According to the calendar, it is officially the fall season. While the University of Michigan football team plays over in Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan-Dearborn fútbol team takes to the pitch in 2014.
The Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference men’s soccer season began last month, and even though the season is still young, one juggernaut has emerged from the rest of the conference.
Davenport is the clear top dog in the WHAC, boasting an impressive 10-1 record and are undefeated in conference matches. The Panthers have outscored opponents by three goals or more in seven of their last eight games — the exception being their overtime loss to Indiana Wesleyan University.
They have scored almost four times as many goals than those allowed (44 to 12) and have outshot teams by over 75 goals. Davenport is, without a doubt, a well balanced team led by Midfielder, Dzenan Catic. With 17 goals and 38 points, he is easily Davenport’s strongest offensive weapon.
Behind Davenport there is a group of similarly talented teams, composed of the University of Northwestern Ohio, Marygrove College, Madonna University and Aquinas College.
Aquinas statistically performed the best out of this group, reaching 25 goals and 61 points overall, although it has a poorer conference record with two losses and one tie.
The other three teams have very similar stats.
Madonna and Northwestern Ohio have each scored 18 goals with 14 assists and totaled 50 points. Marygrove also has 18 goals but has racked up one more assist and point.
As can be imagined, the records for these teams reflect their nearly mirrored statistics. Northwestern Ohio has the more respectable record of 6-2-1. Madonna and Aquinas are right on its tail at 6-3 and 6-4-1 respectively.
The outlier of the group is Marygrove with only three wins and eight losses to show for. Northwestern Ohio has the early advantage in conference play as well with two wins and zero losses.
Marygrove also has two wins coupled with one conference loss. Madonna is third out of this group with a single conference win and loss. Unfortunately for Aquinas interleague play has not been kind to them. It has accrued zero wins against their WHAC competitors along with one tie.
One team to watch in the coming weeks may be Indiana Tech. Although its record is mediocre (4-2-1, 1-1 WHAC) in three of its four most recent games, Indiana Tech has played into double overtime twice with a single overtime game in between. And in the last two of these overtime matches, it has been victorious. Perhaps these grueling games will ignite a spark in the team and lead to improved play in against other WHAC.
The final five teams may have not enjoyed the same successes early in this season, but there are still many games left.
Of these teams, Lawrence Tech has the best record of 4-5 with an 0-1 conference record. By contrast, Concordia has a 2-1 conference record but is only 3-6 overall. In the middle is Cornerstone University coming in at 3-6-1 amassing one win, loss and tie in conference play.
These three teams, while flawed, are still slightly above the final two. Sienna Heights, like Lawrence Tech, has yet to win in the WHAC with two losses. Overall the Saints have won one game and loss ten. Situated solely in last is UM-Dearborn with no wins and seven losses, two of which are within conference.
Teams have taken full advantage of the Wolverines, scoring six times more goals and almost seven times as many points. Head Coach, Matt Quirk, and his players certainly have their work cut out for them, but with plenty of games left this season, UM-Dearborn will have opportunities to improve in all areas.