September 29, 2011

Week 5 Flybys, midweek edition

By Christan Shirk

In what may or may not become a regular feature, we will run down a whole host of results from across the nation, "flybys" if you will, with brief comments that hopefully are informative, insightful, and interesting.  The intent is to give snapshots of the enitre D-III soccer landscape, covering important high profile matches but also going off the beaten path as much as possible as we criss-cross the country.


Monday, September 26

Anna Maria 2, Eastern Nazarene 1 – The victory was the first in 2011 for Anna Maria (1-8-1) who found their match in Eastern Nazarene (1-8-0).

New York Univ. 3, Hunter 0 – After terrible start to season, NYU (4-3-1) wins third straight heading into conference play.

Bethel 0, Northwestern (Minn.) 0 (2OT) – Bethel (6-1-2) had already doubled their win total from 2010, but they will have few better chances to add to that tally than this one.

Wheaton (Ill.) 5, Occidental 1 – The Thunder (4-5-1) snapped their four game losing streak, but it's all about winning the CCIW now that they have played themselves out of an at-large berth by the end of September for the second straight year.


Tuesday, September 27

Trine 2, Calvin 0 – In MIAA action, yet undefeated Trine (7-0-2) notch their 8th straight shutout to maintain the nation's best GAA (0.11), snapping Calvin's 5-game win streak in the process.  This sets up a top of the table clash on Saturday with the MIAA's surprise leader, Olivet (8-1-1).  Calvin (7-3-0) still hard to figure out in 2011.

Olivet 2, Hope 1 (OT) – It took a game-tying goal 2:17 from time to set-up Olivet (8-1-1) for the OT winner, but they stay perfect (4-0) in the MIAA and stay on track to improve on a program best 12-7-1 season in 2010.  After just four winning seasons in the previous 33 years, Olivet's coach Chad Wiseman should land his third winning season in as many tries since taking over the reins in 2009.  Defending MIAA champ Hope slips to 2-2-3.

Cancelled: No. 5 Trinity (Texas) 4, Mary Hardin-Baylor 0 – It doesn't count, but Trinity (5-0-2) was all over Mary Hardin-Baylor (5-0-1) in the 30 minutes before lightening forced the game to be cancelled.  It would have been MHB's first loss of the season.  Not sure who this half hour tells us more about: highly ranked Trinity or MHB who had moved closer to the Top 25 in the latest rankings.

Northland 1, North Central 0 – At last!  In securing their first victory of the season, Northland (1-8-0) also snapped a 25-game losing streak dating back to their second match of 2010.  The win came despite being outshot 16 to 8 and only putting five on target to North Central’s 13 attempts that required saving.

DePauw 1, Anderson 0 (OT) - Not sure how a fifth win, second requiring overtime, over a .500 or worse HCAC school is impressive, but if the first four helped get DePauw (8-1-0) ranked No. 21 another can’t hurt, right?

No. 17 Ohio Northern 4, Thomas More 3 (2OT) – After a fast 6-0 start, Ohio Northern (8-2-1) has struggled and it took a late comeback and overtime to send Thomas More (6-1-1) to their first loss on the season. 

Franklin and Marshall 2, Ursinus 0 – F&M (5-2-1) is going to play a role in the Centennial race which should be even more interesting than ever with the top teams already knocking each other off.

No. 23 Augsburg 3, St. John's 0 – The Auggies (7-0-1) stay unbeaten overall and perfect in MIAC action.  They travel to Loras Sunday in a measuring-stick regional encounter. 

No. 12 Gustavus Adolphus 5, St. Mary's (Minn.) 0 – It’s the Gusties’ seventh shutout as they run their overall record to 9-1-0 with the conference win.  They are winning big in the games they should.

No. 18 St. Olaf 2, Hamline 2 – Not sure if their shots were that tame or if Hamline’s keeper is that good, but St. Olaf (8-1-1) shouldn’t be dropping points to 2-5-2 teams.  Beating Gustavus Adolphus and Elmhurst, but losing to UW-Superior and now this tie makes the Oles tough to gauge.

Medaille 2, Penn State-Behrend 1 – Penn St-Behrend (3-5-1) is not at the level of recent seasons, but still gave their AMCC rivals a game.  It’s hard to judge how good Medaille (8-2-1) is, but at the least they are a team you can’t look past.

