Washington is top seed; Hopkins here Friday in conference semifinal

CHESTERTOWN — The 2023 Centennial Conference men’s soccer semifinals will feature the same matchups as the 2022 tournament following quarterfinal wins from Muhlenberg and Johns Hopkins on Tuesday night, Oct. 31.

In Baltimore, No. 4 seed Hopkins (10-4-4) blanked No. 5 Swarthmore, 4-0, scoring three second-half goals — including a man-down goal.

The Blue Jays will travel to Chestertown for a Friday night (7 p.m.) match-up with top-seed Washington.

The cost is $10 for adults and $5 for ages 6 through high school.

The Shoremen are 11-1-5; their only loss is 2-0 at home to the Blue Jays on Oct. 18.

“We are thrilled to be hosting a semifinal with a chance to host a final. We had a great crowd for our final regular season match, and they helped push us during a very intense and challenging game,” Washington coach Roy Dunshee told The Evening Enterprise in an email Thursday.
 
He was referring to Washington’s 2-1 victory over Franklin & Marshall. Ben Strine scored both Shoremen goals; what held up as the game-winner came in the 57th minute.
 
“We look forward to having our fans with us this weekend and bringing some joy to Chestertown,” Dunshee said.  
 
He described the 2023 team as “fantastic.”
 
“They are very supportive of each other and very professional in their approach to training and preparation,” Dunshee wrote in Thursday’s email . “We are all really focused on finding our potential and seeing how long we can keep playing. 
 
“We’d love to keep this group together as long as possible. To do that, we will need to win some more games.”
 
The other semifinal features No. 3 seed Muhlenberg at No. 2 seed F&M (13-2-2).
 
On Tuesday night, in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Muhlenberg (12-3-2) held off No. 6 seed Dickinson, 2-1, to secure its first CC home playoff win in 20 years.
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NOTES: In a preseason coaches poll, Johns Hopkins was favored to win the conference crown, leading a contingent of three schools that received first-place votes.
 
Hopkins earned eight first-place votes and 79 points. Franklin & Marshall (72) and defending champion Muhlenberg (58) also secured one first-place vote apiece and finished second and third, respectively. 

Gettysburg (57) was one point behind Muhlenberg in fourth place, while Washington (56) and Dickinson (40) were also projected to make the six-team playoff field.
 
Swarthmore (33), Haverford (21), McDaniel (21) and Ursinus (13) rounded out the poll. 

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