BUCS Rugby Union: Titles and trophies

Leeds Beckett top the Premier North A
Leeds Beckett top the Premier North A
©Leeds Beckett Twitter

It's that time of the year where BUCS Rugby sees who's riding high, and who's struggled with the weight of expectation in their respective leagues...

The league season is drawing to an end, some leagues are done and dusted, others see next Wednesday as a decider. Congratulations to Leeds Beckett Carnegie 1sts on securing the Premier North A title, away at Durham.

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Premier South A
League leaders Exeter stayed top of the table this week after beating Cardiff University 1sts 45-20. It means they are four points clear at the top of the table with one game remaining of their season. Exeter have won 10 of their 11 matches this season and now know if they avoid defeat to fourth place Bath University 1sts next week they will be champions. Exeter have beaten Bath in five of the last seven meetings between the sides.
Bath travelled to Cardiff Met 1sts and returned across the Severn Bridge having lost 27-7. All to play for in Exeter next Wednesday.
Second place Hartpury 1sts went top for an hour or so on Wednesday as they beat six placed Bristol 1sts 7-31. Hartpury know that Exeter need to draw or lose next week if they are to stand any chance of claiming the title. They host bottom side Swansea 1sts next Wednesday who they beat 12-48 earlier in the season.

Premier North A
On to the Northern section and Leeds Beckett travelled to Durham for an evening kick off. A tight game, finishing with a two point win for Leeds Beckett. This gave the team from Leeds the title for a second year.
The University of Leeds picked up only their second victory of the season as they beat relegation rivals Nottingham 1sts 27-15 at Sports Park Westwood. This was Leeds’s second win in just 11 games and it all means that Leeds are out of drop zone and are just clear of Nottingham.
Leeds also have one more game to play against Leeds Beckett in two weeks’ time, but the bad news for Leeds is that Nottingham have two more games to play which means that Leeds are not safe just yet. This may well go down to the wire.
Newcastle University weren’t in action this week and the fifth place side take on Durham 1sts next week.

Premier North B
Nottingham Trent University 1sts have ended a run of one win in six matches as they thrashed Manchester University 1sts 64-3 at the Clifton Grass Pitches. They stay fourth with this win with three league games remaining. They won this league last season, but it looks unlikely that they will defend it now. Trent will be hoping for a repeat performance next week as they host Manchester again in the last 16 of the cup.
As for Manchester, they are fifth in the table after this defeat and are six points clear of the relegation zone. Manchester have lost all four games in 2015 after losing just once in nine matches before the turn of the year.

Northern 1A
The University of Liverpool’s fixture against Leeds Beckett 2nds was postponed last week and they weren’t in action this week either. They take on Newcastle 2nds in six days’ time who they have beaten on the last three occasions. Liverpool have won six of their last 10 matches in Northern 1A which sees them in second place. However, they are 13 points off league leaders and probable champions the University of Sheffield.
One game did take place and saw Durham 3s beat Lancaster 1st by 39 to 7.

Northern 2A
League leaders Manchester Met remain unbeaten in Northern 2A and stay top of the division after defeating city rivals Manchester University 2nds 24-6 at the Armitage Site. They have now won all seven of their league games and with just three games left (including a title showdown with Keele 1sts in two weeks’ time) they are certainly the side to beat. MMU have beaten Keele on the last two occassions.
Third placed UCLan suffered at the hands of Keele this week as they were beaten 26-0 away from home. UCLan have won just three times in their seven matches this season and haven’t won away from home since October when they beat Liverpool 2nds. They will be hoping to get their revenge on Keele in the reverse fixture next week.  
And finally Edge Hill, who were narrowly beaten 35-38 at home by Liverpool 2nds this week. The Merseyside outfit have now leapfrogged them into fourth place. Edge Hill have won just two of their seven matches this season and have lost their last three games, but turn their attention to their Quarter-Final cup tie with Northumbria 2nds next week.

Midlands 2A
Nottingham Trent 2nds lost ground in the title race as they lost 15-29 to Warwick 2nds this week. Trent have now played one more game than league leaders Coventry 1sts who now have an eight point lead at the top. Trent have won six of their eight matches this season and now have just two fixtures left of the season. Next week they host city rivals the University of Nottingham 4ths before travelling to Coventry on the final day of the season.  
Coventry beat Warwick 3rds 5-58 this week and know one more win will secure them the title next week.