TOWSON, Md. – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's soccer team went 26 days without a game in the middle of its season and the regular season was stretched an extra two days in order to make up three Landmark games, but the Mariners battled back to earn the final spot in the Landmark playoffs.
Catholic University suffered a loss to USMMA in the regular season finale, but clinched the No. 1 seed in the tournament on Saturday with a win over Scranton. The Cardinals finish 5-1-1 in Landmark play with 16 points. Susquehanna was the first team to clinch a spot in the tournament and finished 5-2 with 15 points to earn the No. 2 seed.
Going into the shutdown, USMMA was 1-1 in the conference, but three points did not go very far when the other teams had been competing during the Mariners' three-week break. Head coach Michael Smolens has led his team through five games in 12 days to clinch the third seed in the playoffs with a 4-3 record and 12 points.
Juniata College is in the men's soccer tournament for the first time in Landmark history. The Eagles went 1-6 last year to finish seventh and came back this season to go 3-3-1. Juniata tied Scranton with 10 points, but a 1-0 overtime win over the Royals in the first Landmark game of the season gave Juniata the playoff berth.
The semifinals will take place Thursday, Nov. 7 with the top two seeds hosting. Catholic and Juniata will play at 2:30 p.m. USMMA will travel to Susquehanna for a 7:00 p.m. match.
1. Catholic (5-1-1) – 16 pts
2. Susquehanna (5-2-0) – 15 pts
3. USMMA (4-3-0) – 12 pts
4. Juniata (3-3-1) – 10 pts *
5. Scranton (3-3-1) – 10 pts *
6. Drew (2-2-3) – 9 pts
7. Goucher (2-3-2) – 8 pts
8. Moravian (0-7-0) – 0 pts
2013 Landmark Conference Men's Soccer Championship
Semifinals – Thursday, Nov. 7
No. 4 Juniata at No. 1 Catholic – 2:30 p.m.
No. 3 USMMA at No. 2 Susquehanna – 7:00 p.m.
Championship – Saturday, Nov. 9 at Highest Remaining Seed
Semifinal Winners – TBA