With 34 minutes left, the California Baptist University men’s soccer team was down 2-0. They trailed No. 1 seed Fresno Pacific in the game that would determine the 2012 National Christian College Athletic Association men’s soccer National Champion.
Alex Anderson scored and now it is 2-1. Then Paul Oliver heads one in with nine minutes to play. The game is tied. Overtime is looming over the Lancers when forward Anderson passed the ball to outside left midfielder Marc Hope. With 7.8 seconds left in the game, he scored to put CBU ahead 3-2. The Lancers went on to win their second straight NCCAA title.
A season of challenges and nail-biting victories fueled the fire that led CBU to its championship on Saturday.
“We have overcome so much adversity this year, and I am so proud of my team for fighting from 2-0 to come back and win in the last seconds of the game,” said Tyler Garrison, senior kinesiology major and team captain.
The team ended the season with a record of 16-5-2. Hope was named Most Outstanding Offensive Player of the national tournament and Anderson, Hope and sophomore defender Rob White were named to the All-Tournament team.
“I couldn’t do it without my teammates,” Hope, junior marketing major, said. “I love every single one of them and I am blessed to be part of such a great team.”
Following this season, CBU bids farewell to six graduating seniors: Tyler Aagard, Carlos Figueroa, Chase Magdeleno, Brian Ahn, Tyler Garrison and Jonathan Garcia.
“I couldn’t have asked for a more amazing game to end my college career. I have been blessed to be on this team and I am going to miss them all,” said Magdaleno, senior construction management major and defender.
He and Garrison agreed that this win came in the craziest game they have ever played, and to end their college soccer careers with a national championship is an unbelievable feat.
The men’s team was not the only CBU team to come home with a championship, as the women’s soccer team also cultivated a second consecutive NCCAA championship with a win against Southern Nazarene University. The championship game was a lot less complicated for the women’s team as the Lancers won 3-0.
“We definitely wanted to repeat our national title and I think that our strategy was to play our game and play for one another with an audience of one,” Natosha Yanes, junior accounting major and forward, said.
Scoring their first two goals within the first four minutes, the Lancers took a step in the right direction early.
The first goal was scored by Kelly Jenks, and within a minute the ball was put in the back of the net again, this time by Daelyn Paul.
Jenks was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Offensive Player, while Paul was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
Jenks added another goal in the 67th minute to give the Lancers their 3-0 lead.
After providing strong defense throughout the tournament, Chantel Cappuccilli
was deemed the tournament’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player and Lindsay Vesling was named to the All- Tournament team.
“I think that I speak for my team when (I say) we couldn’t be happier with the blessing of each other and our awesome staff,” Yanes said. “Our coaches and (athletic) trainers really pushed us to be better players and better people on and off the field. I am so thankful to have a team I can share two back-to-back conference, regional and national titles with.”
The women’s team says goodbye to three talented senior athletes: Chantel Cappuccilli, Kitra Walters and Daelyn Paul.