SEWARD, Neb. – More than halfway through the regular season, the Concordia University men’s soccer team has enjoyed a much needed mid-week bye. The Bulldogs have been idle since their 5-0 victory at Dordt on Sept. 28. The blowout victory moved head coach Jason Weides’ squad to 8-1 overall. It remains perfect at 3-0 within conference play. Now Concordia gets set to host Mount Marty at 3:30 p.m. CT on Saturday. The contest will be carried live by the Concordia Sports Network.
The bye was well-time simply because it has allowed Weides to rest some key performers who have been banged up over the season’s first nine games. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs do not expect to have senior Roger de la Villa available for the remainder of the campaign. On the plus side, senior standout Carlos Ferrer is expected to make a return to the lineup in the near future. The team’s depth has been a saving grace in making up for a rash of injuries.
In the latest GPAC poll, Concordia again checked in at No. 3 behind Hastings and Morningside. Prior to the loss last week to Kansas Wesleyan University, the Bulldogs appeared to have a case for top 25 consideration. In Massey Ratings, Concordia is currently rated 29th nationally. Up against what Massey rates as the NAIA’s 115th most challenging schedule to date, the Bulldogs have outscored their opponents by a combined total of 31-7. The victory at Dordt marked the team’s fourth shutout of the season.
Fifteen Concordia players have found the back of the net so far this season. Budding freshman Moises Jacobo has led the way to this point with six goals. Four others have at least three goals: Ferrer (four), de la Villa (three), Ryan LeTourneau (three) and Isaiah Shaddick (three). Weides also believes there are more goals in Garrett Perry, who knocked in his first two of the season in the win at Dordt. Concordia ranks 24th nationally in goals scored per game (3.44). It also owns an active streak of 10-straight GPAC regular-season games without a loss (8-0-2).
The Bulldogs have typically had their way with Mount Marty (3-5, 2-2 GPAC), which they defeated 11-0 in 2016. Since then, the meetings have gotten more competitive. Last season Concordia toppled the Lancers, 3-1, in Yankton. Mount Marty is clearly getting better. The Lancers have beaten Presentation, 6-1, and Dakota Wesleyan, 3-1, inside conference play. Head coach Carlos Saenz’s squad also pushed No. 5 Hastings to the brink in a 1-0 double overtime loss on Sept. 21. Mount Marty has 11 goals scored compared to 16 allowed this season.
Next week will challenge Concordia. It will host Midland on Oct. 9 before heading to Hastings for a showdown on Oct. 12.