Memphis Americans NISL Playoff Schedule Announced
On Wednesday, the National Indoor Soccer League announced the playoff format and schedule for both the men’s and women’s divisions. The entirety of the playoffs will take place Sunday May 14 at Addition Financial Arena in Orlando and that does include both men and women. How does this shape up for the Americans?
On both the men’s side and the women’s side only three of the five teams in the league qualified for the playoffs. The format being used for both divisions is a semi-final between the 2-seed and the 3-seed followed by the final between the winner of the semi-final and the 1-seed. Each of the two semi-final games will be a mini-game meaning that while every game is typically four 15-minute quarters, the semi-final games will instead be two 15-minute halves. The final for both the men and the women, however, will return to the regular game format of four 15-minute quarters.
The Americans men’s team is the #2-seed after finishing the regular season with a record of 8-5 and a +44 goal difference. They are surging into the playoffs having won their last three games, including a pair of beatdowns over the Fayetteville Fury last weekend (20-2 on Sunday and 13-0 on Monday). They drew the #3-seed Tampa Bay Strikers, who are managed by former Super Bowl-winning kicker Martin Gramatica. There is some bad blood between these two teams as, back in March, a brawl erupted post-game outside of the locker rooms which resulted in the suspension of several players including Americans player/coach Corey Adamson. The Americans won both of those games by respective scores of 11-4 and 9-5. The winner of this semi-final mini-game advances to the final to take on the #1-seed Central Florida Crusaders with a record of 13-2 and a +76 goal difference.
The Americans women’s team is not only the reigning champions, they are also the #1-seed in the playoffs for the second straight year after finishing the regular season with a record of 10-3 and a +28 goal difference. They have the best form of any of the women’s teams heading into the playoffs with four straight wins. While the league is known for high scoring affairs, the Americans women’s team has been stout defensively having only conceded 36 goals the whole season (the next best team conceded 62 goals). As the #1-seed they get a bye into the final and await the winner of the Central Florida Crusaders and Tampa Bay Strikers.
The schedule is as follows. All games are on Sunday, May 14 and will be played at Addition Financial Arena in Orlando (home of the Central Florida Crusaders, though the main tenant is UCF basketball). The women’s semi-final kicks off at 1pm (12pm Central Time) with the men’s semi-final to follow immediately after the conclusion of the women’s semi-final. The proceedings stop for a minute with an Awards Presentation at 3pm before the women’s final at 4pm and the men’s final immediately thereafter. Streaming details have not been announced but during the regular season all games were available on YouTube.
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