Week 9 Midwest Roundup
By D3soccer.com Contributors
North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC)
The race for a North Coast championship is winding down with the Battling Bishops of Ohio Wesleyan leading the standings with one week remaining. Kenyon sits alone in second and remain potential winners of the crown, but must rely on an OWU mishap for an opening. Every point matters in a race for a top-four finish and a berth in the NCAC Tournament.
No. 17 Ohio Wesleyan (12-3-1/6-0-1) stayed undefeated after topping Oberlin (5-8-2/2-4-1) by a score of 4-1. Brian Schaefer setup the opening two goals for OWU with junior midfielder Lonnie Barnes scoring the game-winner. Highlights of the game can be watched here.
After tying OWU in their previous game, No. 7 Kenyon (13-1-1/5-1-1) thumped Hiram (7-7-2/2-3-2) by a 4-0 score. They have two games remaining to creep back into first. Watch highlights from the game here.
Denison (8-6-1/5-2-0) had the big result of the weekend when they beat Wabash (12-2-2/5-2-0) by an impressive 4-0 score. It was Senior Day for the Big Red and Evan Porter stepped up in his final home game for DU, scoring 3 goals for the hat trick. He was named NCAC Player of the Week.
Wabash beat Wittenberg (6-9-1/1-6-0) by a 2-1 tally in their other game of the week to earn the Little Giants their 12th win of the season, tying for the most in program history.
Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA)
The sixth week of conference play saw a total of four teams jockeying for three spots in the season-ending league tournament behind powerhouse Calvin, including a late entrant to the party.
Barely breaking a sweat, No. 6 Calvin (15-2/12-0) dispatched Adrian (4-12-1/1-10-1) by a 6-0 score, then followed it up with a 3-0 blanking of Trine (5-12-/2-10). Leading the way with a goal in each game was senior All American forward Travis Vegter, who now has 20 goals on the year and 64 for his career. With one week remaining in the regular season, the Knights will be looking to complete the MIAA's first unbeaten, untied season in 13 years.
Kalamazoo (9-6-2/7-4-1) and Hope (13-5/8-4) each went 1-1 for the week, with Kalamazoo taking over second place in the conference, only to see Hope regain the position by week's end. The Hornets started the week with a 2-1 overtime victory against Olivet (8-10/6-6), with freshman defender Ben Kileen scoring the unassisted winning goal just four minutes into extra time. Kalamazoo followed this up with a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to Alma (7-7-2/6-6), the only goal coming by virtue of a penalty kick.
Hope, meanwhile, lost in overtime to Albion (7-10/5-7) by a 3-2 score, but rebounded to topple Olivet 4-2. Sophomore forward Josh Hagene netted three goals on the week, and the victory was head coach Steven Smith's 350th in 25 years at Hope.
With its victory over Kalamazoo combined with a 2-1 defeat of Trine, the Alma Scots moved into a tie with Olivet for the fourth and final playoff spot. To complete the regular season, Alma travels to Hope and hosts Adrian, while Olivet hosts Adrian and travels to Calvin. As is often the case in the MIAA, playoff positions may not be locked up until the final horn sounds.
Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC)
With just one week remaining in the regular season, the race for a HCAC championship and spot in their four-team tournament has heated up.
Rose-Hulman (10-4-3/5-1-1) suffered their first loss of conference when Earlham (3-10-2/3-3-1) beat them 2-1 in overtime in their midweek game. The Engineers rebounded for an important 1-0 win over Hanover (4-9-3/2-3-2). Turner Perkins long-distance effort in the 75th minute was the difference.
With that win, RHIT sits atop the standings with Transylvania (9-5-1/5-1-1) with just two games remaining. Transy picked up two shutouts wins last week, beating Mount St. Joseph (4-12-1/2-4-1) by a 5-0 scoreline and Bluffton (5-12-0/2-5-0) by a 2-0 scoreline. Daniel Mudd had 2 goals in their win over MSJ while Taylor Nossokoff earned both shutouts as goalkeeper for the Pioneers.
Anderson (10-6-1/4-2-1) sits a game behind both RHIT and Transy after a week which saw them earn back-to-back 3-0 wins over Manchester (5-11-0/1-6-0) and Franklin (6-6-3/3-2-2). Todd Canal had a goal in both games for the Ravens.
It should be an exciting week ahead with seven teams fighting for the four places in the HCAC Tournament.
