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With less than four weeks to go before the USA Rugby Club 7s National Championship begins in New York City, only 13 spots are left. Nineteen of the 32 teams have already qualified for the tournament and here is how each region breaks down:
The three seeds from the Frontier have basically been wrapped up with one final tournament, the Denver 7s, on July 28th. Bulldog Rugby won the Barbarian 7s in late June with the Denver Barbarians and Peaks Rugby coming in second and third.
Saturday’s Heartland 7s was off to a great start but the event was canceled due to weather. According to the USA Club 7s website, Denver and Kansas City were awarded five points for the tournament and Bulldog Rugby and the Omaha GOATS received 1.5 points each. Peaks did not compete in the event. The final order of the top three teams will be determined after the Denver 7s later this month.
With one spot up for grabs in only two tournaments, the Kansas City Jazz is out front as of now. The Jazz won the Rocky Mountains 7s over the Rocky Mountain Magic on July 7th and was 2-0-1 in pool play at the Heartland 7s before play was suspended. The allocation of points from Saturday have not been determined as of yet.
The Beltway Elite won the final MAC qualifier to return to Nationals for the second straight year. At the Philadelphia 7s, Beltway faced off against Schuylkill River in their fourth final against each other and the Elite captured its third consecutive MAC qualifier to beat the Exiles, 26-19.
All three of the bids for the women were essentially settled before Saturday. After coming in second and third in the first two tournaments, the D.C. Furies won the final qualifier over Scion to earn the second seed of the region. The Scion Sirens secured the first seed with a pair of first place finishes and Northern Virginia (NOVA) locked up the third spot.
After three qualifying tournaments, it all comes down to the Cin City 7s on July 28th for the Midwest Championships. Two clubs from the men and women qualify from the Midwest.
Currently, Metropolis and the Chicago Lions have squared off in the past three tournament finals with the Minnesota club winning each event. The Cincinnati Wolfhounds and Chicago Blaze are lingering in the background but it will most likely be the same two teams in the final in two weeks.
It’s much the same for the women as the Chicago Lions have notched two tournament wins as opposed to Metropolis’ one. Both teams should beware of Cincinnati who placed second at the Firehouse 7s and third in the past two events.
The Northeast completed its summer 7s series on Saturday at the Saratoga 7s. Old Blue ran away with the region’s top seed after finishing going undefeated in all four events. After coming in second in three of the tournaments, Mystic River took the second seed and NYAC ended up with the third seed.
For the women, it’s been a race between three clubs for the two bids to Nationals. Like Old Blue, New York was unstoppable with three tournament victories. Beantown grabbed second at Newport 7s, but Boston rebounded at the next two events to earn the last spot for the Northeast.
The Pacific North Championship is July 28th at the Tacoma Aroma 7s and teams from NorCal and the Pacific Northwest will gather to decide who will represent the region. The men get only one spot at Nationals while the women have three tickets to be booked.
With two tournaments completed in both sub-regions, the top squads of Washington Athletic, Boise Selects, Olympic Club, Sacramento Capitals, and Life West will compete at the championships in two weeks. Washington Athletic finished third at Nationals last year but the Olympic Club has impressed so far this summer.
As for the women, it’s a four-team race between ORSU and Washington Athletic from the PNW and Life West and Berkeley All Blues from NorCal. With three spots available, one team won’t make it. ORSU and Life West are undefeated so far this season but you can’t overlook Washington Athletic with players from Seattle Atavus.
Based on the results of the Sunsplash 7s on Saturday, all the bids in the Pacific South were determined. Belmont Shore is sending two sides to Nationals along with a strong Santa Monica squad for the men and the San Diego Surfers are crossing the country for the women. Belmont has two separate teams with one berth earned from winning the Western Open and the second for coming in third in the region. The Surfers dominated the competition with twin first-place finishes at the OMBAC and Santa Monica 7s.
After Dallas won the Eastern Open for an automatic bid to Nationals, the Red River will now get a second spot. New Orleans looks to be in line for that spot as it placed second at the Bloodfest 7s and beat Dallas for first on Saturday at the Tornado Alley 7s.
The two seeds for the Red River women have already been qualified before the last event at the HARC 7s in two weeks. The American Rugby Pro Training Center will be sending two sides to Nationals after the Blue and White squads swept the first two tournaments.
The South was first to play and first to have its teams qualified for Nationals. The Atlanta Old White secured the men’s bid while the Atlanta Harlequins and Phoenix Rugby are in for the women.