The AASE rankings play offs took place today, a day before the final, at Allianz Park, with 3rd to 12th place all to be contested.
While the AASE world’s attention will turn to Hartpury College v Gosforth Academy at 4.15pm tomorrow (you can see our preview of that game here, including team news: AASE Final Preview), today the focus was very much on the rest of the league.
The rankings play-off format saw sides from the North facing their Southern counterparts. So Exeter College, who finished second in the South Division 1, faced Oaklands College, second in North Division 1, in the third place play off.
It turned out to be a glorious day for the Southern Conference, who secured a clean sweep of victories against the Northern Conference, winning every single play off final.
The games were hosted across Stourbridge RFC and Hornets RFC, with Stourbridge hosting the 3rd, 5th, and 7th place play offs, while Hornets hosted the 9th and 11th place play offs as well as a friendly between Truro College and Ivybridge Community College.
Reigning champions Exeter College secured third place, beating Oaklands College 22-17 in one of the closest games of the day. They will have been gutted not to have a shot at retaining their title at Allianz Park, but a third place finish is still a strong achievement in one of the AASE League’s toughest years.
St Paul’s Catholic College sealed 5th place in style with a 50-17 win over Worcester 6th form College, while Henley College were equally good as they beat Brooksby Melton College 48-12 for 7th place. Brooksby should take heart from their 8th place finish though, a fine achievement in their first year in the competition.
Up at Hornets RFC Beechen Cliff claimed 9th place in a thriller against Myerscough College, winning it 52-32, surely the game of the day. The 11th place play off was closer, at 22-14, but against went the way of the South, with SGS Filton College beating Bishop Burton College. Truro College beat Ivybridge Community College 30-17 in their friendly.
It was a storming day for the South then, who have dominated the play off stage of this year’s league. The big question is though, will the pattern continue at Allianz Park on Wednesday afternoon, or can Gosforth Academy buck the trend and topple Hartpury College?
AASE Play Off Results:
SGS Filton College 22-14 Bishop Burton College (11th Place Play Off)
Beechen Cliff 52-32 Myerscough College (9th Place Play Off)
Truro College 30-7 Ivybridge Community College (Friendly)
St Paul’s Catholic College 50-17 Worcester 6th form College (5th Place Play Off)
Exeter College 22-17 Oaklands College (3rd Place Play Off)
Henley College 48-12 Brooksby Melton College (7th Place Play off)
AASE 2017 Rankings:
3 – Exeter College
4 – Oaklands College
5 – St Paul’s Catholic College
6 – Worcester 6th form College
7 – Henley College
8 – Brooksby Melton College
9 – Beechen Cliff
10 – Myerscough College
11 – SGS Filton College
12 – Bishop Burton College