Tuesday Night Update: Transylvania beat Hanover by a 2-0 score to secure a spot in the conference tournament. The Panthers look like they will miss out on postseason play this season. Defiance suffered a 2-0 defeat to Earlham to drop below the Quakers in the standings. If they win their final game, Earlham should reach the postseason.
St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC)
The SLIAC race is extremely tight and it will be a close battle for the four spots in the conference tournament. With important games on the docket this week, it could come down to the last day before each team knows their destiny.
Webster (8-8-2/6-0-1) remain the only undefeated team in conference after securing a 1-0 win over Westminster (Mo.) (7-7-1/5-1-1) and a 3-0 win over Blackburn (6-11-0/2-5-0). The Gorloks were led by Mike Well’s two assists on the week.
Spalding (10-5-1/4-2-1) picked up a big 2-0 win over Fontbonne (7-11-0/6-1-0) to keep their playoffs hopes alive. Highlights of the game can be seen here. Abdirahman Aden scored the game-winner and earned Offensive Player of the Week honors.
Tuesday Night Update: Westminster (Mo.) beat Fontbonne by a 2-0 score behind a brace from Dustin Seibolt. This should secure a spot in the SLIAC Tournamrnt for the Blue Jays, while the Griffins will need a result on Saturday to feel safe. With that result, Webster clinched the regular season SLIAC Championship by beating Greenville 1-0 on the road. The Gorloks win over Westminster earlier in the season means they win the crown regardless of their result on Saturday. Greenville, meanwhile, must win on Saturday and hope Spalding drops points in their final two games to earn a tourney bid.
Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC)
John Carroll remains unbeaten atop the OAC standings after winning their 12th game in a row over the weekend. The final conference games will be played this weekend.
John Carroll (15-3-0/8-0-0) jumped out to a 3-1 first half lead over Capital (9-7-1/4-3-1) as Brian Potocnik scored his 15 and 16th goals of the year. Capital scored early in the second half to make the game interesting but JCU was able to hold on for the win. JCU had a high scoring affair against Mount Union (7-10-0/1-7-0). Both teams combined for six first half goals and two second half goals in the 5-3 thriller. Brian Potocnik scored his 17th and 18th goals of the year. JCU’s Brian Potocnik has had a stellar season and should be a contender for OAC Offensive POY. JCU held Mount Union to 3 goals on 5 shots while JCU tallied 5 goals on 13 shots.
Heidelberg (9-6-3/5-2-1) beat Marietta (5-10/3-4) 1-0 in the first OT period on a goal from Christopher Kozcak. Heidelberg controlled the run of play and was rewarded with the game-winning goal in the 98th minute. Heidelberg won its second match of the weekend after beating Capital (9-7-1/4-3-1) 3-1. Alexis Mendoza opened the scoring for Heidelberg in the 38th minute and took the 1-0 advantage into half time. Capital equalized early in the half on Calvin Saunders nifty finish. Heidelberg scored two unanswered goals to earn a 3-1 victory. Alexis Mendoza scored his 7th goal of the season in the 67th minute for Heidelberg.
Ohio Northern (11-7-1/4-3-1) beat Muskingum (5-12/1-6) 2-1 as David Janusz scored the game-wining goal three minutes from full time. ONU’s Dustin Lorenzo put the Polar Bears up 1-0 in the 13th minute only to see the game tied as Christopher Heine scored his first goal of the year for Muskingum. ONU played a tight match with Baldwin-Wallace (8-10-1/4-3-1) that resulted in a 2-1 win for BWU. The Polar Bears opened the scoring in the 15th minute as Chase Mueller scored off a deflection. Ben Deighton scored in the 24th and 69th minutes to give Baldwin-Wallace the big conference victory.
Tuesday Night Update: Baldwin-Wallace earned a huge 2-1 win over Ohio Northern to take a big step towards earning a spot in the OAC Tournament. Marietta upset Otterbein 1-0 and Heidelberg upset Capital 3-1 to mix things up in the conference standings. It will be a tight race for all six spots.
Southern Athletic Association (SAA)
Millsaps took the top spot in the SAA standings and Birmingham Southern sits second going in to the final weekend of games. All eight teams qualify for the SAA Tournament, so this final weekend will line-up the seedings for the conference tourney.
Millsaps (11-5/5-1) went a perfect 2-0 on the weekend as they beat Sewanee (5-9-1/2-3-1) by a score of 4-2 and Centre (7-3-5/3-1-2) by a score of 2-1. The Majors jumped out to a 3-0 halftime lead on two goals from Lukas Elmhammer and never looked back as they beat Sewanee on the road. Millsaps continued it’s stellar play by defeating The Colonels of Centre 2-1. Millsaps opened the scoring in the 55th minute as Niko Roth collected a ball and put it away for the 1-0 lead. Javier Garcia scored to give the Majors a 2-0 with 8 minutes to play. Christian Gateskill got one back but it wasn’t enough to tie the match.
