2023 Week 10 Preview

Week 10 sees the majority of conferences wrap up league play, with a vast number of Australians still in the mix for a conference tournament spot but having not yet wrapped one up. Results this week will decide whether many players’ seasons end on Sunday afternoon, or continue into Week 11 and beyond.

Courtney Butlion and La Salle may have secured their spot in the Atlantic 10 conference tournament, but for Hannah Peric’s Massachusetts and Greta Kraszula’s VCU teams, there remains work to be done in the final week of the regular season as the Atlantic 10 dishes up some Atlantic Tension. Massachusetts currently sit fifth in the league, which sends eight teams to its conference tournament, and a point appears to be all they need to secure a berth in the postseason. However, wins against both 4th placed Saint Joseph’s and 10th placed Fordham would see the Minutewomen guaranteed a top-four berth, which would mean the difference between playing at home or on the road in the quarter-finals. It would likely take a remarkable combination of results for UMass to miss the tournament at this stage, but nonetheless they would certainly like make sure of things as quickly as possible.

However, VCU find themselves in a starkly different position, finding themselves in ninth position but with games to come against 8th placed Loyola Chicago as well as the same Fordham team that UMass will play this weekend. The Rams are certainly a better team than their record shows, routinely dominating opponents on the stat sheet but somehow going five games without a goal before mercifully winning 1-0 against St. Bonaventure last week. Two wins looks to be the only guaranteed path to a conference tournament berth at this stage, but results in each team’s opening game of the week will decide exactly what is required of Kraszula and her team in the season finale against Loyola Chicago on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the Aussies in the SWAC find themselves at either end of the table with three games remaining in the regular season. Aimee Benton and Grambling State saw nearest rivals Jackson State drop a game to Texas Southern last week, meaning a draw will now be enough for the Tigers to maintain a three-point advantage atop the table. However, a loss would see the teams tied and also see Jackson State own the head-to-head tiebreaker, so points are a must if Grambling State are to maintain control of the title race and top seed in the conference tournament.

At the other end of the table, Alabama State and their Aussie duo of Grace Norbury and Madi Chambers secured a win over Jacquelline Kambere and Mississippi Valley State that lifted them into the conference tournament spots, but with a number of teams around them in the standings facing off in the next two weeks, continuing to win is the only option. This week sees the Hornets take on fifth placed Texas Southern, who picked up that upset win over Jackson State last week and find themselves in good recent form, picking up three wins and a draw in their last four games. Following that game comes a crucial matchup with Prairie View A&M, as depending on results earlier in the week, the Hornets could jump the Panthers with a win in this game.

Jacquelline Kambere and Mississippi Valley State aren’t to be counted out quite yet, either. However, with a bye this week before their final game against Alcorn State, they will be left to cheer on other results that keep them in with a shot of qualifying if they can muster three points on the final day of the regular season.

The sole Big Ten team featuring an Aussie this season, Bel Rolley’s Illinois find themselves on the outside looking in heading into the final week of league play, and whilst it won’t be easy to hoist themselves up the table at this stage, the Fighting Illini remain in the mix at this stage. Currently sitting in 10th, the team in orange and blue are two points out of the conference tournament qualification places and face a pair of top-four teams to round out the season. Those two opponents, Michigan State and Nebraska, each sit only a point off conference leaders Penn State, so still have plenty to play for themselves at this stage. However, it is worth remembering that Illinois pushed a top-15 Wisconsin team all the way in a 1-0 loss, falling to a goal in the final 10 seconds after perhaps having the better of the second half, so the Illini certainly have enough about them to secure results in both games and give themselves a shot at the postseason.

Bronte Peel earned Ohio Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Week honours as she fired Little Rock to a win over Eastern Illinois last week, a result that moved the Trojans into seventh position and, as things stand, a conference tournament berth. However, the final week of league play sees the Aussie-laden side take on two vastly different opponents in their quest to maintain that position. Their first opponent, Western Illinois, sit three points below Little Rock and a win would eliminate the Leathernecks as a rival for a tournament berth. However, their final day opponent, Tennessee Tech, sit five points clear atop the conference, with six wins and a draw in their seven conference games to this point. Fortunately, a win over Western Illinois may be enough to secure a tournament berth regardless of the result against Tennessee Tech. If Peel continues to fire, though, six points are certainly within the realms of possibility.