Trinity (Conn.) 2, Western Connecticut 0 – It’s a third straight win over in-state opponents for the Bantums (4-1-2), but as long as Wesleyan is out there, their can be no claim to be kings of Connecticut yet.  The showdown for state supremacy is October 26.

No. 6 Dominican 4, Wisconsin Lutheran 0 – Easy time for Dominican (8-1-0).  Only real test remaining for the Stars is Loras on October 9.

Maryville (Tenn.) 4, Emory and Henry 0 – Maryville (7-2-1) is back to winning ways after two losses and a tie saw them drop out of the Top 25.  They had won their first six games of the season and can’t be completely ruled out of the running for the lone Pool B berth, although their soft strength-of-schedule makes that a long-shot.

Plattsburgh State 4, Lyndon State 0 – Walk in the park for Plattsburgh (8-0-1) who remains undefeated heading into their SUNYAC slate.  It’s been a soft schedule to date and given no other SUNYAC school has distinguished themselves yet in 2011, the conference is unpredictable as usual.

No. 1 Messiah 2, Eastern Mennonite 0 – Falcons (8-0-1) not the finished product yet but keep rolling despite the move to smaller synthetic field and disruptive 1-hour lightening delay.

Hampden-Sydney 2, Randolph 1 – Randolph (8-2-0) slump to second straight loss after perfect 8-0 start.  Except for their defeat of Maryville (Tenn.), no other win came against a team over .500 and they might not pass 10 regular season victories.

Baldwin-Wallace 6, Mount St. Joseph 0 -  Nine straight wins for Baldwin-Wallace (9-1-0), this one the easiest of the bunch, to wrap up their non-conference slate.  It’s all OAC action from here on out; can they give Ohio Northern a run for the title?

Earlham 2, Cincinnati Christian 0 – First win for Earlham (1-8-0) in what could be the worst season of Coach Messer’s 31 in charge.  But with a HCAC slate that includes Bluffton, Hanover, and Defiance, they could still better 2004’s 3-14-0 mark.

Luther 4, UW-Platteville 1 – After rough start that included losses to Macalester, and No. 18 St. Olaf and a tie with No. 23 Augsburg, Luther (7-2-1) has now rattled off six straight wins as they head into IIAC conference play.

No. 8 North Park 1, Chicago 1 (2OT) – North Park (5-0-4) picks up yet another tie but does remain undefeated.  On three ties, it was a bit surprising to see NPU in the Top 10 this week, so not sure what voters will think of yet another one.  But Chicago (5-1-2) is decent team that might be one of the UAA’s representatives in the NCAA’s.

Fitchburg State 4, Becker 3 – Fitchburg St. (1-8-0) claimed their first win of the 2011 season defeating their visitors by scoring a fourth time after twice giving up a lead. 


Wednesday, September 28

Elmira 2, Cazenovia 0 – A goal in each half keeps Elmira (9-0-0) perfect heading into October, something only four schools can say.  They resume Empire 8 play Saturday hosting St. John Fisher, with powerhouse Stevens coming the following weekend.

Misericordia 3, Lebanon Valley 0 – Misericordia (8-0-0) ran roughshod over their visitors in keeping their record spotless at the midway pioint.  Both schools start conference play Saturday in their respective halves of the MAC.

No. 3 Ohio Wesleyan 2, Case Western Reserve 1 – OWU (8-1-0) had all it could handle with currently unranked Case Western (7-2-0).  The Battling Bishops had  the upper hand in the opening 45 but nothing to show for it, and it was the Spartans who opened the scoring ten minutes after the break as they started to take the game to OWU with two more shots on goal soon after.  But a counter-attack goal tied the game and it was a see-saw affair to the end, both teams with chances but only the visitors finding the back of the net a second time.  Despite the loss, this should put Case Western on the radar as they become just the second team to take a lead on Ohio Wesleyan, the other being No. 1 Messiah on opening day.

No. 14 Swarthmore 2, No. 16 Muhlenberg 1 (2OT) – Swarthmore (6-2-0) averted the possibility of a third straight loss by holding also-ranked Muhlenberg (5-2-0) to just two shots while taking 20 of their own, nine on frame, in 100-plus minutes of their Centennial Conference clash.  If not for a goalie miscue on a through ball, that could have been just one shot allowed and everyone could have gone home after 90 minutes.  Now it’s the Mules who have dropped two straight, both in conference.      

