SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – As the final weekend of non-conference play arrives, Oral Roberts, Purdue Fort Wayne, and Eastern Illinois all built some momentum recently as those three programs all picked up a pair of wins in the last 10 days. League play is looming as that begins with a pair of matches on Saturday, Sept. 28.
• Purdue Fort Wayne has won three of its last four including a 2-1 victory over Belmont that saw Blake Cearns net the brace and earn the latest Offensive Player of the Week award.
• The Mastodons kept up their winning ways on Tuesday with a 1-0 victory over Green Bay. Alex Frank tallied the game-winner in that one with a 55th-minute strike while Tor Erik Larsen earned the three-save shutout.
• Denver's six-match road trip to open the campaign ended with its first victory, a 1-0 victory over California. Goalkeeper Will Palmquist registered a career-high eight saves in the shutout to earn Defensive Player of the Week honors.
• A brutal schedule does not get any easier despite returning home as eighth-ranked SMU (6-0-0) awaits the Pioneers on Saturday.
• Oral Roberts' latest victory was of the dramatic variety as defender Gustavo Vargas cleaned up a corner kick in double-overtime to give the Golden Eagles a 2-1 victory over Valpo.
• Two days earlier, ORU defeated Houston Baptist 4-1 behind four different goal scorers. Forward Dante Brigida netted his league-leading fifth of the season.
• Brigida (five goals) and teammate Reed Berry (four goals, two assists) share the league-lead with 10 points.
• Eastern Illinois was on both ends of a 1-0 decision last week, first picking up a win over Bradley before falling to Northwestern.
• Goalkeeper Jonathan Burke had a six-save shutout against the Braves and stopped three more shots against the Wildcats.
• The Panthers are on a nine-day break before resuming play with Belmont on Sept. 24.
• Omaha followed up a 1-1 tie with Michigan with a gut-wrenching 2-1 loss to cross-town rival Creighton on Monday. The Mavericks got on the board first with a goal by Seth Rinderknecht in the 26th-minute, but the Bluejays got the equalizer 12 minutes later, then got the go-ahead goal in the 88th-minute to secure the win.
• At 0-4-2, the Mavericks will try to get that elusive first win of the season at Air Force on Saturday.
• Western Illinois is also still seeking its first win of the season after being dealt a pair of one-goal losses here recently. Northwestern defeated the Leathernecks 3-2 and scored the game-winner in the 87th-minute last Thursday before Drake saw its goal in the 25th-minute hold up in a 1-0 victory on Tuesday.
• WIU goalkeeper Tim Trilk leads the league in saves so far with 40 and will try to lead the Leathernecks to a triumph Saturday at Kansas City.
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