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College, club, and professional rugby are in the final preparation for the playoffs and the start of Major League Rugby season. For college, the D1A playoffs begin Saturday and the spring D1AA started this weekend. Club rugby has a few weeks left before the postseason, but the most of the MLR finished it’s preseason ahead of the openers on April 21st.
In a rematch between Saint Mary’s and Cal, the Gaels swept the series with a 21-12 victory to enter the D1A playoffs undefeated. Both squads should host the opening rounds on Saturday and BYU may join them with a 38-22 win over Central Washington. San Diego State was unable to improve its case to the playoffs as the Aztecs fell to Cal Poly and Utah blasted Arizona State, 46-5, in its final game.
The Red River concluded its season in Austin, Texas with its championship weekend. Texas Tech won the first game over Houston to take seventh place, Texas cracked Arkansas, 71-31, for fifth place, and LSU beat Oklahoma, 41-10, for third place. In the championship final with a spot in the D1A playoffs on the line, Texas A&M dominated Baylor to a 29-7 victory.
In the quarterfinal round of the spring D1AA playoffs, Nevada-Reno came back to beat Western Washington, 40-34, and Cal State Long Beach outlasted Chico State, 36-28, in the western regional. At the eastern regional, Dartmouth advanced beating Missouri, 31-10, and Central Florida edged Kansas, 33-20. Sunday’s semifinals will be Nevada-Reno versus Cal State Long Beach in the west and Dartmouth against Central Florida in the east.
For the final preseason weekend for most of the MLR, four games were played on Friday and Saturday. Utah fell to the Ontario Arrows on Friday night but will have a chance on April 14th to end its preseason on a high note against the Prairie Wolfpack. On Saturday, the Glendale Raptors completed an undefeated ramp-up with a 35-22 win over NYAC, NOLA continued to improve with a 38-10 win against the Austin Elite, and the Houston Sabercats came back to beat the San Diego Legion, 33-17.
Lastly in club land, there are only two teams left unbeaten after OMBAC fell from the ranks at the hands of Belmont Shore on Saturday. Down 20-17 at the halftime, Belmont scored 25 unanswered points in the second half to win and in the other PRP test, Santa Monica beat the Olympic Club, 36-25. In the Mid-Atlantic, Rocky Gorge remained undefeated with a 48-21 whipping of the Washington Irish, but the Norfolk Blues right behind after beating Schuylkill River, 69-19. The Potomac Exiles finally peaked their heads above 0.500 with a 28-26 win over Baltimore-Chesapeake and out in the Red River, Dallas picked up a one-point victory over Glendale.