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(Additional reporting from Joe O'Brien)

Sunday's DI semifinals are set after Saturday's quarterfinals in Pittsburgh, Pa. and Irving, Texas. Life and Metropolis will meet in one semifinal, and the Dallas Reds and New Orleans in the other.

In what many considered the DI championship match being played a few rounds too early, Life overcame an early deficit to beat NYAC 24-8 in Pittsburgh.

NYAC opened scoring with a try in the eighth minute, taking a 5-0 advantage. Life had some chances at scoring early on, but couldn't convert. Two attacking Running Eagle lineouts were stolen by the AC, and an attempt at finding touch was kicked through the try zone.

The AC added a penalty kick near the 20-minute mark to go up 8-0, but did leave some points on the board, too, having been held up in the try zone and failing to turn that possession into points. Life was also held up in the opening half, but managed to eventually get in. Aza McMaster converted the try, pulling the Running Eagles within one at 8-7 going into halftime.

Cornelius Dirksen put Life up with the first try of the second half. The score went unconverted, and Life led 12-8. The scoreboard wouldn't move until the 68th minute when Garrett Lambert caught an offload from Lance Cavanaugh to extend the lead to two scores at 17-8. Chance Doyle scored a try, converted by AJ MacGinty, at full time to flatter the final result.

The other Pittsburgh game wasn't nearly the contest, as Metropolis waltzed to a 59-8 defeat of Schuylkill River. The Minnesotans will likely benefit Sunday from being able to empty the bench in the blowout, while Life will surely be stiff after a bruising rivalry game.

In suburban Dallas, both games ended up being decided by wide margins, with Dallas beating Los Angeles 51-5 and New Orleans topping the Sacramento Lions 62-32.

The host Reds were truly dominant in their win, taking a 20-0 lead into halftime and not letting off the pedal in the second half.

"One thing we were determined to do was we had to stay tight, we had to use the ball well," said Dallas coach Dean Robinson.

"We recognized early on where we could take advantage of some of the things they would show us defensively. And the guys played well together. They moved the ball well. Our defense was absolutely superb."

Dallas openside flanker Chad Joseph had an outstanding performance, running in three tries against LA. He deflected praise to his fellow forwards.

"We owe it to our tight five. They put up a good fight and got us nice, clean ball for our backs to make some decent plays, and really happy with how we went," said Joseph.

"We stuck together as a pack, and I was lucky enough to be on the end of some solid work from the tight five and in the right place at the right time."

New Orleans had to work a little harder for their win, as the Lions were able to go punch-for-punch until the game's final quarter. New Orleans led 28-17 at halftime, and 36-17 early in the second. The Lions pulled within nine at 36-27, but NOLA ran away with it from there.

The results set up Dallas and New Orleans, both members of the Red River Conference, for their third contest this season.   

"I think today was a good demonstration of how strong Texas rugby really is," said Robinson. "It's a good time to be playing rugby in Texas."

Dallas and New Orleans tied 12-12 in the league opener in Texas back in November, and New Orleans beat the Reds 19-10 in Louisiana April 5th.

"If we make the most of our opportunities, we'll definitely be there in the end of the game and hopefully we'll be on top," said Joseph of Sunday's impending match-up.

"New Orleans, they've been here before. They've been in finals footy before, so they'll come out firing. We've just got to counter that and hopefully we can put up a good fight. We're ready for a big game."