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Top Takeaways from the Rugby Weekend

  • 09 Oct 2023
RUGBY update

Plenty of rugby to digest last weekend, and the following is a quick review of significant results, titles awarded, teams drawing intrigue – anything that stirred interest. For a full review of girls and women’s rugby scores from last weekend, click here: Oct. 6-8 Results. There is more rugby happening in between those paragraph breaks – DIII club festivals, 7s round robins between developing colleges – but the results page tracks regular-season games and in-season friendlies.

Also, what can you expect this week in terms of interviews (which are available to subscribers only)? Cassandra Tong (Berkeley), Mose Timoteo (CO Gray Wolves), Grace DeSanto (North Buffalo & New Zealand), Christine Varga (NCR Growth & Development Director), and American University’s Claire Heinly, Colleen Burns and Talar Hso – and more to be booked!



On Saturday, the Women’s Premier League (WPL) held its national semifinals. Berkeley hosted Beantown, and the visitors took a 17-12 lead into the half. The All Blues then scored three tries in the third quarter to provide the cushion for a 31-24 victory. Stay tuned for an interview with Berkeley flanker Cassandra Tong. • Colorado Gray Wolves hosted New York, and the teams also had a wild third quarter where four tries were scored between the two sides. The Gray Wolves put five teammates away for tries, while New York logged three: 31-21 the final. Stay tuned for an interview with Colorado coach Mose Timoteo.

The WPL national championship is Saturday, Oct. 14 at Infinity Park in Glendale, Colo.


NIRA was relatively quiet (Brown and West Chester recorded conference wins) with fall breaks hitting the calendar but there were two interesting non-conference matches between NCAA varsity programs and DI Elite teams. NIRA DI champion Dartmouth hosted DI Elite champion Lindenwood, and the Lions outscored the Big Green six tries to three, 30-15 the final. The match was a great tune-up for the teams’ biggest regular-season games of the fall. On Oct. 21, Lindenwood plays Life (which beat Central Washington 41-5 in Ellensburg), and Dartmouth plays Harvard. • DI Elite’s Penn State welcomed NIRA DI Queens Univ. of Charlotte to University Park, Pa., and took the first lead of the friendly. But the Royals had plenty of giddy-up for a 26-20 win.


There were plenty of games within NCR, but of those that were close and/or meaningful … A late try from DI Indiana put the Redstorm atop Michigan State 15-10. Indiana remains in second place in the Big 10 behind the undefeated Michigan. • DII Louisiana State Univ. keeps drawing interest in the Lone Star conference, and that intrigue only grew after a 41-5 win over Univ. Texas. Stay tuned for incoming interview(s). • In DII MARC North, Temple is the favorite and currently 3-0, but Delaware has performed well in tying Kutztown then beating Bloomsburg 41-32. • Of the friendlies, DI Southern Nazarene and Small College Wayne State College tested each other, and the Oklahoma side won 61-7.

But perhaps the most attention grabbing: Columbia Univ. beat Vassar College 28-20 in Tri-State league play. The Brewers are the reigning DII CRAA fall champion.



Lopsided scores tended to reign this past weekend. Of the closest games, DII Capital’s NOVA and Norfolk tied at 10-all, and reigning DII Eastern Pennsylvania champ Phoenixville held off Doylestown 42-35. First-season North Bay won its first DIII EPRU game 11-7 against Reading.

2022-23 DII national runner-up Severn River is running two teams in the Capital this year and won its DII game 32-0 against James River, and lost its DIII game 10-5 to the Chesapeake Stingers. • New England was relatively quiet, as was DII Empire, but for different reasons. Empire has seen cancelations – some due to weather – but also forfeits and combination teams this fall.

The Midwest saw a lot of uneven results, and the Premiership saw its first forfeit. This region is in the second half of its regular season so teams are seeing each other for the second time this fall. Playoffs are nigh. (Check out Prem & DII standings as managed by the Midwest Rugby Union) • In Mid-America, KC Jazz and Omaha played a 17-10 friendly, the win going to the Jazz. • Denver Black Ice hit the road for a Rocky Mountain doubleheader and took two losses: 67-5 to the DI Utah Vipers, and 35-10 to the DII Salt City Slugs.



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Indiana and Utah both held their fall 7s championship last weekend. On Saturday, the Majestics won both the high school and JV titles. The Majestics are also the reigning high school club 15s national champions. • At Moose Rugby Grounds in Elkhart, Westside Revenge took home the Rugby Indiana title after defeating Ft Wayne Carroll 22-15 in the final. Westside also won the boys’ high school 7s title.

It was a wild weekend in Wisconsin, which is one of only two states that plays its championship 15s season in the fall. DSHA JV and Hamilton tied 31-31, and the Dashers’ varsity side took a forfeit win against the Bruisers. A Catholic Memorial comeback produced a 22-19 win against Green Bay. And Stevens Point shut out the Muskego/Madison team 58-0.


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