The Southland Conference regular season will extend into Week 11, but for Molly Arens and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, their schedule will wrap up this weekend as they have the bye on the final matchday. Much like Massachusetts in the Atlantic 10, only a remarkable set of results going against them would knock the Islanders out of contention, but they can render that point moot with a result against either Lamar or McNeese State. However, not only would picking up points in both games secure their tournament berth, it would also give them a chance of finishing third, the current position occupied by McNeese State. Meanwhile, Caitlin Le Roux and Northwestern State sit equal sixth and take on Houston Christian, the very team with which they are tied. Given their final opponent is a Nicholls State team that is yet to score a point in conference play, a win this week gives the Demons a gilt-edged chance to not only secure their postseason spot but also make a late move up the table.

Full Schedule

Alabama State (Madison Chambers, Grace Norbury)

This week: v Texas Southern – 10:00AM, Saturday October 21; v Prairie View – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Bellarmine (Teagan Douglas)

This week: v Eastern Ky. – 4:00AM, Sunday October 22

Butler (Claire Farrington)

This week: v Seton Hall – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Georgetown – 4:00AM, Monday October 23

Central Michigan (Shivani Battaglia)

This week: @ Bowling Green – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; v NIU – 4:00AM, Monday October 23

Coastal Carolina (Asha McClurg)

This week: v South Alabama – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Marshall – 4:00AM, Monday October 23

Dartmouth (Kate Ryan)

This week: v Princeton – 6:00AM, Sunday October 22

Denver (Isabella Chidiac)

This week: @ North Dakota St. – 10:30AM, Friday October 20; @ North Dakota – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Eastern Kentucky (Sophie MacAlpine)

This week: @ Bellarmine – 4:00AM, Sunday October 22

Grambling State (Aimee Benton)

This week: v Jackson St. – 8:00AM, Saturday October 21; v Southern U. – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Hawaii (Eliza Ammendolia)

This week: v UC Santa Barbara – 4:00PM, Friday October 20; v Cal Poly – 1:00PM, Monday October 23

Illinois (Isabel Rolley)

This week: @ Michigan St. – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; v Nebraska – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Kent State (Lua Suero)

This week: v Western Mich. – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Toledo – 4:00AM, Monday October 23

La Salle (Courtney Butlion)

This week: v Loyola Chicago – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Davidson – 4:30AM, Monday October 23

Little Rock (Cameron Barreiro, Emily Jensen, Candice Kilderry, Bronte Peel)

This week: v Western Ill. – 3:00PM, Friday October 20; @ Tennessee Tech – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Long Island (Matilda Boyle, Isabella Stein)

This week: @ Delaware St. – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Louisiana (Emma Bates)

This week: v Arkansas St. – 11:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Troy – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Maine (Lara Kirkby)

This week: @ Binghamton – 3:00AM, Monday October 23

Massachusetts (Hannah Peric)

This week: v Saint Joseph’s – 6:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Fordham – 4:00AM, Monday October 23

Morehead State (Natasha Tanner)

This week: v Tennessee Tech – 7:00AM, Friday October 20; @ SIUE – 6:00AM, Monday October 23

Northwestern State (Caitlin Le Roux)

This week: v Houston Christian – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Oral Roberts (Layla Lopez)

This week: v South Dakota St. – 11:00AM, Friday October 20; v South Dakota – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

Oregon State (Katie Godden)

This week: @ Stanford – 1:00PM, Friday October 20; @ California – 7:00AM, Monday October 23

Pacific (Libby Davy)

This week: @ Saint Mary’s (CA) – 9:00AM, Sunday October 22

Rider (Eloise Jones)

This week: @ Niagara – 3:00AM, Sunday October 22

Santa Clara (Holly Furphy)

This week: v LMU (CA) – 7:00AM, Sunday October 22

Siena (Iona Snape)

This week: @ Mount St. Mary’s – 4:00AM, Sunday October 22

Southern Illinois (Chantelle Symes)

This week: @ Missouri St. – 11:00AM, Friday October 20

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (Molly Arens)

This week: v Lamar University – 11:00AM, Saturday October 21; v McNeese – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

UAB (Abbey Burns)

This week: @ Memphis – 11:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Tulsa – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

UMBC (Isobel Davy, Annaliese Grove)

This week: @ New Hampshire – 5:00AM, Monday October 23

UNC Asheville (Jasmine Barry)

This week: @ Charleston So. – 4:00AM, Sunday October 22

USC (Talia Grossman)

This week: @ Arizona St. – 1:00PM, Friday October 20; @ Arizona – 7:00AM, Monday October 23

VCU (Greta Kraszula)

This week: v Fordham – 10:00AM, Friday October 20; @ Loyola Chicago – 4:30AM, Monday October 23

About Lachy 386 Articles
Founder of College Matildas. An Australian women's football fan who also happens to be a college sports fan. Often found at A-League Women or NPLW games.

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