By Jamie Belfer || Sports Editor
As the regular season for fall 2019 sports is winding down, teams are revving up to prepare for their first playoff games. F&M Field Hockey, Volleyball, and Men’s Soccer will be competing in the Centennial Conference playoffs in hopes of winning a championship. These teams have had successful seasons with winning records and huge victories to earn a spot in the playoffs.
The F&M Volleyball team started off their season on a hot streak, winning the first four games of the regular season. After a tough first 3-2 loss to Clarkson at the North Country Invitational, the Diplomats bounced back with two more impressive victories. Once conference play began, the Diplomats were unbeatable. F&M defeated all of their conference opponents in dominant victories of either 3-0 or 3-1. Their sole loss came in their final conference game of the season to Johns Hopkins, making their conference record 9-1 and overall record 19-5. The Diplomats earned the no. 2 seed in the playoffs and will be facing off against McDaniel, the no. 3 seed, on Saturday, November 9. The Diplomats are seeking redemption against the Green Terror as they were defeated by McDaniel 3-0 in the semifinal round of the 2018 Centennial Conference playoffs. However, the Diplomats have proved they can contend with McDaniel as they defeated them 3-1, earlier in the regular season. If the Diplomats get past the Green Terror, they will face the winner of Johns Hopkins (no. 1 seed) and Haverford (no. 4 seed) to fight for a conference championship.
The F&M Field Hockey team has had a similarly successful regular season. They got off to a fantastic start, winning the first eight games until falling to Messiah in a close 3-2 game. The Diplomats bounced back, and continued to dominate by winning the final 7 out of 8 final regular season games. Similar to F&M Volleyball, the Diplomat Field Hockey team lost a close game to Johns Hopkins in their final game of the season. Although they tried to stage a fortuitous comeback, they ultimately fell to Johns Hopkins 2-1. The Diplomats finished 15-2 overall and 9-1 in the conference to earn the no. 2 seed in the playoffs. They will face off against Ursinus (no. 3 seed) on Friday, November 8 in hopes of reaching the Centennial Conference Championship. If they defeat Ursinus, they will then play the winner of no. 1 Johns Hopkins and no. 4 Bryn Mawr. If both F&M and Johns Hopkins make it to the finals, it will be the third year in a row that it would be a Diplomat, Blue Jay finale. Both teams have each won once, so the Diplomats hope to tip the scale and come up with a victory.
The F&M Men’s Soccer team’s overall record mirrors the Field Hockey team’s record of 15-2. After losing their second game of the season to Stockton 1-0, the Diplomats battled to win their next eight games. F&M Men’s Soccer finished with an 8-1 record in the conference, with their only loss being to Johns Hopkins. However, the Diplomats defeated their final three competitors and ended their regular season with a defeat of McDaniel, 7-0. Even with their sole conference loss to Johns Hopkins, the Diplomats were able to secure the no. 1 overall seed in the playoffs. The Diplomats will play the no. 5 seed Gettysburg in the semifinals on Saturday, November 9. If they win, they will face the winner of Johns Hopkins (no. 2 seed) and Dickinson (no. 3 seed). The Diplomats look to rebound after losing a 3-2 loss in double overtime to Haverford in the conference championship.
As the stakes are raised, the Diplomats must continue to play at their best to have a magical ending to round out their fantastic regular seasons.
Sophomore Jamie Belfer is the Sports Editor. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.