STU men’s soccer team wins NAIA first round

Saturday, December 2, 2017 0 Comments

St. Thomas University men’s soccer team (14-1-1) defeated Truett McConnell (16-4-2) 2-0 in the opening round of the NAIA National Championship last week at Bobcat Field.

With the win, the Bobcats advance to the NAIA National Championships Round of 16 at the 2017 NAIA men's Soccer National Championship final site in Delray Beach, Florida. It marked the first time in school history that the STU men's soccer team won an NAIA Opening Round game.

Tomas Greco scored the game-winning goal in the 27th minute.  Greco then provided the assist to Pedro Silva who scored to give the Bobcats a 2-0 lead in the 78th minute. For Greco, it marked his sixth goal of the season and his team-best eighth assist of the year. For Silva, the goal was his third of the year.

Goalkeeper Connor Christie and the Bobcat defense shut out the Bears for the full 90 minutes. Christie recorded five saves, including two spectacular diving stops on TMU’s one-on-one opportunities.

The Bobcat defense held the Bears to just nine total shots, and only three shots in the second half, en route to STU's ninth shutout in 16 games this season. It marked the third consecutive shutout for Christie and the Bobcats, all coming in postseason play. Dating back to the regular season. STU has registered shutouts in six of its last seven contests.

The Bobcats continued their staggering goal differential on the season. STU has now outscored opponents 54-12 on the year.

Next up for the Bobcats was a match in the round of 16 against either Mobile (Ala.) or Houston-Victoria (Texas) on November 28 at the Seacrest Soccer Complex in Delray Beach, the final site of the NAIA National Championships.

The NAIA opening round victory comes on the heels of the Bobcats wiinning the Sun Conference Tournament Championship, sweeping both the regular season and conference tournament championship with a perfect record in league play.

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