LANCASTER, Pa. - A week after jumping from being unranked all the way into the top-10, the Franklin & Marshall men's soccer team moved up three spots to secure a No. 5 ranking in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Continental Tire Division III National Poll released Tuesday. The Diplomats also retained the top position in the Mid-Atlantic Regional Poll.
F&M remained unbeaten last week with a pair of victories at the Shellenberger Memorial Classic hosted by Lynchburg. The Diplomats took down the host Hornets 3-2 in overtime on Saturday, before capping off the tournament championship with a 2-1 victory over Roanoke on Sunday.
Last weekend's wins moves the Diplomats record to 4-0, giving the program its best start since the 2007 season.
The Diplomats will be back in action tomorrow for the annual Smith-Herr Boot game opposite Elizabethtown. Wednesday's matchup will mark the 35th meeting between the two sides in the historic cross-county rivalry.
Elizabethtown holds a 24-7-3 edge in The Battle of the Boot. The annual showdown began in 1977 and has been played each year since - aside from a rainout in the 2010 season. F&M is 2-14 overall in contests at Elizabethtown, and 5-10-3 at home. The two sides have gone back-and-forth in recent years, with the Blue Jays holding a slight 5-4-1 series advantage in the last 10 meetings.
F&M blanked the Blue Jays 2-0 last season on Tylus Field. With the victory, the Smith-Herr Bronze Boot returned to the F&M campus. The bronze boot is a soccer shoe originally worn by Al Hershey, who was a two-time All-American at Elizabethtown before later coaching the Blue Jays and F&M. The boot is named for Robert Smith, who coached F&M from 1947 to 1963, and Ira R. Herr, who coached Elizabethtown from 1938 to 1948 and 1958 to 1960.