are back for the second year in a row, this time looking like a more competitive group. And the Life West Gladiators are making their debut.
Pool C is a deep one, with the Kansas City Blues entering as the top seed. The Blues finished third at nationals last year and won the Frontier this summer. They’re as good as ever and won’t be satisfied with anything less than a title. Mystic River is another talented team from a very competitive qualifying region capable of making a deep run. Santa Monica is back for the second year in a row after finishing second in SoCal, and Schuylkill River returns for a fifth-straight appearance despite experiencing a bit of a down year.
This weekend’s festivities will be streamed live by USARugbyTV.