PORTLAND, Ore. – With both teams giving it everything they had, the Concordia Cavaliers repeated as Cascade Conference champions, defeating the Evergreen Geoducks, 2-1, in the 2012 CCC Men’s Soccer Championship final on Saturday night at Tuominen Yard in Portland, Ore.
After pressuring the Geoducks early, it was the Cavaliers who go on the board first as Matt Eronemo sent in a cross in the 33rd minute to the head of Michael Chamberlain, who guided it just under the bar and over the outstretched hands of junior keeper Mauricio Sanchez (Wenatchee, Wash./Wenatchee Valley CC) for the 1-0 lead.
The Cavaliers made it 2-0 shortly after the break as Septi Danciu was taken down in the box and coverted on a penalty kick in the 49th minute. Both teams went down a man in the 53rd minute as Sanchez and Concordia’s Danny Morato were shown red cards for fighting following a tough foul near midfield.
The physical match continued to keep the referee busy as Concordia’s Sam Carmichael was shown a red card in the 72nd minute following a hard foul on Evergreen keeper Collin Harlow (Kirkland, Wash./Shoreline CC) to give the Geoducks a one-man advantage for the remaining 18 minutes.
The Geoducks got on the board in the 88th minute as Ben Joselyn (North Bend, Wash./Mount Si HS) got on the end of a pair of passes from Kyle Wiese (Battle Ground, Wash./Prairie HS) and Kevin Flavin (Oak Harbor, Wash./Shoreline CC) to pull the green and white within one goal at 2-1 but there wasn’t enough time for Evergreen to pull ahead as Concordia earned the championship trophy.
Concordia held a 19-12 advantage on shots. Sanchez finished with four saves before leaving the game while Scott Gross made three saves to collect the win for the Cavaliers.
Evergreen concludes the season with a record of 13-5-0. Concordia moves to 15-3-2 on the year and will learn their NAIA tournament fate on Monday when the release of the sixteen national championship opening round pairings and the official bracket for the 54th annual NAIA Men’s Soccer National Championship is made.