It’s playoff time for the Weber State University women’s soccer team.
The Wildcats finished the regular season by winning the Big Sky Conference championship and will host the conference tournament beginning Oct. 31. WSU head coach Tim Crompton said his team is looking forward to defending their home turf.
“There is a normality to what you’re doing on a day-to-day basis,” Crompton said. “The girls are confident. There are a couple teams in the tournament that they would like to play again.”
The ‘Cats went 7–1–1 in conference play. They received a first-round bye and will host the winner of a first-round matchup between Northern Arizona University and the University of Montana.
WSU sophomore defender Haley Thomas said she believes her team matches up well with NAU.
“When it comes to NAU, our style of play is similar,” Thomas said. “They like to put it down in play as we do. Montana tries to boot the ball over the top and get lucky.”
When the Wildcats take the field Nov. 2, it will be 14 days since they last played a game. Crompton thinks the layoff will benefit his team.
“It should be helpful,” Crompton said. “You get towards the end of the season, and you need rest. The girls are beat up. We played the last three games with injuries to starters.”
Weber State will be making their first appearance in the Big Sky tournament since 2015. The ‘Cats have not won a playoff game since 2013, when they advanced to the NCAA Women’s College Cup.
Senior midfielder Chansi Crompton, Tim’s daughter, has been with the Wildcats since 2012. She said the opportunity to host the tournament in her final year is special.
“I’ve never hosted, and I’ve been here a while,” Chansi Crompton said. “I remember coming when I was little, and the atmosphere is really cool. We are excited and ready to go.”
The tournament will kick off at the Wildcat Soccer Field on Oct. 31. The University of Northern Colorado will battle Eastern Washington in the first game of the day for the right to take on the University of Idaho Vandals two days later.
The Lumberjacks and Grizzlies contest will take place at 3 p.m., with the winner awaiting the Wildcats at the same time on Nov. 2. The championship game will be held Nov. 4 at noon.
Tim Crompton said the tournament will come down to a matter of his squad staying focused.
“Every team that is in the tournament presents challenges or create problems that you have to overcome,” Tim Crompton said. “Each one is different. You have to be prepared to deal with whatever is in front of you.”
Weber State hosted both Northern Arizona and Montana in the regular season. The matchup with the Lumberjacks resulted in a scoreless tie, while the ‘Cats knocked off the Grizzlies 2–1 on Senior Day.
WSU’s only loss in conference play came in a 2–0 defeat at Idaho in the penultimate game of the regular season.