URI Caps Historic Turnaround with Top-Seed in A-10 Men's Soccer Championship
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The University of Rhode Island Rams have earned the top-seed in the 2014 Atlantic 10 Men’s Soccer Championship to be held Nov. 13-16 at Sports Backers Stadium in Richmond, Va.
The Rams went 7-1-0 for 21 points in league play to finish in first place, just a season removed from finishing winless against conference foes. The Rams are just the second team in league history to go from the bottom of the standings one year, to first place the next season. URI is the first program to finish first after having a winless campaign the prior season. Rhody is currently ranked No. 21 in the nation.
Saint Louis is seeded second after finishing the regular season with a 5-1-2 mark in A-10 play. SLU finished as runner up in the Championship last season and is currently ranked as high as No. 11 in the nation in the various soccer polls.
Championship Host VCU tallied 15 points in A-10 play, finishing 4-1-3 good for the third seed in the Championship. The Rams, who will be playing on their home pitch, played one of the most difficult schedules in the nation, facing seven ranked opponents, including four which were ranked in the top five at the time of their match.
Defending A-10 Champion George Mason and the league’s newest member Davidson finished in a tie for fourth place with 14 points with identical 4-2-2 records. The Patriots secured the fourth-seed by virtue of its 2-1 overtime win over Davidson on Oct. 25. Both Mason and Davidson have been ranked nationally this season.
Fordham, La Salle and Dayton all finished 3-3-2 in the A-10 for a total of 11 points. The Rams are slotted sixth because of their wins over both the Explorers and Flyers in the regular season. La Salle is the seventh seed on the strength of its head-to-head win over UD on Nov. 7.
The Championship will kick off Thursday, Nov. 13 when Rhody and Dayton square off at 11:00 a.m. Mason and Davidson will tangle at 2:00 p.m., while Saint Louis and La Salle will play at 5:00 p.m. The host Rams will take on Fordham in the nightcap at 8:00 p.m.
The winner of the URI and UD match will take on the winner of the Patriots and Wildcats in Friday’s first semifinal at 5:00 p.m., while the two winners of SLU and La Salle and VCU and Fordham will play at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
After an off day on Saturday, the semifinal winners will clash at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday with the winner receiving the A-10’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
All seven matches can be seen live on the A-10 Network on Atlantic 10.com for FREE.