No. 7 Washington U. 2, Fontbonne 0 – The Washington U. Bears (8-1-0) bounced back from a tough loss to No. 6 Dominican with a comfortable win over Fontbonne (6-4-1), a goal in each half doing the job.  The UAA regular season kicks off this weekend; Washington hosts a struggling Carnegie Mellon on Sunday.

UW-Whitewater 2, No. 15 UW-Oshkosh 0 – Huge, huge result for Whitewater and for the Pool B landscape.  Whitewater had recovered from their disastrous 0-4 start with four straight wins coming into this rivalry match.  Oshkosh somewhat unconvincingly had run their record to 5-1-2, but nevertheless the lone Pool B berth to the NCAA’s seemed theirs to lose given the failings of Whitewater and UC Santa Cruz.  In a tightly contested match, it was visiting Whitewater who had the better finishing scoring a goal in each half for the win. So . . . is Whitewater back?  Without a quality win yet, has Oshkosh been over-rated?  In any case, this opens the Pool B picture giving hope to not just Whitewater but maybe Maryville (Tenn.) as well.  The two Wisconsin schools will meet a second time on November 4 to close out the regular season.

Scranton 2, York (Pa.) 1 – Being edged by Scranton (3-4-2), in front of their own fans nonetheless, might be the low point for York (3-3-3) since coach Mark Ludwig’s first season in charge twelve years ago.  It’s the only time since that debut campaign that his Spartans weren’t over .500 heading into October.  And it could get worse with Salisbury and Messiah up next, both home games. 

Gettysburg 0, Johns Hopkins 0 (2OT) – It was a evenly played Centennial Conference game in what is shaping up to be a very interesting conference race.  There are suggestions that maybe the overall level in the conference had dropped a notch, but that does not change the parity and competitiveness that will inevitably leave a team out of the playoffs who thinks they could have made a run for the title.  Both teams will be disappointed that they couldn’t manage that single goal that would have distanced them from that danger.  

Eastern Nazarene 11, Wheelock 1 – Ouch!  Wheelock (0-6-0) gave up double-digit goals for the fourth time this season and are still in search of their first win . . . not just of the year, but in program history.  In just their third season, Wheelock is 0-34-0.  On paper, one would have thought Eastern Nazarene (2-8-0) to be one of the games that Wheelock might have had a chance for their historic first win.  If that win is going to come this season, the next three games represent the best chances: 10/1 Becker (1-7-2),10/4 Newbury (1-5), and 10/6 Mass. Maritime (0-7).

Bridgewater State 3, Lasell 0 – Lasell (6-1-1) drop from the ranks of the undefeateds in non-conference action.

Lynchburg 1, Bridgewater (Va.) 0 – 2010 national runner-up Lynchburg (4-4-2) wins their second straight to get back to .500 ahead of a big test when Rutgers-Camdem visit them this Saturday.

Methodist 3, St. Mary's (Md.) 1 – Methodist improves to 5-1-2 with the win, but it’s hard to measure a team that loses 5-2 to Oglethorpe and then draws 1-1 with a very good North Park side.  St. Mary’s (5-4-0) had a promising 4-0 start but now only one win in their last five.

Roanoke 1, Averett 0 (2OT) – Roanoke (7-2-1) edge the up-and-coming Averett (6-2-1) in a south region tilt.  As we edge closer to the NCAA regional rankings that directly impact the NCAA selections, this was an important regional game for both to win, and it was the Maroons who helped themselves.  Despite the loss, Averett continues to push for inclusion among the top teams in the region.  Now in his fourth season, coach Ed Goodhines turned Averett from the USA South doormat to a competitive team in his first two years and now has his sights set on a conference title and the school’s first berth (be it AQ or Pool C) in the NCAA tournament in thirty years.

Roger Williams 2, Wheaton (Mass.) 1 – Roger Williams (9-0-1) remains undefeated heading into October.  At 3-5-2, Wheaton are in danger of having their worst season under Coach Matt Cushing who’s been at the helm for 17 years.

Western New England 3, Nichols 0 – With the win, WNEC (8-2-0) joins Roger Williams atop the CCC with 3-0-0 marks.  This could be an interesting battle.  Their regular season clash is two weeks away.

