The Chattanooga Football Club might not be exactly where it wants to be entering the Women's Premier Soccer League Southeast Division playoffs, but that doesn't mean the first-year team is not in a good spot for Saturday.
The Chattanooga FC women (5-3-2) will be the third seed behind the Nashville FC Wolves and Alabama FC. They will face that Alabama club, with whom they split season matches, at 6 p.m. in Oak Mountain, Ala. The Wolves will face the winner of the Friday night match between the Knoxville Lady Force and Georgia Revolution.
CFC had to play shorthanded last Saturday night in a draw against Nashville in their last regular-season match. The Chattanooga women were down four starters from the start, then lost starting center midfielder Jaimee Cooper to cramps and leading goal scorer Kristina Heredia to a concussion.
Coach Patrick Winecoff still was disappointed with the result, especially since CFC missed on a penalty-kick opportunity with about five minutes left in regulation.
"If we win that match, we win the conference," Winecoff said Sunday.
The Alabama women (6-4) defeated the Knoxville Force 2-0 on Sunday, which gave them 18 points for the season -- one more than CFC. Alabama defeated CFC 1-0 when the teams faced off on June 6 in Huntsville, but the Chattanooga side won 3-0 at Finley Stadium a week later.
The semifinals winners will play for the championship Sunday in Birmingham.
The Chattanooga FC men officially announced Tuesday that Finley Stadium will be the host site for the National Premier Soccer League playoffs, which begin Friday.
The CFC men (8-2-2, 7-1-2) finished in a tie with the Atlanta Silverback Reserves at the top of the Southeast Division standings but are the top seed due to their advantage in goal differential. The Silverbacks will face the New Orleans Jesters at 5 in the first match of the evening, with CFC facing Nashville FC at 8.
The championship match will be at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Tickets will be $10 both online and at the gate Friday and Saturday, but a $15 two-day ticket will get fans in all three games.
Contact Gene Henley at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6311. Follow him at twitter.com/genehenleytfp.