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CRAA 15s Championship Weekend Set for Saturday in Houston

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CRAA 15s Championship Weekend Set for Saturday in Houston

David Barpal photo.

Saturday sees Aveva Stadium in Houston as the venue for the College Rugby Association of American 8x8 Sports 15s Championship Weekend.

The event will have two major college 15s national championship games, plus two more spring championship games. 

The Men's D1A Final will be held at 6PM Central Time Saturday, with Saint Mary's taking on Army West Point.

Saint Mary's ran out to a 28-0 lead against Cal in the first of their semifinal. Cal answered with four tries and 26 points from just before halftime to about minute 18 of the second half. Holding onto a slim 28-26 lead, Saint Mary's scored midway through the second half and converted to make it 35-26. They held on from there.

Army used their strength in the mail and scrum to set up three tries and a 19-3 lead over Lindenwood. Lindenwood clawed back to make it 19-15, but Army's defensive stand in the final 15 minutes preserved the victory.

Life will take on Lindenwood in the Women's D1 Elite final after both won their semifinals two weeks ago. They will kick off at 4PM CT. 

The spring championships are women's D2 and D1. On Friday morning, the four D2 semifinalists will face off, with William & Mary taking on Claremont Colleges, and San Diego State playing Appalachian State. The winners will play at noon, CT on Saturday for the spring D2 championship. (In the fall, the D2 championship was played as part of ACRA and Vassar won that.)

Virginia Tech will play BYU in the women's D1 Spring final. In the fall, Navy defeated Davenport for the championship. Kickoff of the spring game is 2PM CT.

Women D1 and D1 Elite Finalists Set

“We are excited for the opportunity to have women’s and men’s competitions at the highest levels compete in the 8×8 Sports Championship Weekend,” said Olivia Benzan-Daniel, CRAA Women’s President. “Providing a professional environment for these championship matches creates a fantastic student-athlete and fan experience for college rugby.”

CRAA has partnered with The Rugby Network (TRN) to provide free online streaming of all four matches with professional broadcast production. TRN provides full 1080p HD streams with replays and highlights of every single MLR match. They also produce weekly rugby shows, documentaries, and latest news from the MLR.

“Our goal is to provide the student-athletes with a professional experience and deliver broadcast to all fans and spectators of the participating institutions,” said Paul Keeler, CRAA Chairperson. “Partnering with the Houston Sabercats and The Rugby Network is helping us achieve our goal and create great student athlete and fan experiences. This is an event we have greatly anticipated as top programs and divisions in college rugby come together for an electric championship Saturday,’ said USA Rugby CEO, Ross Young, “The collective effort by all involved to help this experience come to life is inspiring and a perfect showcase of rugby community values. We’re eager to see student-athletes, friends, families and fans descend on such a first-class facility as Aveva Stadium and hand out some championship hardware.”

AIG, Pearland Convention and Visitors Bureau and 8×8 Sports have also stepped up to partner the CRAA Championship Weekend. 8×8 Sports, an American rugby apparel company, is the “naming partner” of the overall event and has also sponsored the CRAA Fall Classic in Charlotte, NC. AIG and Pearland are “event partners” for the event, who have provided resources to benefit the championship participants. Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the event.

The College Rugby Association of America (CRAA) is a USA Rugby sanctioned competition that includes premier divisions within Men’s and Women’s Collegiate rugby. The competition includes Men’s D1A, Women’s D1 Elite, Women’s D1 and Women’s D2. CRAA is committed to creating the best possible experience for student athletes, keeping commercial resources in the collegiate game, and creating experiences for our members to engage their academic institutions and alumni