Men's Soccer Headed To Williams For NESCAC Quarters
October 31, 2013
After marching through the regular season with an 8-0-2 mark, Amherst has secured the top seed and home field advantage throughout the 2013 NESCAC Men’s Soccer Championship. When quarterfinal action starts on Saturday, November 2, the Lord Jeffs will have a home game along with Wesleyan, Williams and Tufts. The highest remaining seed following Saturday’s action will host the semifinals and final on November 9-10.
Two-time defending champion Amherst (12-0-2, 8-0-2 NESCAC) wrapped up the regular season with a 4-0 win at Trinity to carry a 34-game unbeaten streak into the post-season, where the Lord Jeffs are in search of their fourth overall title. Amherst has not allowed more than one goal in a game this season, having outscored its opponents 32-6. The team has benefited from balanced scoring, as 12 different players have tallied goals. The Lord Jeffs will face Hamilton (5-6-3, 3-4-3) in the quarterfinals. Earlier this season, the teams played to a 1-1 draw at Hamilton. The Continentals clinched their first-ever NESCAC Championship berth in dramatic fashion, defeating Williams, 2-1, this afternoon in a must-win situation. Hamilton heads into Saturday peaking at the right time of year after winning three of its last four games.
Wesleyan (8-5-1, 7-3-0 NESCAC) secured the second seed following a 1-0 overtime victory over Connecticut College today. The Cardinals have become familiar with tight contests this season, as they have played in nine 1-0 decisions with a record of 6-3. Wesleyan, which won its only NESCAC title in 2005, has registered seven shutouts this season. Its opening round game will be a match-up of this afternoon’s regular season finale, as the Cardinals square off against Connecticut College (8-4-2, 4-4-2) in Middletown. The Camels won four of their last six conference games to overcome a 0-2-2 start to earn the seventh seed. The programs have never met in the NESCAC Championship.
Williams (9-5-0, 6-4-0 NESCAC) and Tufts (8-5-1, 6-4-0 NESCAC) ended the regular season tied for the third seed, but the Ephs win the tiebreaker courtesy of a 2-1 win over the Jumbos on October 19. Williams, which is in search of its league-best seventh title and first crown since 2009, has posted six shutouts this season and is 7-4 in one-goal contests with two of those losses coming in double overtime. The Ephs will face sixth-seed Middlebury (9-4-1, 5-4-1 NESCAC) in the ninth conference tournament meeting between the programs. The series is tied at 2-4-2 with the most recent meeting taking place in 2009 when Williams won the league title, 2-1, in overtime. Williams won this season’s head-to-head meeting, 2-1, on October 1. The Panthers had a five-game winning streak come to an end last Saturday following a 1-0 loss at Wesleyan. Middlebury has had historical success in its opening round matches, posting a 12-1 record with the lone loss coming last year to Amherst in a 4-0 result. The Panthers have won three conference titles, most recently in 2010.
The remaining quarterfinal will also be a rematch of a regular season finale, as fourth-seeded Tufts and fifth-seeded Bowdoin (8-3-3, 5-3-2 NESCAC) will square off for the second time in four days for the second straight year. The Jumbos earned the right to host with a 1-0 win over the Polar Bears Tuesday afternoon. Tufts started out the season with three shutouts en route to finishing the season with nine. Defense is critical for the Jumbos, as they are 0-5-0 when they allow a goal. The Polar Bears rebounded from a 0-2-2 league start by closing out the schedule 5-1-0. Bowdoin saw its 10-game unbeaten streak come to an end against Tufts in the regular season finale. Tufts prevailed in the only NESCAC Championship meeting between the programs, 3-1, last season. Both sides are in search of their first conference crown.
Results for the NESCAC Men’s Soccer Championship will be available at the completion of each day on the NESCAC website.
2013 NESCAC MEN’S SOCCER CHAMPIONSHIP
Saturday, November 2 at Higher Seeds
#8 Hamilton at #1 Amherst – 12:30 pm
#7 Connecticut College at #2 Wesleyan – 12:30 pm
#6 Middlebury at #3 Williams – 1 pm
#5 Bowdoin at #4 Tufts – 1:30 pm
Saturday, November 9 at Highest Remaining Seed
Semifinal Games - 11:00 am | 1:30 pm
Highest Remaining Seed vs. Lowest Remaining Seed
Remaining Quarterfinal Winners
Sunday, November 10
Championship – 12:00 pm