The No. 8 Concordia Eagles are on to the NAIA Final Site for the second consecutive season, after a 4-0 win over (RV) Corban at Biola University on Saturday, November 23, in the NAIA Opening Round.
Concordia, the No. 14 seed, scored first at 24:32 when GSAC Player of the Year Adrian Padilla was on the receiving end of a pass from Isaac Gettis to Chris Rodriguez. Padilla put it home top shelf for his sixth of the season. Corban started the game with a lot of energy, pin-balling the ball around. It took time for Concordia to adjust and get comfortable. After the Concordia goal, Corban was able to get three corner kicks and fired four shots, with two on goal.
The score remained 1-0 until the 53:23 mark, when Concordia goal leader Mario Soto was left with an open net as Ray Estrada sent him a through ball that allowed Soto to advance around the keeper for his 12th of the season. Soto was at it again 11 minutes later, when Rayane Bouarroudj fed Chris Rodriguez, who set Soto up for the one-touch goal. Rodriguez found his first goal of the year two minutes later when Alex Antonescu started the offense from the back line with a long ball, that Soto flipped backwards to set up Rodriguez, who sent it home from 30 yards out.
"It took us a little while to settle in, but once we were able to settle the ball to the ground and touch it there, we were able to take control of the game," Rodriguez said.
Jordan Brinkley was outstanding in goal for Concordia, making seven saves to earn his second of the season, improving to 14-4. Jordan Farr played the majority of the game between the frame for Corban, making three saves and allowing the four goals to drop to 13-2-2.
"As the game went on, their energy went down a bit, and the game opened up and we were able to do what we do," Concordia head coach Chris Gould said. "I am so glad our guys are going back again, what a great testament to our program."
Concordia outshot Corban 22-12 and 8-7 in shots on goal. Corban, the No. 17 seed, ended their season at 16-2-2. Concordia will head back to the site of their quarterfinal finish a year ago, the Emory Folmar YMCA Sports Complex in Montgomery, AL to face the third seed, Oklahoma Wesleyan, on Monday, December 2.