March 22, 2024

Tournaments Abound Saturday, 3 to Qualify

Three teams will win automatic qualification to the Collegiate Rugby Championship this weekend, with one Men’s Premier Cup and two Men’s Small College qualifiers on the docket. There are also a bevy of quality, resume-building friendly tournaments before Easter slows the action down next weekend and conference championships pick up next month. 

Small College teams look to join Christendom in punching their tickets to Maryland at the second and third of nine regional open qualifiers at Western Oregon University in Monmouth, OR and the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, CO Saturday.

The Southern Conference’s interdivisional series rolls to its second stop in Wingate, NC. IUP is hosting the St. Paddy’s Tournament in Indiana, PA, featuring men and women of various divisions. Icefest in Menomonie, WI is a Men’s Small College tournament, and Niagara Women are hosting the Fox 7s Sunday in Lewiston, NY. 

The Men’s Premier Cup qualifier series rolls to the sixth of eight stops this weekend with the Fighting Irish Invitational in South Bend, IN. There are 16 teams in the qualifier bracket and a total of 41 overall, including ancillary divisions, making it the second-largest college 7s tournament in the country behind the CRC.  

Defending champion Indiana is back as a favorite, as is Notre Dame College, who the Hoosiers defeated in last year’s final. Indiana faces in-state foe Trine in the opening round, and already-qualified Iowa Central could be looming in the second round, if the Tritons can get past Western Michigan. 

NDC opens up against Minnesota, who struggled in Kansas City last weekend, and awaits either Aquinas or Virginia Tech in the second round. The Hokies are fresh off winning their own Sandman 7s, defeating Queens in the semifinal and South Carolina in the final. 

SCRC favorite Kentucky draws Michigan in the opening round, with either Kutztown or Nebraska looming in the second round. The Golden Bears are looking to get over the championship hump in their third qualifier, having lost in the semifinals at Frostbite and in the final at Terrapins 7s. 

Several Premier Cup candidates are also in action at the Old Blue 7s in Mt. Vernon, NY, including the Frostbite champions and runners-up, respectively, Babson and AIC. Siena and St. Bonaventure have also looked formidable this spring, while Brown is making its 7s debut.  

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