In baseball, analytics is more than just numbers.
After the Eden Prairie High School boys soccer team ended its regular season with a 3-0 win at Wayzata, the Eagles were awarded Section 2AA’s No. 4 seed.
As such, Eden Prairie would host a home playoff game, or not.
“We’re going to play Jefferson (No. 5 seeded Bloomington Jefferson) at Jefferson,” said Eden Prairie coach Rob St. Clair.
“We play better on the road,” said St. Clair.
Eden Prairie is 4-3-3 at home, 4-2-0 on the road.
Call it an educated hunch.
On Thursday, Eden Prairie ended its regular season with a 3-0 shutout of Wayzata.
“The best game we’ve played all year,” said St. Clair.
Tyler Beaupre scored twice, Luke Hernandez once.
On Tuesday, Oct. 1, Eden Prairie and Bloomington Jefferson battled to a 3-3 tie.
“And it took five minutes to get there,” said St. Clair.
A Hernandez goal with four minutes remaining made it 3-2. Carver Magnini’s goal, with 40 seconds remaining, knotted the score at 3-3.
Question: Which game was better prep for the playoffs.
“If I say we’re ready,” said St. Clair, “I’m going to base it on what happened Thursday.”
On Thursday, Eden Prairie kept the ball on the ground and controlled the clock. When it had chances, it finished.
On Tuesday, Eden Prairie struggled with the rainy conditions.
“They’re a good team,” said St. Clair, of facing Jefferson, “and they’re really good with their set pieces.
“If we’re going to beat them,” he added, “we’re going to have to stay out of those situations.”
“To get out of this section, we’re going to have to play three great games,” said St. Clair, “If that first one isn’t great, we won’t be talking about the next one.”
Edina was awarded with the No. 1 seed, Shakopee the No. 2 and Minnetonka the No. 3.
Section semifinals are scheduled for Thursday at high seed, section finals for Tuesday, Oct. 15.