This weekend's games will set table for M2 chase to championship weekend
MUSKEGON, Michigan – Although the three weekend games in Major Arena Soccer 2 this weekend won’t finalize its playoff picture, it will go a long way in potentially determining who will make it to Wichita for the league finals in mid-July.
All three games have been designated as part of the Great Lakes Invitational, a third such series of games in M2’s regular season that is helping to determine the four-team playoff field for the finals to be held July 17 and 18 at Hartman Arena in Wichita.
The winner of the GLI will gain an automatic berth to the playoffs, where they will be joined by the Wings and Amarillo Bombers. Those two teams won the Heartland Invitational and Rocky Mountain invitationals respectively, held earlier in the season. The fourth and final playoff team will be the team with the best M2 regular season record which has not already qualified by winning one of the three tournaments.
Muskegon’s Mercy Health Arena will be the site of an indoor soccer doubleheader on Saturday, with the Cleveland Crunch meeting the Chicago Mustangs in a 2 p.m. kickoff. The Risers – who are not able to complete the minimum number of games this season to qualify for the post-season because of ongoing pandemic restrictions – will host the Colorado Inferno at 7 p.m. Both games will count in the GLI standings.
Currently, Cleveland is 1-0, while Colorado is 0-1 in the three-games each team will play in the GLI. Colorado will wrap up its GLI play this weekend with a game Sunday in Chicago.
The Mustangs and Crunch will finish up the GLI on May 22 in Cleveland, a game that will ultimately decide who advances. Earlier this month, the Mustangs defeated Crunch in overtime in Chicago. Playoff tiebreakers used – should two teams have the same GLI record following the May 22 showdown – would be head-to-head result, goal differential in GLI games, total GLI goals scored, and then total GLI goals allowed.
“Based on what we’ve seen already, it should be another great weekend of indoor soccer action,” Commissioner Chris Economides said. “All these teams have proven to be worthy adversaries, and honestly, any result this weekend wouldn’t surprise me. When you add in the chase for a potential playoff spot, these games could be even more intense and exciting than what we’ve already seen during the regular season.”
The Wichita Wings and Chicago Mustangs sit atop the M2 standings, which for this season only are being based on winning percentage since the continued Covid-19 outbreak won’t make it possible for each team to play the same number of games. Wichita is 3-0, while Chicago (2-0) opened its regular season last weekend with a pair of exhilarating wins, including one in overtime over the Crunch.
After Saturday’s doubleheader, Colorado and Chicago will travel back to the Windy City’s Grand Sports Arena for a Sunday showdown that will start at 3:05 p.m. Central Daylight Time.
For information on any of the games, visit m2soccer.com, any of the team’s individual websites, or the league and team’s social media platforms. Tickets are available for the games in Muskegon via www.muskegonrisers.com.
Muskegon v Colorado Ticket Link: https://www.etix.com/ticket/p/7422615/muskegon-risers-vs-colorado-inferno-muskegon-mercy-health-arena-risers