Notebook: Eastern’s chances at tournament down to one match

Blake Faith, Men's Soccer Reporter

The Eastern men’s soccer team’s Summit League tournament’s chances are down to one match and one result.

The match is Denver and Fort Wayne’s this Saturday and Fort Wayne must tie or win against Denver for the Panthers to clinch the fourth seed in the Summit League tournament.

Denver’s record is 3-11-3 with a conference record of 1-2-1. This Denver team is a lot different than the team that won the Summit League tournament last year. Their NCAA leading scorer Andre Shinyashiki has graduated and now plays professionally with the Colorado Rapids.

Denver currently is on a two-game losing streak on the road against Duke and Rhode Island. Against Rhode Island, Denver lost in overtime 2-1.

Duke’s record is 7-8-2 while competing in one of the tougher conferences in Men’s soccer. Duke defeated Denver 1-0 at home.

Denver’s lone conference win comes against second-place Omaha on the road. Their tie was against Eastern at home in a double-overtime 0-0 result.

Fort Wayne’s overall record is 3-14 with a conference record of 0-4. Two of Fort Wayne’s conference defeats have been by a one-goal difference. That includes the result against Eastern and a 1-0 loss against Omaha.

The Panthers took care of their part of the scenario when they defeated Fort Wayne on Nov. 2. On Tuesday, the Panthers completed their regular season against Green Bay losing in overtime 2-1.

The Panther’s regular season record finished at 5-9-2 with a conference record of 1-2-2. All of Eastern’s conference matches had a difference of two goals or less.

The Panthers currently have a one-point lead on Denver in the Summit League standings. If Denver wins against Fort Wayne they will fill the fourth and final slot.

If Denver ties against Fort Wayne the breakdown will go down to wins record overall and that would be in Eastern’s favor. If Denver loses the Panthers automatically clinch the fourth spot.

Whoever clinches the fourth spot in the Summit League standings will face Oral Robers in the first game of the tournament. Both Denver and Eastern lost their conference matches against Oral Roberts.

On the outside, most people would think that Denver is going to win easily and the Panther season is over.

In sports no result is a guarantee, so Eastern’s chances are still alive. The men’s soccer team will still put in preparation and training ahead of the result on Saturday.

Blake Faith can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]