Heading into the final weekend of 2013, the Dukes sit in 5th place with nine points, but remain only two points clear of the teams tied for ninth, St Bonaventure and Fordham. In between the Dukes and elimination, Dayton and George Washington have eight points while UMass and Duquesne are tied at nine.
Normally, I’d feel pretty good about Duquesne’s chances of getting through but they face off against the A-10′s second and third place team on Rooney Field this weekend with George Mason coming on Friday and VCU on Sunday. Thankfully, St Bonaventure plays the same two teams at home. Fordham presents a greater threat to surpass the Dukes as their trip to Philadelphia gives them an easier final two matches. While LaSalle surprisingly sits in fourth place, they still don’t strike me as a lock to beat Fordham at home. St Joe’s has struggled all year even if they did shock VCU last weekend. Fordham should take at least three points home from Philadelphia. Interestingly, the Dukes could make the A-10 field if UMass loses to Dayton and St Louis at home this weekend.
Of course, the Dukes likely secure a spot in the A-10′s with one win this weekend and they seem due to beat a top team after playing so many close early in the season. A draw and a loss probably leaves a lot to chance, but it could do the trick as well. Even if Duquesne looks in command at the moment, they still have work to do or hope St Joe’s does the work for them.
Dukes currently hold the tiebreaker advantage against St Bonaventure (head to head win) and UMass (goal differential).
Dukes currently lose the tiebreaker against Dayton (head to head loss), Fordham and GW (record vs mutual opponents).
If UMass draw against either Dayton or St Louis and the Dukes lose to VCU and draw against George Mason, the tiebreaker favors UMass.
If Fordham splits their weekend games and Duquesne draws against VCU, the Dukes would likely win the tiebreaker by virtue of goal differential. Duquesne is currently +6 over Fordham.