The Furman men’s rugby team will face Sacred Heart University 11 a.m. Saturday at Roberts Field in the South Regional of USA Rugby Men’s Division II Round of 16 Tournament.
Champions of the Southern Rugby Conference, Furman is 10-0 this fall. Sacred Heart (Connecticut) are champions of the Tri-State Conference. In the other game Saturday, North Carolina State University will square off against Southern Connecticut University at 1 p.m.
The winners of Saturday’s games will advance to the South Regional Finals noon Sunday with a chance to advance to the USA Rugby Men’s Div. II Final Four, which will be hosted by Furman Dec. 3-4. The losers of Saturday’s games will play each other 10 a.m., Sunday in a consolation match.
Furman is ranked 3rd in the country by Goff Rugby Report while Sacred Heart enters the contest ranked 12th. N.C. State and Southern Connecticut are ranked 5th and 17th consecutively.
Furman captured Div. III national championships in 2003, 2004, 2005 and finished runner up in 2007 and 2008. The Paladins moved up to Div. II in 2010 and finished the 2014 season as Southern Rugby Conference Champions and ranked sixth in the nation. Furman narrowly missed the play-offs in 2015.
Should Furman claim the DII title, they would be the first program to capture both Div. III and Div. II national championships.
See the complete brackets