The Mid-Atlantic Sees Teams Set Up Championship Appearances

A big weekend landed some big results in the Mid-Atlantic.

Men's Division I
With the regular season coming to an end last weekend, the Division I semifinals saw the Norfolk Blues and Rocky Gorge dominate their opponents by a combined score of 115-12. The Blues rocked Potomac, 48-5, while Gorge thumped Pittsburgh, 67-7. It will be the second MAC Final in the past three years for Norfolk and Gorge on Saturday.

Both head coaches are always looking for ways to improve their teams even this late in the season. "Hard work and getting everyone out to training has paid off," Norfolk's Chris Porter said. [We have been] playing our game [all] spring and continue to get better each match." On the other side, Gorge's Nick DiMichele stated, "[The key was] attacking off the set piece and our backs connecting the dots. We need to be better at the breakdown and more disciplined on defense [against the Blues]."

Men's Division II
The Division II quarterfinals commenced on Saturday and undefeated Doylestown passed the century mark against Norfolk, 134-0. Head coach Mike McCandless is proud of his team's play saying, "We have had a really strong, improved backline but we added a couple of key players and a few stepped up their game in the forward pack. A lot of it is the team coming together, gelling, and working together on the field."

In the remaining quarterfinal tests, #2 seed NOVA clobbered Old Gaelic, 80-26; #6 Philadelphia-Whitemarsh knocked off the Division I-B champ Rocky Gorge, 57-14; and Raleigh edged Lancaster, 22-21, in the #4 versus #5 matchup.

The semifinal pairings this Saturday consist of Doylestown against Raleigh and NOVA taking on Philly-Whitemarsh. The winning teams will battle on Sunday to see who advances to Regionals in Columbus. 

Men's Division III

After a brilliant season, #1 seed Phoenixville White Horse entered its first postseason 10-0 and beat the Washington Irish, 38-14, in the Division III quarterfinals. Speaking with coach Eion Beck, he said, "Our success this season has been the byproduct of the work and effort our players and coaches have put in over the last year... We have 30+ players all working become better rugby players and a coaching staff that has constantly challenged our players to raise their rugby IQ."

White Horse will be tested in semifinals by North Bay, who clipped Wilkes-Barre, 25-22, in its quarterfinal. The second semifinal pits Western Suburbs against Virginia. Suburbs dispatched James River, 20-10, while Virginia outscored Reading, 36-27. The Saturday semifinal winners move onto the championship on Sunday.

Women's Division II
Chesapeake booked its ticket to the MAC semifinals after blanking James River, 83-0. With the win, Chesapeake draws #1 overall seed Doylestown this weekend and Harrisburg plays Phoenixville White Horse in the second semifinal. The championship final between the winners is on Sunday.

Women's Division III
In the last regular season match of Division III, NOVA notched its sixth win of the season over Frederick, 27-22. NOVA will lock horns with NE Philadelphia in the semifinals and the Maryland Stingers play Philadelphia before Sunday's final.