Men’s soccer team sits at fifth place ahead of conference play


Adam Tumino | The Daily Eastern News

Eastern goalkeeper Mac Van Oudt reaches to deflect a shot in the Panthers’ 2-0 loss to Belmont Tuesday at Lakeside Field.

Brian Barrett, Men's Soccer Reporter

The Summit League men’s soccer season is well underway, so it is time to look at how each team is fairing thus far in the campaign.

With conference play beginning this weekend, none of the Summit League teams have played each other, but for now this is how they stand.

At the top of the list is the Oral Roberts. They have been golden at home with a 4-0 record down in Tulsa. Unfortunately, they have yet to pick up a road win and sit at 0-2-1 away from their home turf. The Golden Eagles ride a three-game win streak into Denver where they will face a tough mile high team.

Speaking of Denver, they currently sit at number two in the rankings. Opposite of Oral Roberts, Denver is performing better on the road with a 3-1-1 record as the visitors. Denver’s goal differential stands out because they are tied for the league lead in goals with 12 and best goals allowed mark with only 7 given up. The Pioneers play only one home game in their next four matches so we will see if their road warrior mantra can sustain them.

Currently in third place is Omaha with a record of 3-3-1. While they tie for the lead league in goals with the aforementioned Denver Pioneers, their 18 goals against is the second worst total in the league. They look to turn things around after losing two straight games and will get their first chance this Saturday against Western Illinois.

Kansas City is in fourth place which is where they have finished in the standings the past two seasons. Their 2-3-1 overall record keeps them within reach of the league’s top teams for now. Coming off a tie at Mercer they look to get it going against Lindenwood at home this Sunday.

Lindenwood won their first game of the season last Friday over Southern Indiana. They are one of only two Summit League teams to carry a winning streak to Kansas City and look to build upon that this weekend.

Eastern Illinois has given up four times as many goals as they have scored and it has proven to impact their record. Panther keepers have racked up 34 saves which is good enough for best in the Summit League. Regardless, the Panthers are 1-4-1 and have been held scoreless in two straight matches. Needless to say, EIU will certainly look to get ahead early this Saturday when the team takes on St. Thomas on the road.

Western Illinois University is the best of two winless teams. Their 0-4-3 record does show some character as the Leathernecks have grown accustomed to playing close games. In all seven games they have played this season they have never lost by more than one goal. This makes them an interesting team to watch down the stretch.

St. Thomas has played very disciplined soccer this year. Only committing seven fouls per game, (second best is 11) they pace the league in that category. St. Thomas is 1-6 with five of their losses taking place on the road. With three of their next four games being at home, look for them to build some confidence after a rough start to the season.

Finally in ninth place, Southern Indiana is currently 0-6-1. Like St. Thomas, a majority of their struggles have come away from home. With two games in Evansville coming Southern Indiana will continue to their quest for their first win.

Brian Barrett can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]