By Matt Noonan
It’s been a busy fall for numerous Massachusetts college teams, especially those that extended their campaigns beyond their regular season slates.
As of today, three local Division III squads remain in the hunt for some NCAA championship hardware and below is an update on where each squads stands.
Football: MIT’s football team – perhaps the story of the 2014 fall collegiate season? – won their first-ever postseason contest (in program history!) last weekend with a 27-20 overtime victory against Husson College (the winner of the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference). The Engineers advanced to tomorrow’s second round game against Wesley College, kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. If the Engineers can squeak out a victory against the fourth-ranked Wolverines, they’ll extend their season into December and compete against the winner of Hobart-Johns Hopkins on Saturday, December 6.
Men’s Soccer: The Jumbos of Tufts University punched their ticket to the 2014 NCAA Division III Men’s Soccer semifinals with a 1-0 victory against Messiah. Prior to their quarterfinal win, the Powder Blue and White defeated Dickinson, Wheaton (Mass.) and Muhlenberg. The Jumbos have outscored all four of their opponents by a score of 9-0.
Tufts returns to action on Friday, December 5 when they compete against Ohio Wesleyan. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. The game will take place at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri. If the Jumbos prevail, they’d face the winner of Oneonta State-Wheaton (Ill.) on Saturday, December 6 at 2:30 p.m. in the finals.
According to NCAA.com, the Jumbos have never appeared or competed in a national championship match.
Women’s Soccer: The second NESCAC (New England Small College Athletic Conference) squad to extend their fall season into December is the Williams College women’s soccer team. The Ephs, who’ll face Johns Hopkins on Friday, December 5 at 8:30 p.m., secured a spot in the 2014 NCAA Division III Women’s Soccer Tournament semifinals with four consecutive victories. Williams topped Lasell and Ithaca in the first and second rounds before claiming wins against Roger Williams and TCNJ in the third round and quarterfinals. Their last two wins against the Hawks and Lions were decided by one goal.
A win against the Blue Jays would pit Williams against Lynchburg or Illinois Wesleyan – the other two semifinalists. This year’s championship and semifinal matches will occur at the Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri. The finals – scheduled for Saturday, December 6 – would occur at 6:30 p.m.
According to NCAA.com, the Ephs have never competed in a national championship match. However, Williams did host a finals match in 1999, but the game featured UC San Diego and Macalester.