April 27, 2024

Top-Seeded Louisville caps off dominant tournament with DI Cup Championship

The Louisville Cardinals secured a DI Championship and their top player, Liam Johnson, secured a spot on the All-Tournament team along with six of his fellow DI super stars. 

Sean O’Donnell - Purdue

Luke Mathis - Tennessee

Liam Johnson - Louisville

Craig Jablonski - NC State

Felix Olivero - Florida

Logan Lair - Missouri

Paul Habeeb - San Diego 

Louisville came into the CRCs as the top dogs in the East region and showed the world why by running through the bracket, and shutting out NC State in the Cup Final, 29-0. Liam Johnson got the scoring going quickly, utilizing the referee’s advantage call on a knock-on and dotting it down for a try. Both defenses then stiffened up until the very end of the half, when Jack Eberle scored a try to put Louisville up 10-0 at the break. In the second half, Angelo Eklo scored back-to-back tries to increase the Cardinal’s lead to 24-0. Johnson, who would be named the game’s MVP, scored one more try to put a bow on the win for Louisville. 

The two seventh seeds who made it to the semifinals, Florida and Tennessee, hoped to extend their underdog runs into the finals but, in the end, were unsuccessful in playing spoiler. The Gators had many offensive chances, but miscues and difficulties with ball handling, due in part to some sustained periods of rain, did not help their cause. Their opponent, NC State, played strong defense and took advantage of Florida’s mistakes, crossing the whitewash twice in a 12-0 win. 

The next semi final also ended in a 12-0 victory, this time with Louisville pitching the shoutout over the Volunteers. Again, the rain played a factor in the game, with both teams struggling to find footing offensively. In the end, Louisville came away with the win thanks to tries by Eklo and Danny Bombard. 

San Diego were the DI Plate champions, winning in dominant fashion over North Carolina 31-0. The Toreros defense was impenetrable and a full team effort, while the offense was carried by Daniel Suhr, who scored 11 points in the win. In the Bowl final, Purdue shut out Salisbury 26-0. DI Club leading scorer and All-Tournament team selection Sean O’Donnell scored two tries in the Boilermakers win, one of which included a 60-meter breakaway. As for the Shield final, UMass prevailed in a close game against Missouri, 17-12. Logan Lair, who joined O’Donnell on the All-Tournament team, touched down his fourth try of the tournament for Missouri, but it wasn’t enough to carry the Tigers to victory.

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