Centre had previously defeated then first-place Birmingham-Southern (10-3-1/4-2) 1-0 on a goal from Connor Reed in the 41st minute. BSC rebounded to win their second weekend match 4-3 over Sewanee. The Panthers got all four goals from Bastian Jedliczka.
Oglethorpe (7-9-1/2-4) got two much needed wins over the weekend as they beat Rhodes (6-6-3/3-1-2) 1-0 and Hendrix (3-13-1/0-6) 3-0. Oglethorpe got the game-winning goal in the 54th minute as Micah Akin, Head Coach Jon Akin’s son, scored his first goal of the season. The Stormy Petrels notched their second consecutive win by scoring three second-half goals to beat Hendrix 3-0. Oglethorpe got goals from Martin Edelman, Nick Muntean and Eyal Schechter.
Midwest Conference (MWC)
Knox clinched its first Midwest Conference championship while Lake Forest remains in second place followed by five other teams are still clinging to hope that they can get into the four-team postseason tournament in what should be a wild final week of the Midwest Conference season.
Knox (13-2-0/8-0-0) championship-clincher was a 1-0 double-overtime victory over St. Norbert in Galesburg. Saturday’s victory over the Green Knights was Knox’s 12th in a row and ran their record to 13-2-0 and 8-0-0 in MWC play. The Prairie Fire will serve as the host of the Midwest Conference Tournament on Nov. 7-8.
Despite being idle last week, Lake Forest (6-9-2/5-2-2) is still clinging to second place in the league. The Foresters host Knox on Saturday in what will be a critical game for the hosts.
Carroll (7-7-2/5-2-1), Illinois College (9-5-2/5-2-1), and Monmouth (7-9-1/5-3-1) are all tied for third place with 16 points. The Blueboys scored a huge victory over Carroll on Saturday not only to climb back into the race, but for tiebreaking purposes as well. The Fighting Scots have just one more opportunity to pick up points, which could prove costly as Carroll and Illinois both have two. Monmouth travels to Beloit (2-13-0/2-6-0) on Saturday, while Carroll hosts Beloit on Wednesday and travels to St. Norbert College on Saturday. Illinois College travels to first place Knox on Wednesday, before hosting Cornell College on Saturday.
Grinnell (7-3-5/3-2-2) and St. Norbert (9-4-3/3-2-3) are going to need to win both of their final two games and get a lot of help. The Green Knights host Ripon (2-13-1/0-8-0) on Wednesday and travel to third-place Carroll on Saturday. The Pioneers have Cornell (3-11-2/1-6-1) and Ripon still remaining on the schedule.
Other notable performances . . .
From around the Midwest
• Thomas More (14-2-1/6-0-1) are unbeaten in PAC play, having won their last five in a row. Their final regular season contest is at home against Grove City, which will determine the regular season champion and host for the conference tournament.
"Outside the Area"
• Montclair State (15-3-0/8-0-0) has won their last eleven games and looks poised for another run in the postseason as they have already secured the regular season NJAC crown. The Red Hawks will look to finish out the regular season with a win in a tough road contest at Rutgers-Newark.
Games to Watch . . .
Check out these games from around the Midwest this week:
Wednesday, October 29
No. 6 Calvin at Albion
No. 17 Ohio Wesleyan at Denison
Illinois College at Knox
Franklin at Manchester
DePauw at Wabash
Alma at Hope
Elmhurst at North Park
Anderson at Rose-Hulman
Thursday, October 30
Spalding at Principia
Friday, October 31
No. 5 Brandeis at Washington U.
Rochester at No.21 Emory
Marietta at Ohio Northern
Case Western Reserve at Carnegie Mellon
UW-Platteville at UW-Whitewater
Saturday, November 1
No. 12 Wheaton (Ill.) at North Park (Ill.)
No. 7 Kenyon at Oberlin
No. 17 Ohio Wesleyan at Hiram
Fontbonne at Webster
Hendrix at Birmingham-Southern
Oglethorpe at Centre
Grove City at Thomas More
Earlham at Franklin
Hanover at Defiance
Muskingum at John Carroll
Carthage at Elmhurst
Anderson at Transylvania
Rhodes at Millsaps