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Major Challenges for Leaders in DII College Rugby

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Major Challenges for Leaders in DII College Rugby

Big Weekend for the Maine Black Bears. Photo @nono1776.

It's weird times in the NEWCRC.

After being touted quite heavily in these pages for its competitiveness top to bottom, the league has in fact split rather dramatically. The bottom half of the standings is now struggling and it's really a case of some teams going through some rebuilding at the same time that others are returning the majority of really good units.

We all (OK, maybe just GRR) got a little excited at the beginning of the season when New Hampshire and UMass-Lowell tied, and Vermont just barely edged Coast Guard 25-22. But few games have been close since then. Yes, UNH and UML are very close to each other, but it turns out they were still chasing the top three. Coast Guard is the only team not in the top three still clawing and scraping and fighting to be there.

This was all illustrated last weekend. While CGA won a tough game against Boston University 20-7 to go from 0-2 to, now, 2-2, the other three games were nowhere near as close. Winners scored 222 points and allowed ... zero. The chasm is real.

So what's going on?

Norwich is nicely positioned with an offense that is clicking. Marius Edwards is having an excellent season, Will Moulton is a handful, and really the Cadets have a ton of young, athletic players who score tries. Despite having had a significant turnover, Norwich rebuilt quickly and part of that is because they challenge themselves. They like to play tough games out-of-conference and aren't afraid to lose those games in the quest for improvement. Now at 3-0 with 170 points for and only 26 against, the Cadets are in excellent shape with some tough games to come.

Maine? Well we just talked about them. They also bring experience to the fore and were not at all intimidated about moving from small college to D2.

NEWCRC Kids on the Block, Maine Black Bears Are Winning

Coast Guard is still chasing, of course. 

"I'm impressed with the constant growth of the team and the way they play together," said Head Coach Shannon Heap. "The forwards have been great in set pieces, but I'm most impressed with the guys who have filled in for injured or suspended players. Even in positions that are new to them. The attitude has been great across the board."

Tough games to come? Well that's the whole point.

We talked a whole lot about the Great Midwest here, and one of the games we discusses, Northwestern at Chicago, got played Thursday with Chicago taking the win.

Shock Result Shakes Up Great Midwest

And we talk a little bit more about playoff implications this week also.

Who Is In The Hunt for Men D2 National Playoffs

Ranked vs Ranked include:
Kent State (23) vs Miami (20)
Vermont (5) vs Norwich (4)
Coast Guard (12) vs Maine (30)
Loyola (3) vs Chicago (19)
Villanova 7 vs Bloomsburg (27)
Colorado Mesa (38) vs Montana State (14)
Marist (10) vs Cornell (15)



Check Back For Scores:

10/12 Northwestern 8-24 Chicago Great Midwest
10/13 GVSU 26-38 Trine Non-Conf.
10/14 Kent State 12-17 Miami OH Allegheny
10/14 Western Kentucky 27-32 MTSU Allegheny
10/14 Marshall (SC) 57-0 Eastern Kentucky Allegheny
10/14 Xavier (SC) 27-20 S. Indiana (SC) Allegheny
10/14 Old Dominion 28-0 Longwood Cardinals
10/14 VCU at George Mason Cardinals
10/14 Christendom 24-24 Virginia Cardinals
10/14 GVSU 29-14 Calvin Great Lakes
10/14 Oakland at CMU Great Lakes
10/14 SVSU 3-45 Ferris Great Lakes
10/14 Northern Iowa 104-0 UW-Milwaukee Great Midwest
10/14 Marquette 64-12 UW-Platteville Great Midwest
10/14 Albany 42-13 RIT Liberty
10/14 WVU 3-52 IUP Alleghney
10/14 TCNJ 17-12 East Stroudsburg MARC North
10/14 Scranton 29-7 Bucknell MARC North
10/14 York 0-28 Drexel MARC South
10/14 Drexel 0-28 Georgetown MARC South
10/14 Boston University 0-49 UNH NEWCRC
10/14 UMass Lowell 17-7 Bentley NEWCRC
10/14 Vermont 13-32 Norwich NEWCRC
10/14 Coast Guard 19-31 Maine NEWCRC
10/14 Washington University 0-121 Lindenwood B Non-Conf.
10/14 MSU Mankato 31-15 St. John's Northern Lights
10/14 UW Stout 17-24 ND State Northern Lights
10/14 MSU Moorhead 31-5 UM Duluth Northern Lights
10/14 St. Thomas 28-0 St. Scholastica Northern Lights
10/14 Georgia Tech 10-32 Tennessee Tech SCRC
10/14 Valdosta State 27-20 Ole Miss SCRC
10/14 Coastal Carolina 31-13 East Carolina SoCon D2
10/14 SUNY Maritime 7-62 USMMA Tri-State
10/14 Colorado Mesa 19-29 Montana State High Peaks
10/15 Loyola 24-10 Chicago Great Midwest
10/15 Northwestern 31-17 Northern Illinois Great Midwest
10/15 Villanova 34-14 Bloomsburg MARC North
10/15 Marist Fft W-L Cornell Liberty