Dickinson 4, McDaniel 1 – Dickinson (6-2-2) is a perfect 3-0 in the Centennial Conference as they follow-up their upset of Swarthmore with another win. 

Carleton 3, Macalester 1 – Despite struggles out of conference, Carleton (4-3-1) stays perfect in the MIAC at 3-0-0.  Still have Gustavus Adolphus, Augsburg, and St. Olaf to play.  Pre-season favorites Macalester (4-5-0) are 2-2-0.

Faulkner 2, Huntingdon 0 – Another loss, another shutout—Huntingdon (0-7-1) is still without a win and have now gone four games without a goal scored.

Lake Forest 3, Millikin 0 – Lake Forest (9-0-1) continues unbeaten , Millikin (0-10-0) remains winless in the final non-conference game for both teams.  Picked to finish third in the pre-season coaches poll, Lake Forest might be MWC favorites now given how poorly Carroll and Ripon have fared thus far.

Frostburg State 2, Lycoming 0 – Frostburg St. is 6-1-1 and one to keep an eye on given that the CAC might be as open as it’s been in long time.  Mary Washington comes calling Saturday and a win would be a big signal of intent.

Manhattanville 2, Merchant Marine 1 – The Valiants of Manhattanville are quietly 9-1-0 with their first win over a quality opponent. Their only loss was to No. 22 Stevens by a 4-3 count with the final six goals being scored in a wild 20 minute stretch in the second half.  Merchant Marine (6-3-0) still looking for a quality win.

WPI 1, Salve Regina 0 – The WPI Engineers are 8-1-0, but will need a result against Babson this Saturday to be taken seriously.

DeSales 1, Albright 0 – DeSales (7-2-1) wins fourth straight after their loss to No. 1 Messiah.

Alfred 3, Hilbert 0 – It was never in the cards for Hilbert (0-9-1) to gain their first victory–it was a week day and Alfred (4-4-1) doesn’t lose on week days.  0-4 on Saturdays, if this patterns continues Alfred will lose to Ithaca this weekend and beat Keuka next Tuesday.

Dubuque 3, Elmhurst 0 –  After a promising 5-0 start, Dubuque (6-2-1) hadn’t won in three games; Elmhurst (4-3-2) hadn’t won in four.  That became five when the Spartans scored three times in the second half.

Amherst 4, Gordon 1 – Amherst (6-0-0) stays perfect with easy out-of-conference win.

Montclair State 2, Rutgers-Newark 1 – With the third straight conference win, MSU (7-1-2 / 3-0-1) is joint top of the always competitive NJAC.  Newark (6-4-0) on the other had already has three conference losses.

Rutgers-Camden 1, New Jersey 1 – In NJAC action, Rutgers-Camden (8-2-1) and TCNJ (4-4-2) played to a 1-1 tie.  The result opened the door for Montclair St. to join Camden atop the NJAC standings at 3-0-1.  TNCJ is still winless in conference play. 

Kean 1, New Jersey City 0 – Despite being outplayed on the road, an early goal is enough for Kean (6-2-2 / 3-1-0) to keep pace with MSU and Rutgers-Camden in the NJAC.  NJCU is 0 for 2 in conference play.

Shenandoah 1, Hood 0 – Shenandoah (1-6-1) notches their first win of the season.

Redlands 8, Caltech 0 – In a SCIAC mismatch, Redlands (7-3-0) pounds Caltech in preparation for a Saturday showdown with Claremont at home.

Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 2, La Verne 2 (2OT) – More proof that the west coast is as week as ever as Claremont-M-S (6-2-1) is held even by 1-5-1 LaVerne in SCIAC action ahead of a Saturday trip to Redlands.   


Thursday, September 29

Anna Maria 5, Massachusetts Maritime 2 – Anna Maria (2-9-1) picks up their second win of the week after opening the season 0-8-1 while Mass. Maritime (0-7-0) remains winless.  It’s Anna Maria’s third game in four days and they play again on Saturday.


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Christan Shirk


Christan Shirk is a Messiah College graduate (1993, Civil Engineering) and has been a keen and passionate observer of D-III soccer for over a decade. Never more than a rec-league player himself, Chris brings an analytical approach and nationwide perspective to He loves D-III soccer history, statistical number-crunching, and off-the-radar action, all of which he gladly shares with his readers when he's able to find time to write.

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