Race for the Playoffs update

Photo by Robert Zielonka

With four regular season matches to go before the 2015 NPSL Midwest Conference tournament, it’s time to see how it all could shake out.

With that, we present the “Race for the Playoffs” report, brought to you by Batavia Downs Gaming and Hilbert College.

FCB comes into the home stretch with 3 wins, 4 ties and 1 loss for a fourth-place 13 points. Four teams in the Midwest make the playoffs, and will contest a two-day seeded tournament July 24-26.

bataviadownsgamingThree of your Wolves’ four remaining opponents have already appeared on the schedule this season, beginning with Friday night’s opponent, Erie.

Of course you know that FCB was on the short end of the stick when Erie visited last time, falling 2-0 on a PK given to Erie and late consolation goal (with a now-infamous non-PK call for the home team in between).

The good news? FCB beat Erie on the road last season, pulling off a 4-2 win to open the season. Erie (3W-4L) comes into Friday’s match on a three-match losing streak. Gus Anderson Field at McDowell High School is the venue for this 7 p.m. Erie County Derby tilt.

HilbertOn Sunday, the Blitzers host the second leg of the Upstate NY Derby against Greater Binghamton FC Thunder. The match against our former conference mates, who remain in the NPSL’s Keystone Conference, doesn’t play into the Midwest standings but will be big for in-state bragging rights. Come on out to All-High at 1 p.m.

Which brings us to Friday, July 10 and the first ever visit to Buffalo from 2014 division winners Lansing United. It should be a critical match, as United is in third place to our fourth in the standings. Lansing beat us 2-1 in Michigan last season, and boasts a 5W-1L-2T record this season.

Two days later, FCB finishes our road portion of the regular season with a visit to Fort Pitt Regiment. Brett Larocque and Andrew Ferguson scored in our 2-0 home win over FPR on June 21, but facing them on the road has traditionally been a tough point.

Finally, FCB will close out the regular season with a visit from our most recent opponent, AFC Cleveland. After a 1-1 road draw on Saturday night, a win on July 17 will likely play a big role in the standings. Thanks to a rainout and back-loaded schedule, the Royals have two more games left on their schedule.

Here’s the table

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 11.24.11 AM

And remaining opponents

Detroit City (3): vs. Michigan Stars, at Erie, vs. Michigan Stars

Madison 56ers (3): vs. Minnesota United Reserves, vs. Cincinnati Saints, vs. Minnesota TwinStars

Lansing United (4): vs. Michigan Stars, at FC Buffalo, at AFC Cleveland, vs. Erie

FC Buffalo (4): at Erie, vs. Lansing United, at Fort Pitt Regiment, vs. AFC Cleveland

Indiana Fire (4): vs. FC Indiana, at Minnesota TwinStars, vs. Minnesota United Reserves, at Cincinnati Saints

AFC Cleveland (6): vs. Fort Pitt Regiment, at Erie Commodores, at FC Indiana, vs. Lansing United, at FC Buffalo, at Fort Pitt Regiment

Minnesota United Reserves (4): vs. Minnesota TwinStars, at Madison 56ers, at Minnesota TwinStars, at Indiana Fire

Michigan Stars (3): at Lansing United, at Detroit City, vs. Detroit City

Cincinnati Saints (3): at Minnesota TwinStars, at Madison 56ers, vs. Indiana Fire

Erie (5): vs. FC Buffalo, vs. AFC Cleveland, vs. Fort Pitt Regiment, at Detroit City, at Lansing United

FC Indiana (3): at Indiana Fire, vs. AFC Cleveland, vs. Minnesota TwinStars

Fort Pitt Regiment (4): at AFC Cleveland, at Erie, vs. FC Buffalo, vs. AFC Cleveland

Minnesota TwinStars (6): at Minnesota United Reserves, vs. Cincinnati Saints, vs. Indiana Fire, vs. Minnesota United Reserves, at Madison 56ers, at FC Indiana