It's a matchup worthy of prime time. Hamline's women's soccer team heads to Augsburg for a 7:30 p.m. meeting tonight that has plenty of incentives for both teams.
The Pipers set a school record with their 11th win of the season Tuesday when they defeated Wis-Stout, 3-1. Their 4-3-1 mark in the MIAC (good for 13 points) has been placed them in a flatfooted tie for fifth place with St. Benedict. But they are just one point behind the triumvirate of the Auggies, Bethel and St. Olaf, all of whom stand 4-2-2 in league play. Since only the top four teams make the playoffs, it is easy to understand why tonight's battle takes on added importance.
Hamline, which has won four matches in a row, finishes the season next week with a home date against St. Ben's and a road entanglement at St. Catherine's (8-6, 3-5 MIAC). If they win out, they are guaranteed a playoff position.
To do that, however, they will have to overtake the Auggies, who stand 9-4-2 overall after seeing their six-match unbeaten streak end in a 1-0 loss to St. Scholastica on October 16.
It's a battle of two of the top scoring teams in the league. Hamline, led by top goal scorer Aileen Scheibner (second in the league with nine goals), has scored 29 goals -- tops in the league. Augsburg is third with 27 netters. Both teams can also defend. The Auggies started the season with five consecutive shutouts and have recorded eight in 2012. HU goalie Molly Jacobs (pictured) nearly matched that feat with four blankings to open the year. Hamline also has eight shutouts on the year. Jacobs has seven solos and shared another one with backup Sam Berger.
A live video and stats feed (via Augsburg's website) can be found by clicking here.
Fans who will attend the game are advised there are some parking problems near Augsburg. If you are attending the game tonight, please go to this link for more information.