TOWSON, Md. - The Landmark men's soccer playoffs kick off Thursday night with the top four teams in action. Both match-ups are a first in Landmark tournament history.
In the first game of the day, No. 1 Catholic will host No. 4 Juniata. This marks Juniata's first appearance in the Landmark playoffs after setting a program record for wins in a season. The Cardinals hold the 6-0-1 advantage in Landmark history and have gone 4-0 on their home field. That is not to stay the games have not been close as three of the seven games have gone to overtime.
The last time the two teams met, Catholic earned the 2-0 win in Washington less than two weeks ago. The Cardinals scored a quick goal in the fifth minute of play and added an insurance goal in the 54th minute to secure the win.
The second semifinal pits No. 2 Susquehanna against No. 3 U.S. Merchant Marine Academy. Susquehanna is back to defend its 2012 title and anxious for some revenge after dropping a 2-1 overtime contest to start conference play Sept. 21. In the earlier game, USMMA went up 1-0 in the 12th minute before the Crusaders tied the game in the 75th minute. The Mariners' Dan Weldon scored the game-winning goal in the 97th minute despite Susquehanna holding a 20-13 advantage in shots.
USMMA leads the series 5-2 in Landmark history and has gone 4-0 in Selinsgrove. Three of the seven games have gone to overtime including this year's match. The semifinal will mark USMMA's sixth game in 16 days, while it will be Susquehanna's third game in the same timeframe. USMMA could take advantage of the momentum from an overtime win on Monday to clinch the playoffs or Susquehanna could use the rest to their advantage and test the Mariners' stamina.
The semifinal winners will compete for the championship on Saturday, Nov. 9. The highest remaining seed will have the opportunity to host the game at a time yet to be decided.
The status of any and all live coverage during the championship will be available HERE.
Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for non-Landmark students and seniors. Landmark students, faculty and staff will receive free admission along with children 10 and under.