Photo by Russell Marwitz/True To The Cru/russellmarwitz.com
The Cru, who are 14-0-1 overall, and claimed a share of the American Southwest Conference regular season title on Saturday, were ranked No. 13 in Tuesday’s Top 25 Poll. It is the second time in the last two years that the program has been listed at No. 13, as UMHB headed into last year’s NCAA Tournament with the same rank.
UMHB moved up two spots in the last week, having been No. 15 in last week’s Top 25. The Crusaders are the only team in Texas that is currently ranked and one of two Region 10 teams included in the poll, with Pomona-Pitzer slotted at No. 17. Both teams are expected to be towards the top of the first numerical Region 10 regional rankings, which will be released by the D-III women’s soccer national committee on Wednesday.
UMHB now sits alone atop the ASC standings, with one regular season match left on the 2023 regular season slate. That finale is set for Saturday, where UMHB hosts Concordia (TX) at 5:00 p.m. in Belton. This past weekend in Abilene, The Cru pitched a pair of shutouts, first handing HSU a 1-0 defeat, and followed that with a 2-0 win over McMurry. With a win or a tie over Concordia on Saturday, UMHB would claim the league’s regular season title outright for the second straight season.
The ASC Women’s Soccer Tournament will be hosted at the site of the No. 2 finisher in the conference standings this season, despite UMHB taking the No. 1 seed. This is due to an alternating policy that gives hosting priority to men’s teams in odd numbered years, and women’s teams in even numbered years. UMHB men’s soccer claimed its ASC regular season title on Saturday, and will host the semifinals and final of the conference tournament Nov. 2 and 4.
Last season, the Crusader women hosted the final two rounds of the league tournament, securing a national tournament bid with a 1-0 win over HSU in the title game. This year’s UMHB women’s team is looking to become the first in program history with NCAA Tournament appearances in consecutive seasons.