The season isn’t over yet, but the Fort Lewis College men’s soccer team was announced Monday as host for the 2009 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Men’s Tournament from Nov. 6-8 at Dirks Field. The No. 23 women’s team will travel to Metro State for its tournament.
The FLC men likely will lead the conference standings – they could clinch with another win – but the decision to announce the tournament hosts with four games remaining on the schedule was made to ease the financial and logistical burden on the winning bidder.
“We’ve just got to win one this weekend, and we’ll be the No. 1 seed,” said first-year men’s head coach Oige Kennedy, who praised FLC athletic director Kelly Higgins for his work securing the bid.
The No. 6 Skyhawks (10-0-0 RMAC, 13-1-0 overall) are the defending conference champions after winning last year’s event as hosts. Only Incarnate Word has beaten the men this year.
Tickets for adults will be $10 for one day or $15 for two days. For students, one day will cost $3 and two days $5.
Play begins Nov. 6 with the No. 4 seed taking on the No. 1 seed, then the No. 3 seed against the No. 2 seed. The championship match is Nov. 8 between the winners, starting at 1 p.m.
The women’s team would be the
No. 2 seed and advance to the second round automatically in Denver if the tournament was held today. The women’s tournament admits six seeds instead of four, with the bottom four battling to reach the semifinals.
“We performed better on Metro’s field than anybody else in conference,” said head coach Damian Clarke, whose team lost 3-2 in the second overtime against the No. 6 Roadrunners on the road and 1-0 in Durango.
Clarke said the Skyhawks have won twice and tied at Metro State in the last three years.
“Our goal is just to win out the rest of the season, and bypass the first round for the first time ever,” he said, pointing to the regional significance of the remaining games. FLC is No. 2 in the Central, but Minnesota-Duluth, Colorado Mines, Regis and Minnesota State-Mankato all could overtake the Skyhawks with a misstep.
The FLC men host Metro State at 3:30 p.m. Friday, before Zane Wells, Jeff Jennings, David Barden, Euan Purcell, Tom Settle and Sam Morris will be honored at 1 p.m. Sunday for a Senior Day match against Regis University.
The women hit the road for must-win conference games against University of Colorado at Colorado Springs on Friday and Colorado State University-Pueblo on Sunday.