FHSU Sports Information Department
The Fort Hays State men’s soccer team looks to make another postseason run on today against conference foe Upper Iowa in the Central Region Final of the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers are looking for their second-straight Central Region Championship and appearance in the NCAA Quarterfinals. The teams take the pitch at 4 pm at Rockhurst University.
The two teams have faced off twice this year with each team gaining a victory on the opposition’s turf. The Tigers defeated Upper Iowa 3-2 in Fayette, Iowa, in early October before the Peacocks responded a month later with a 1-0 in Hays in early November.
With the 1-0 victory in Hays, Upper Iowa clinched the MIAA Regular Season Championship for 2015 season. The Peacocks ended the regular season with an overall record of 13-3-1 and an MIAA record of 6-2. The Tigers finished the regular season toting an overall record of 12-5-1, and an MIAA record of 4-3-1. The 12 wins were a new program record for FHSU in the regular season.
Upper Iowa is the No. 1 seed in the Central Region and Fort Hays State is the No. 2 seed. Due to a low number of teams in the Central Region, neither team had to compete in a regional contest to advance to the Super Regional hosted by the No. 1 seed from the Midwest Region, Rockhurst University.
The Tiger have the top offensive weapon in the region, MIAA Player of the Year Mauricio Castorino. Castorino led the MIAA in points (26) with nine goals and eight assists. Fellow Tiger Maurizio Costa has nine goals as well and sits seventh in the MIAA in points with 19.
FHSU goalkeeper Michael Yantz is tied for the MIAA lead in shutouts with five on the year and has played every minute of every game for the Tigers.
Upper Iowa is led by goalkeeper Connor Rortvedt, who leads the MIAA in save percentage (.873), goals against average (.695) and is second in saves per game (4.93).
The winner of this match will advance to the National Quarterfinals and will take on the winner of the Midwest Region Final between Northwood (Mich.) and Rockhurst on Sunday (Nov. 22).