Late on Saturday night, the American Southwest Conference made an official announcement, recognizing UMHB as the league’s regular season champion for the third straight season.
Notably, it earns The Cru hosting privileges for the upcoming ASC Tournament, set to be held from Oct. 31-Nov. 4. The six-team tournament begins with quarterfinal matchups on Oct. 31, played on the campuses of the No. 3 and No. 4 seeds. The top two seeds, of which UMHB will be one, receive a quarterfinal bye.
The semifinals and final will be played on Nov. 2 and Nov. 4, respectively, in Belton, giving UMHB an opportunity to win the conference tournament–and secure an NCAA playoff berth–on its home field. That is something the Crusaders have not accomplished since 2017, when they took down UT-Tyler, 1-0 in the league championship match.
With one match left on the regular season slate, UMHB is 7-0 in conference play, and the lone remaining team in the ASC that is undefeated against league opponents. That regular season finale is set for Oct. 28 in Belton, where The Cru faces Concordia (TX) at 7:30 p.m.
On Saturday afternoon, UMHB shutout McMurry in Abilene, 2-0, closing out the final road trip of the regular season with a pair of wins in West Texas. Against league opponents this season, the Crusaders have posted a +18 goal differential, with 22 goals of their own to a combined four goals scored by the seven opponents.
UMHB enters the postseason as the ASC’s No. 1 seed for the third straight year, and second under head coach Ben Allen, who is a UMHB alum. Allen took the reins of the program after Brad Bankhead moved into an administrative role following The Cru’s perfect 10-0 season in ASC play in 2021. Last season, the first under Allen’s leadership, UMHB dominated against UT-Dallas and LeTourneau in the ASC Tournament, securing an NCAA Tournament bid in a campaign that ended with a 13-3-1 record.
In addition to the UMHB men’s ASC regular season title announcement, the conference also announced that the UMHB women’s soccer program earned at least a share of the conference title with wins at Hardin-Simmons and McMurry this weekend, both of which were shutouts. With a 6-0-1 record in conference play, and the final regular season match against Concordia (TX) set for Oct. 28, UMHB is in position to claim back-to-back regular season conference titles for the first time in program history. A win over Concordia (TX) would give UMHB the regular season title outright, regardless of next week’s results for Hardin-Simmons, who trails The Cru by six points in the ASC standings.