With the regular season concluding Saturday, the Laredo Heat SC finished as the No. 2 seed in the NPSL's Lone Star Conference.
The Laredo Heat SC finished as the No. 2 seed in the Lone Star Conference as the regular season concluded Saturday.
The Heat (7-1-2, 23 points) stayed alive for the No. 1 seed by routing the Temple Coyotes FC 5-0 Friday night at the TAMIU Soccer Complex. They needed a loss or draw from Denton to secure the top spot, but the Diablos (8-1-1, 25 points) scored twice in the final 15 minutes to win 2-0 on the road over the Midland-Odessa Sockers FC.
As a result, Laredo will host the Sockers (5-2-3, 18 points) in an 8 p.m. game Wednesday at the TAMIU Soccer Complex to open the postseason. The match will serve as somewhat of a tiebreaker as the Heat won both matchups in the series in 2018 and Midland swept in 2019. In their first attempt at breaking the tie, the teams drew 1-1 in Midland on June 17.
Friday night’s win by the Heat wound up eliminating the Coyotes (4-6-0, 12 points) who entered the final week holding on to the fourth and final playoff spot. Katy 1895 FC (4-4-2, 14 points) rolled 5-1 Saturday over the FC Brownsville Explorers to claim a playoff berth. Katy will face Denton on Wednesday in the conference semifinals.
If the Heat win Wednesday, they will face the winner between Denton and Katy on Saturday. The matchup would either see Laredo travel to face Denton or stay home to welcome Katy. The Heat handed the Diablos their only loss of the season winning 3-2 on June 3, and Laredo followed up a 2-2 road draw against Katy on May 22 with a 1-0 victory at home on June 30.
Tickets for the playoff opener are $5 for general admission and $20 for VIP access, and they are available now through laredoheatsc.com. Children 12 and under get in free. Fans are encouraged to bring their own food and drinks to the game as there are no concessions due to COVID-19 protocols.