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Four of the eight seeds for the Mid-Atlantic playoffs will be decided this weekend, and the race for two more will be pared down to two.
The Potomac will see its semifinals, finals and third-place game played out Saturday and Sunday, with the top three finishers advancing to the MARFU playoffs. Three of the semifinalists, Salisbury, Towson and Georgetown, are the same as last year, while Mt. St. Mary’s is new to the mix.
In the quarterfinals Salisbury defeated Johns Hopkins 78-0, Georgetown thumped Navy C 48-5, Towson trounced George Washington 61-0 and Mt. St. Mary’s outscored UMBC 44-27. Defending MARFU champ Salisbury draws Mt. St. Mary’s in one semifinal, and in the other Towson and Georgetown meet for a rematch from last year’s final four.
Towson beat Georgetown convincingly last year after a tight first half, and the Baltimore program returns the bulk of that team.
“They haven’t lost too many players from last year’s team, so we kind of know what to expect from their team,” said Georgetown coach JP Perez. “I haven’t seen them play this year, but going just by the score, they’ve really continued to improve, and they have good coaching and the same players from last year, so it’s going to be a challenge again for us this year.”
The other semifinal seems like a foregone conclusion. The Sharks look likely to return to the national semifinals, while Mt. St. Mary’s looks likely to finish fourth in the Potomac. Mt. St. Mary’s beat Johns Hopkins, who lost 78-0 to Salisbury, by one point earlier this year.
The EPRU semifinals also take place Saturday, but the finals and third-place games are delayed until Nov. 19. Villanova and East Stroudsburg square off in one semifinal just a week after ESU beat Nova 34-5. The other semifinal pits The College of New Jersey against Lafayette. When they met Oct. 22, College of New Jersey won 24-5. Since Eastern Penn’s St. Joe’s reached the MARFU finals last season, the EPRU gets three bids to the territorial championships this year.
The remaining two seeds to the MARFU playoffs go to Virginia, where currently VMI sits in first place. However, VMI’s season is done, and Radford has one game left, against Mary Washington Nov. 12. If Radford wins, ties or scores two bonus points in a loss, it takes the VRU’s top seed. Any other outcome makes VMI the Virginia champ.