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The Sideline Whisperer
The Sideline Whisperer
Predictions for Saturday, March 7th, 2015
With only a few games remaining in the regular season, The Sideline Whisperer takes a look at this weekend's great and not-so-great matchups.

Picture by Angie Pachcinski.

Posted on 3/5/2015 5:30:30 PM

Florida Rugby Union Men
Division 2
2017-18 Season
Florida Rugby Union Men
Division 3
2017-18 Season
Florida Rugby Union Women Division 2
2017-18 Season

The Sideline Whisperer is a member of the Florida Rugby Community that makes predictions for the Men's D2/D3 Championships and the Women's D2. Occasionally he may take on other topics. He has decided to remain anonymous. (And it's not me!). Thanks and enjoy!

-- Carlos "Charlee" Velázquez
Rugby in Florida CEO.





Three games to go (for most teams), and plenty still to play for in Florida D2 and D3 rugby.

In D2, only five of the eight teams still have a shot at the playoffs, as Miami, Naples and Tampa are all but eliminated, barring a miracle. Boca, despite its first loss of the season last week in Orlando, remains in first place with 30 points, with Fort Lauderdale only three points behind. The two teams will play each other on March 21 in what should be a doozy. Behind those two, it's Jacksonville and Orlando tied at 24 points, and Miami Tridents a further five points back. The Tridents have won their last three games to vault into playoff contention, and play league bottom-dwellers twice in their final three contests. It's going to be a great race to the finish, with one of those five teams getting their hearts broken.

Meanwhile, in D3, three teams have distanced themselves from the others, as Palm Beach, Gainesville and Daytona have a nine-point cushion over the next team, Brevard, with Sarasota and the Pelicans still in the mix.

Time for me to try and bounce back from a rough, rainy column last week.

Division II

Jacksonville (5-2, 24 pts) at Boca Raton (6-1, 30 pts): A very very interesting matchup to start things off here, as Jax make their THIRD trip of the season to South Florida and second in as many weeks. Not sure how that's fair, but hey, I don't make the schedule. Anyway, Jax lost 30-15 to the surging Tridents last week and play them again, along with a road to trip to Orlando, to close out the season. They probably can't afford to go worse than 2-1 in those games if they want to keep the Tridents at bay for the fourth playoff spot. The Buccaneers, meanwhile, were handed their first loss of the season last weekend at Orlando, and then had to play the Argentinian touring side Asociacion Alumni on Sunday. How much did that 48-hour period take out of them? I think the fact they're at home will help balance things out a little, but the Bucs will surely be sore heading into Saturday. I will take the home team, but only just. Boca Raton 24, Jacksonville 20

Orlando (5-2, 24 pts) at Miami (1-5, 8 pts): Orlando is 0-2 on the road against teams in the top five this season, having lost heavily at the Tridents and narrowly in Jacksonville. However, they have also beaten the top two sides in Boca and Lauderdale. This trip worries me a little because they're coming off a big win over Boca, and thanks to the schedule maker, play Miami again in a couple of weeks. Miami's season is pretty much over unless Tampa can somehow knock off the Tridents across the state on Saturday, but they have been competitive in the majority of their losses. For some reason I smell an upset in this contest. Miami 20, Orlando 17

Miami Tridents (4-3, 19 pts) at Tampa Krewe (0-7, 1 pt): The Tridents have come from an 0-2 start to win four of their last five games and put themselves in prime position to pick up a postseason berth thanks to the fact they play winless Krewe twice in their final three games. Yes, the other game is a daunting trip north to Jacksonville, but the 305 crew could prove their poor road history is a thing of the past with a win in this one. It won't be easy, as Tampa have nothing to lose at this point and will looking to play spoiler, and there will be the temptation to look ahead to that massive contest in a couple of weeks. I like the Tridents to continue their momentum. Tridents 30, Tampa Krewe 19

Fort Lauderdale (5-2, 27 pts) at Naples (1-5, 5 pts): Fort Lauderdale 50, Naples 7

Division II

Tallahassee (1-3, 6 pts) at Indian River (0-5, 0 pts): Could this be the week Indian River finally wins an FRU game? Nope. The Conquistadors need a win to keep their slim playoff hopes alive and will get it without much bother. Tallahassee 42, Indian River 5

Tampa Krewe (0-5, 0 pts) at Brevard (3-2, 15 pts): Brevard easily holds on to their playoff spot in a rout. Brevard 49, Tampa 5

Bay Area Pelicans (2-2, 11 pts) at Daytona (4-1-1, 24 pts): A third straight snoozer this week. The Coconuts will be angry after losing to Gainesville last week, and the Pelicans' fraudulent two-game win streak will come to an end in heavy fashion. Daytona 52, Pelicans 10 

Palm Beach (5-0, 25 pts) at Sarasota (1-2-1, 11 pts): Ooh, finally something worth writing more than a couple of sentences about. Before the season, one might have expected these two teams to be battling for home field advantage in this game. However, the Surge have been more like the Purge this season, with just one win to their name so far. Another loss here and it could be lights out for them, although they should win their three remaining games easily against Tampa, Pelicans and Tallahassee. Palm Beach have looked unstoppable so far in 2015, but have only a one-point edge over Gainesville and Brevard. They do have a game in hand, however, and a victory here would be a major step on the way to a No. 1 seed. Have to like the Panthers with the momentum. Palm Beach 30, Sarasota 24

Last Week: 3-3
This Season: 34-14-1 (69.4%)
All Time: 135-48-1 (73.4%)

Code updated: 02/07/2018 13:04

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