Men's Soccer Advances in NAIA Tournament

With a 4-3 victory over University of Texas at Brownsville, Eagles Move Ahead

Nov. 23, 2009 By Jenna Bartlo

BROWNSVILLE, Texas --- Zach Bautista scored a goal and added an assist in regulation as Biola advanced to the second round of the 2009 NAIA Men's Soccer Tournament with a 4-3 shootout victory over University of Texas at Brownsville after playing to a 2-2 draw in regulation on Saturday night.

The Eagles (13-4-3) keep their impressive season going and will face Hastings College (Nebraska) on Tuesday, Dec. 1 at 4:30 p.m. in a second-round match. Hastings defeated Science and Arts (Okla.), 2-1. The remainder of the tournament will take place in Fresno, Calif.

The Scorpions, who were the No. 6 overall seed in the tournament, end the season with a 17-0-2 record and fail to advance in the NAIA tournament for the second consecutive season.

After the two teams battled to a 2-2 draw in regulation, the advancing team would have to be decided on penalty kicks. Biola got the early lead as Cody Shelton converted the spot kick and Aaron Fenlason saved the shot by Enrique Rivera. In the second round, the two teams each scored as Abraham Gomez and Ricky Rodriguez each scored.

In the third round, the Eagles extended the lead to 3-1 as Shalom Bako scored for Biola and Fenlason came up big again, stopping the shot by Omar Apodaca. The fourth round went to the Scorpions as Humberto Toscan missed wide left and Steve Howard converted his shot. But Kennedy Chongo wrapped up the shootout by scoring on his shot attempt to wrap things up.

In regulation, Biola played one of its strongest matches of the year against a very talented group of players from UT-Brownsville and matched the Scorpions blow for blow.

Brownsville opened up the match with a strong attack, creating three legitimate scoring chances in the first two minutes. The first two came on a flurry in front of the box off an early corner. The first shot was a header by Juan Nava, which was knocked down by Fenlason. The rebound was then headed by Omar Apodaca but rattled off the crossbar and was cleared.

The Scorpions constant pressure early turned into a goal in the 28th minute. Mario Perez dribbled down the right side and sent a great cross into the box where Aaron Guerrero was able to win a scramble in the box and head it in. Fenlason had a shot at pulling the ball down ahead of the scramble, but struggled to get his footing in the muddy box.

Biola got the goal back in the 40th minute with a goal by Bautista, who headed home a goal off a strong cross by Tony Montalvo and the teams headed for the half tied at 1-1.

In the second, Biola came out firing, controlling play for the first 20 minutes of the period. 16 minutes into the second half, Bautista flew down the near side and sent a long cross into the box where it found the head of Derek Friehe in the box. Friehe headed the ball past the diving keeper and into the goal for the 2-1 lead.

The Eagles had a great chance to go up 3-1 just 10 minutes later as Friehe found the ball at his feet with the keeper out of position, but his touch shot rattled off the post and was cleared from danger.

UT-Brownsville was able to tie the match in the 71st minute as Enrique Rivera blasted home a rebound after a great save off the first shot. Fenlason made a fantastic shot on the initial breakaway, but after the shot rattled off his chest, it went right to Rivera who was able to score easily.

The teams headed to overtime, but were both gassed. As a result, neither team really had a great chance to score. Biola's lone scoring chance came just a few minutes in as Chongo blasted a shot off the crossbar, but it wound up not counting as a teammate was offside.

Unfortunately, the match officially goes down as a tie which means the Eagles are still looking for their first NAIA win in school history. They are 0-2-3 overall in five matches in the NAIA tournament.

Biola will look for that first win as the remainder of the tournament moves to Fresno, Calif. The second round begins on Monday, November 30, and concludes on Tuesday. The Quarterfinals are scheduled for Wednesday with the semifinals on Friday and Finals on Saturday.

For more information on the NAIA Tournament, visit the official NAIA website at http://naia.cstv.com/sports/m-soccer/2009championship.html. Live video and audio will be available for all tournament games by visiting http://www.watchnaia.com.

Written by Jeff Hoffman, Sports Information Director. For more information, contact Jenna Bartlo, Media Relations Coordinator. Jenna can be reached at (562) 777-4061 or through email at jenna.l.bartlo@biola.edu.

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