Friday, May 5, 2017

Rocky Mountain Playoffs

Playoffs: Round the Region, Round the Globe
*     WD-1: At Infinity, Glendale Raptors Women square off against Black Ice this Saturday on the StoveTop, 1pm;
*     MD-2: In St Louis, Denver Barbarians and Glendale Raptors each lost to St. Louis Bombers in St. Louis on the weekend knockouts: Barbarians on Saturday in a 65-minute match, 12-22 and Glendale on Sunday, 3-29;
*     MD-3: Denver Highlanders topped the D-3 league handily, and were successful in their first playoff match v St. Louis Hornets, but Highlanders were beaten by Wichita Barbarians, 39-7, subsequent to their win past the Stingers in the first weekend of the USA Rugby national playoff schedule and ‘Landers, also, returned home to stay;
*     Rugby Colorado: The three top clubs in Rugby Colorado’s Premier League all show one loss on the table, having each beaten one of the others during the season. In the quarterfinal rounds, current number one, Monarch, who beat Palmer High Terrors (2016 D-2 titlists), lost to Denver East; they’ll play PAC at Williams Rugby Field in Superior; Denver East, who beat Monarch but lost to Terrors, go up against Chaparral Wolverines at Heaven on the Angels homeground; and Palmer, who beat East but lost to Monarch, host Aurora Saracens at the Garry Berry Rugby Stadium. All three fixtures are on this (Friday/tonight) evening. The other quarterfinal pits 2016 and reigning RC champs, Regis Jesuit Raiders, against Colorado Springs Grizzlies, 11am Saturday morning on the Jesuit campus.

European Professional Rugby:
*       o       Orange Top 14  - La Rochelle have claimed la number one seed after breathtaking, 41-38, joy over Montpellier Herault last weekend; they’ll travel to current #2 on the table, Clermont Auvergne, this upcoming final weekend of the season, but the outcome won’t really matter to travelers as taken the league already; however, big match for Clermont as a win will ensure a first round bye, while a loss may mean they’ll be playing in the initial knockout weekend;
*    Aviva PremiershipExeter Chiefs have overtaken Wasps, who have fronted the table since December; third place Saracens have decided to rest a passel of name players for their last league match v Wasps at Coventry, which means that the defending champions are willing to chance losing their shot at a home Premiership semifinal to ensure they’ve a full fit roster for the European Professional Club Rugby Championship match v Clermont in Edinburgh later this month, 5.13;
*     Guinness Pro12: Semifinals are shaping up as an Ireland-Wales playoffs scenario with Welsh clubs Ospreys and Scarlets versus Irish Provinces Leinster and Munster; Ulster have a shot at claiming the last extra-time berth, but they’ll have to get five from their upcomer v Leinster in Kingspan at Ravenhill this Saturday - an occurrence unlikely – and also, Munster must lose their final league fixture at home v Connacht on that day;

*      European Professional Club Rugby: Champions Cup: Clermont v Saracens in Edinburgh on the 13th of May promises to be a cracker. Each side have a raft of injured players and it remains to be seen whether they’ll rehab in time for kickoff at Murrayfield a week on Saturday.

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