No. 13-ranked Concordia won their second-straight GSAC Tournament Championship in a come-from-behind victory over No. 20 Biola, 3-2, at Eagles Field in Irvine, CA on Saturday afternoon, November 16, .
The top two tournament seeds were tied late in the game at two. Isaac Gettis set Adrian Padilla up for a shot, which was blocked by Biola keeper JT Addington, but Gettis was right there to punch it back through at the 84:54 mark.
Biola scored the lone goal of the first half when Daniel Chew put home a rebound from Joey O'Keefe's shot that was blocked on the goal line by a Concordia defender.
Concordia tied the game at 58:59 as Gettis got his first goal of the day, seventh of the season, when he one-touched a through ball from Ray Estrada. Six minutes later Biola regained the lead when O'Keefe crossed it from the left side. Concordia keeper Jordan Brinkley committed to block the cross and Chew flipped it in before Brinkley could close. Nearly 11 minutes later at 75:56 Estrada went streaking down the right side of the box and was fouled as he turned the corner. Mario Soto finished the penalty kick for his 11th goal of the year to tie the game. Nine minutes later Gettis and Padilla combined for the GSAC Tournament-winning goal.
The game promised to be hard fought and physical, and it did not disappoint. A total of 18 fouls were called on the home Eagles, compared to nine for the visiting Eagles. Two yellow cards were issued to each squad. Biola fired 15 shots with eight on frame and Concordia took 14, with six on goal. Soto and Gettis each took four shots, with Soto getting two great looks in the second half that sailed high.
"Give credit to Biola in the first half and they limited what we are about," Concordia head coach Chris Gould said. "We talked about flipping that in the second half. The response from our guys was absolutely incredible. That is what college soccer is all about. I'm humbled to be part of this group."
Biola had one good chance late, as they fired a free kick from 40 yards that was blocked by the Concordia wall. Addington made three saves for Biola and fell to 14-3-1 while Brinkley made six saves for Concordia, going to 13-4. Concordia improved to 14-4 and Biola fell to 14-4-1.
With the win Concordia claimed their second-straight GSAC Tournament Championship and earned the automatic bid to the NAIA Men's Soccer National Championship, marking their sixth trip in program history.
Concordia head coach Chris Gould was voted GSAC Coach of the Year for the men and women. Both his squads won the GSAC Regular-Season and Tournament Championships. All firsts for the conference and the university.
The final regular-season poll will be released at 4 p.m. CST on Sunday, Nov. 17, while the final Modified Ratings Percentage Index (MRPI) and the 32 national championship qualifiers will be announced at 7:30 p.m. CST. The Men's Soccer National Championship Opening Round pairings will be unveiled on Monday, Nov. 18 at 1 p.m. CST via a live graphical show.
NAIA National Championship Live Video-Streaming Schedule via NeuLion – 2013 Fall events
(subject to change)
• Men's Soccer National Championship: Dec. 2 – 7 (15 matches)
• Women's Soccer National Championship: Dec. 2 – 7 (15 matches)
• Volleyball National Championship: Dec. 3 – 7 (47 matches)