With three matches in its 16-game league season completed, FC Tucson sits in a tie for fourth in its division.
It might seem like the middle of the pack in the nine-team Southwest Division of the USL Premier Development League isn't the most ideal place to be.
But think of the Old Pueblo's new semipro soccer team as Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I'll Have Another.
Just like the colt in its two wins in the Triple Crown, FC Tucson is in a good position with time to catch up to the leader.
While FC Tucson has six points in three matches, Orange County Blue Star tops the group with 12 points and the Fresno Fuego is second with 11. Those two clubs, however, have already played six league matches. The third-place team, the Ventura County Fusion, has seven points but has played one more match than FC Tucson.
Tucson hosts the Pali Blues tonight at Kino Sports Complex North Field No. 5.
"Overall, we're right about where I thought we would be," coach Rick Schantz said this week. "I think we're gaining confidence in what we're good at, which is our defense. … I've found out over the last couple weeks that there's not going to be any cupcakes in this league."
A 1-0 win at the Blues on May 12 started the team's current three-match win streak. FC Tucson defeated the visiting Phoenix Monsoon 4-2 in a nonleague game Wednesday. Tucson's goal tally in that match was more than its total in all three league games.
"The area that's taking time (to jell) is scoring goals," Schantz said. "Finishing is the last thing to come."
He said the team needs to work on "the ability to get it done in the final third - guys aren't quite sure who's going to make runs and where they need to be. Some of that comes from playing together."
USL PDL standings / B9
• What: Pali Blues at FC Tucson
• Where: Kino Sports Complex North Field No.5
• When: 7 p.m.