By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- One week after moving into the NCAA Division III West Region Rankings at #6, the Willamette University men's soccer team has advance two positions to #4 in this week's rankings released by the United Soccer Coaches. The improvement resulted from a combination of Willamette's 1-0 win over archrival Linfield College on Oct. 8, and the correction of the Bearcats' 1-0 win over University of California, Santa Cruz on Sunday, Sept. 10, which the United Soccer Coaches originally had as a 1-0 loss to the Banana Slugs.
The Bearcats are now 7-3-1 on the season, including 6-0-1 (1st place) in the Northwest Conference. The Bearcats have 19 points in the NWC standings and hold a six-point lead at the midway point of the 14-game conference schedule.
Trinity University (Texas) remained in the #1 spot in the West Region with an 11-1-0 record against NCAA Division III teams. University of Redlands (Calif.) stayed at #2. The Bulldogs owned a 9-3-1 record. University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (Texas), also kept its position at #3 with an 11-1-0 mark. Willamette jumped up to #4 at 7-3-1, while University of Texas-Tyler retained the #5 spot at 5-2-2.
Colorado College followed at #6 with an 8-2-1 record after falling to spots. California Lutheran University advanced one position to #7 with a 7-3-1 mark. Three newcomers to the rankings completed the top 10. They were Chapman University (Calif.0 at #8 with a 6-4-3 record, Pacific Lutheran University at #9 with a 6-4-2 record, and Concordia University (Texas) at #10 with a 6-3-1 record.
Trinity jumped from #3 up to #2 in the NCAA Division III National Poll, while Redlands moved up three spots to #16, and Mary Hardin-Baylor stepped up one position to #21. Calvin College (Mich.) from the Central Region took over the #1 ranking in the National Poll after being listed at #2 last week. The previous top team, University of Chicago (Ill.) slipped to #3 after losing to Emory University (Ga.), 3-0.
Willamette will play a pair of Northwest Conference home games this weekend. On Saturday, Oct. 14, the Bearcats will take on Whitman College at Sparks Field at 2:30 p.m. (PDT). On Sunday, Oct. 15, Willamette will return to Sparks Field at 2:30 p.m. to battle Whitworth University.