(ISN) – BOULDER, Colo. – The dates and locations for the 2015 USA Rugby Club National Championships have been announced.
Ray Sheeran Field at Treasure Island in San Francisco and Rugby Athletic Center and Skillbeck Athletic Grounds in Charlotte will host the Western and Eastern Regionals, respectively, May 30-31 before finalists from Men’s Division I, Men’s Division II, Men’s Division III, Women’s Division I, and Women’s Division II converge on Infinity Park in Glendale, Colo., for the National Championships June 13-14.
“We’re very excited to bring the national playoffs to these quality venues,” USA Rugby Club Department Manager Erik Geib said. “San Francisco is the historic heart of American rugby, and the Carolinas are a rugby hotbed on the rise with Charlotte at the heart of things. Further, Infinity Park is a world-class facility that has fittingly labeled itself Rugbytown USA.”
The Northern California Rugby Football Union will host the Western Regionals at the home of San Francisco Golden Gate, which won the inaugural Elite Cup competition at Infinity Park in 2013. Ray Sheeran Field was also the site of five consecutive Club 7s National Championships from 2008 and the 2010 Rugby Super League Final between New York Athletic Club and San Francisco Golden Gate.
The top-ranked club in the Men’s DI Pacific North conference will face off against the second-ranked Red River competitor, with the Pacific South and Red River conference champions in the other DI pairing. The remaining four divisions in San Francisco will also feature the latter matchup, as well as the Pacific North and Frontier champions in a clash.
The winners of the May 30 matchups will meet May 31 to decide which club will earn a place in their respective Finals in Glendale against their Eastern opponents.
Rugby Athletic Center and Charlotte Rugby will host the Eastern Regionals at the two facilities in North Carolina. Day-one matches will be split between each pitch before the winners advancing to the elimination matches book Rugby Athletic Center exclusively.
This will be the first national USA Rugby event held in the city of Charlotte, which has been home to regional championships like the 2014 Southern Conference Club Playoffs over the years.
The Midwest champion will take on the Atlantic North table topper in each of the five divisions, while the South and Mid-Atlantic conference champions will compete for day-one supremacy in the Men’s DII and DIII and Women’s DII divisions. The American Rugby Premiership’s second-best team – decided following season’s end May 9 – will drop down to the Men’s DI bracket to battle the Mid-Atlantic champion. The Women’s DI Mid-Atlantic champion will play the second-place Midwest club.
Breese Stevens Field in Madison, Wisc., hosted the 2014 USA Rugby Club National Championships, where Life University, Oregon Sports Union, Rocky Gorge, Pittsburgh Angels, and Old Blue of New York were crowned champions against the capital city’s backdrop.
Infinity Park, which hosted the 2013 USA Rugby Men’s Club National Championships, will see three new champions take home hardware from the June 13-14 weekend. ORSU moved up to the Women’s Premier League and Pittsburgh Angels is competing in DI the year following its DII championship. Old Blue of New York also looked to raise its game by leaving DIII for DII on the men’s side.
“Last year’s Men’s DI Final saw the highest attendance for any club 15s match in the United States, and we look forward to repeating the feat again this year,” Geib said. “The Women’s DI Final saw the highest attendance in that championship’s history, and we hope to break that record again.”
The announced venues for the 2015 USA Rugby Club National Championships follows the announcement of the location of the 2015 USA Rugby College 7s National Championships. Follow the National Championship Series conversation on social media with the #NCS2015 hashtag.
Western Regionals | Men’s Divisions I, II, III / Women’s Divisions I, II
May 30-31, 2015
Ray Sheeran Field at Treasure Island – San Francisco, Calif.
Host: Northern California Rugby Football Union
Matchups: Pacific North v. Frontier (*Men’s DI: Pacific North v. Red River #2)
Pacific South v. Red River
Eastern Regionals | Men’s Divisions I, II, III / Women’s Divisions I, II
May 30-31, 2015
Rugby Athletic Center & Skillbeck Athletic Grounds – Charlotte, N.C.
Hosts: Rugby Athletic Center & Charlotte Rugby
Matchups: Midwest v. Atlantic North
South vs. Mid-Atlantic (*Men’s DI: American Premiership #2 v. Mid Atlantic; *Women’s DI: Midwest #2 v. Mid-Atlantic)
National Championships | Men’s Divisions I, II, III / Women’s Divisions I, II
June 13-14, 2015
Infinity Park – Glendale, Colo.
Host: City of Glendale
Matchups: Western Champion v. Eastern Champion