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Men DII College Playoff Picture: The Northeast

College Men

Men DII College Playoff Picture: The Northeast

In a month the USA Rugby Men's DII College playoffs start, and there are still some seeds and spots to be confirmed.

The play-in weekend before the Round of 16 is the big open-ended question. USA Rugby has run a few play-ins for lower seeds of major conferences against teams from conferences not considered so strong. With there being no confirmation yet whether Iowa Central CC will be pushed to DIAA or remain in DII, and with other conference changes, including Minnesota-Duluth switching to the Great Midwest, there's a little shifting to be done.

Here's a look, though, on the conferences in the northern part of the East Coast, where no team, except maybe one, really has ascendency.

Rugby Northeast

Norwich won the late-season clash that could be a preview of the conference final. With Bentley—the only team to beat Norwich, which they did in Week 1—beating Providence in a close one to round out the season, we've got our top four:

#1 Norwich vs #4 Providence
#2 UMass-Lowell vs #3 Bentley

It seems a little odd that Bentley would beat the team that has been the strongest in the conference for years, Norwich, would drop to third, but that's what can happen. Bentley beat Norwich 11-10, so Norwich had the close-loss bonus point, and then when UMass-Lowell beat Bentley, it was all on. The Cadets then beat Lowell last week to sew it all up. 

Norwich Beats UMass Lowell, Takes Top Seed In RNE

Rugby Northeast W L T PF PA PD   BL PTS
Norwich 4 1 0 234 91 143   1 17
UMass Lowell 4 1 0 189 76 113   0 16
Bentley 4 1 0 97 68 29   0 16
Providence 2 3 0 126 145 -19   1 9
Middlebury 1 4 0 89 96 -7   2 6
New England College 0 5 0 0 335 -335   0 0

NEWCRC

There's more rugby to be played in the NEWCRC season. 

NEWCRC W L T PF PA PD BT BL PTS
Boston University 4 0 0 169 13 156 4 0 20
Vermont 4 0 0 119 10 109 4 0 20
Coast Guard 3 1 0 86 43 43 3 0 15
Quinnipiac 3 2 0 95 126 -31 3 0 15
Southern Connecticut 1 3 0 24 177 -153 1 0 5
Sacred Heart 1 5 0 43 67 -24 1 -4 1
Hartford 0 5 0 72 172 -100 2 -1 1

Boston University will have two major games to defend their undefeated record—Vermont October 26 and Coast Guard November 2. they will need all of the try-scoring acumen of Josh Devereaux, Matthew Kuttel, and Alexander McCall, and points-leader Mats Najberg to get by those two. 

This is a very tight fight for the top spot, and there's no guarantee that NEWCRC will get an additional seed for the teams that don't quite make it.

Tri-State

The regular season capped off with Kings Point tying Seton Hall. Kings Point didn't need to win, having already clinched 1st place. The big result was William Paterson rebounding nicely from a big loss two weeks ago to the Merchant Marine Academy to beat RPI 22-20. RPI started well with a shutout win over Seton Hall, and then a very close loss to Kings Point.

But that close loss cost the Engineers as they struggled after that. Marist did win, beating an athletic Monroe team 29-24 in a downpour. John Schneider kept up the try-scoring trend with two.

Tri-State North W L D PF PA PD   BP Pts
USMMA, Kings Point 4 0 1 145 95 50   4 22
William Paterson  4 1 0 150 135 15   3 19
Marist College  3 2 0 180 110 70   6 18
RPI 2 3 0 124 103 21   3 11
Monroe  2 3 0 93 114 -21   3 11
Seton Hall  0 4 1 24 175 -151   0 2

What that leaves us with is a bye for the US Merchant Marine Academy and William Paterson. Marist will play Seton Hall and RPI will play Monroe this weekend. Marist is favored against Seton Hall, but that RPI-Monroe game is up in the air.

Then November 3 the winners of those games will face Kings Point and WPU. The Tri State hasn't done well in the national playoffs, so likely only the champion will likely go into the post-season.

MARC

Conversely, the MARC has done well in the national playoffs, at least relatively well, and as a result you might see an extra seed here (especially with the Upstate NY not in the picture).  

York Wins Close One To Finalize MARC Bracket

MARC East W L T BP PTS
Villanova 5 0 0 0 20
Lehigh 4 1 0 2 18
TCNJ 2 3 0 2 10
Moravian College 1 3 1 2 8
East Stroudsburg 2 3 0 0 8
Drexel 0 4 1 0 2
           
MARC West W L T BP PTS
Shippensburg 3 1 0 3 15
York 3 1 0 2 14
Scranton 2 1 1 4 14
Bloomsburg 1 2 1 2 8
Millersville 0 4 0 0 0

So now it's into the conference playoffs. York takes on Villanova, and Shippensburg takes on Lehigh.

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