Hartpury have moved into the top four of BUCS Super Rugby after an excellent victory over Durham University.
The reigning league and cup champions have now won eight of their last nine games and they currently hold a position in the table which could give them a more favourable draw in the quarter-finals of the BUCS Championship.
The Gloucestershire side manoeuvred their way into fourth place after Nottingham Trent picked up their maiden win in BUCS Super Rugby against Leeds Beckett, but Kerry Wood’s side reacted on Friday night with a victory away at Cardiff Met.
It all means that Beckett are just a point behind Hartpury in the table with a fixture to come against second placed Northumbria on Wednesday.
Below is all the BUCS Super Rugby news plus a round-up of the latest league and cup action.
Leeds Beckett 33-50 Nottingham Trent University
Nottingham Trent University secured their first victory of the BUCS Super Rugby season as they defeated Leeds Beckett in Yorkshire.
In a first-half which ebbed and flowed, Trent were 26-21 in front at the break with tries coming via Will Cardall, Jamie Jack, Jake Farnworth and Alex Goble.
Beckett were able to muster up three converted scores in the first period, but after the interval, Trent created some breathing space as Harry Graham and David Williams crossed to give the visitors a 19-point advantage.
Leeds hit back with a bonus-point try, but a kick from Tom Miller plus a penalty try ultimately sealed a maiden win for Trent.
A close ranged try from Beckett completed this thrilling contest, but after 14 straight defeats, Trent finally tasted victory.
Cardiff Met 15-20 Leeds Beckett
After the disappointment of Wednesday night, Leeds Beckett bounced back with a crucial win away at third placed Cardiff Met University.
The victory for Beckett now leaves them a point off the top four with one game remaining in their season, but that fixture comes against title chasing Northumbria on 14th March.
Hartpury 39-16 Durham University
Hartpury went into the top four of BUCS Super Rugby as a hat-trick from Alex Forrester guided them to victory over Durham University.
The Gloucestershire side were 8-7 down after 30 minutes as Forrester’s first try was cancelled out by a Durham score and a penalty.
However, another try from Forrester and an effort from Pisano Victor gave Hartpury a 19-8 half-time lead.
Durham hit back immediately after the restart thanks to their second try of the evening, but Hartpury were then able to take the game away from their opponents.
Forrester completed his hat-trick and Sam Leeming kicked a penalty before scores from Luke Stratford and Dwayne Burrows sealed the win.
In the BUCS Super Rugby Promotion Play-Off, Cardiff University will take a commanding lead into the second leg as they comfortably beat Newcastle University 59-17 in Wales.
After their 28-14 victory over Bath 2nds in the Round of 16 on Monday, the University of Leeds were unable to back up that win in the quarter-finals of the Men’s Vase as they were on the wrong end of a walkover result against South A side USW.
The Welsh outfit will be joined by Hartpury 2nds in the last four after they clinched a 36-26 win over Exeter 2nds.
Hartpury’s opponents in this week’s semi-finals will be the University of Nottingham after they beat last year’s BUCS Super Rugby play-off finalists the University of Bristol 19-5 whilst USW face a tough test against North A champions Durham 2nds after they defeated Swansea University 43-35.
Men’s Northern Conference Cup
Manchester Metropolitan University successfully defended the Northern Conference Cup and did so in style as they thrashed neighbours Manchester 2nds 67-7 at Platt Lane. It is the second year on the spin that Rob Jones’ side have lifted silverware and now their attention turns to the Northern 2A title race between themselves and Keele University.
Men’s Midlands Conference Cup
Oxford Brookes University have won the Midlands Conference Cup after defeating Nottingham Trent 3rds 36-7. The Midlands 2B outfit are also battling away for promotion so the cup success means they already have one tick in the box.
Current holders the University of Edinburgh will take on the University of Exeter in the semi-finals after a walkover result against Oxford University. They have joined Hartpury and Northumbria University in the final four with the latter progressing to this stage of the competition thanks to a 36-10 win over Cardiff Met.
Elsewhere across BUCS
The University of Glasgow edged past the University of Manchester 26-25 to move to the top of North B after Leeds Beckett 2nds were beaten by Loughborough 3rds which put a dent in their title aims. Elsewhere, the University of St Andrews picked up a potentially vital 31-24 win over Durham 4ths.
Hartpury 3rds have been crowned the South B champions after a 45-17 victory over St Mary’s University. They beat Exeter 3rds to the title despite the South-West outfit thrashing Cardiff Met 2nds 55-10.
In Northern 1A, Durham 4ths have moved level on points with leaders the University of Sheffield following a 41-31 win over the University of Liverpool. Elsewhere in this division, the University of Hull beat Sheffield Hallam University 14-3.
Keele University have moved to the top of Northern 2A after a 22-7 win against Lancaster University on Friday night. The Staffordshire side also beat Bangor University 69-0 on Wednesday and with title rivals Manchester Met in cup action last week, Keele took full advantage. The other fixture in this league saw Liverpool 2nds seal a 38-36 win over UCLAN.
In Northern 2B, Northumbria 2nds are now two points behind league leaders Newcastle 3rds after a 34-12 victory against the University of York.
Newcastle’s fixture with Sheffield 2nds was postponed which means both North East sides have played the same amount of matches. Elsewhere, Leeds Beckett 3rds claimed the bragging rights with a 40-24 win over Leeds 2nds. Meanwhile in Northern 3B, Sheffield Hallam 2nds picked up a crucial 30-24 win over Leeds Beckett 4ths to give themselves a fighting chance of avoiding relegation.
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