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Hastings Wins First-Ever National Championship With 5-3 Victory

December 04, 2010
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Dec. 4, 2010

 

Contact: Chad Waller, NAIA Director of Sports Information & Media Services, cwaller@naia.org

 

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ORANGE BEACH, Ala. - (Final Bracket) No. 3-seed Hastings (Neb.) continued its offensive fireworks, this time plowing past No. 4 Notre Dame (Ohio), 5-3 to win its first-ever NAIA Men's Soccer National Championship. In front of 350 fans from the Orange Beach Sportsplex, the Broncos received goals from four different players to end the season with a school-record 25-0 mark. Hastings set a Tournament record for most goals scored with 21 in five matches, including 15 in the last three games.

 

“I am just so proud of my team,” said head coach Chris Kranjc, who wrapped up his 12th season. “Everything we did all season, we did it tonight. We defended with heart, we attacked with passion and precision and we put away chances when we had the shots.

 

“We did this against a great Notre Dame team. I have the utmost respect for what they have done and for coach McBride. They made it difficult on us tonight.”

 

It wasn’t all Hastings to start the contest.

 

Notre Dame junior Luke Holmes energized the Blue and White fans 90 seconds into the contest. His shot from the right side was his 23rd of the season and fourth goal of the National Championship in five matches. He would later add another in the 69th minute to give him 70 for his career. For his efforts, he was named the Most Valuable Player of the Tournament.

 

Down 1-0, the Hastings offense got going. Junior Nate Polak tied the score with a marker in the 19th minute. His score started a string of three-consecutive Bronco goals in the first half. Junior Derek Prinz found the back of the net in the 29th minute to hand Hastings a 2-1 edge. Polak then added his second goal of the game in the 33rd minute, which put his goal total at 19 on the year.

 

With his team trailing 3-1, Notre Dame sophomore Tom Mellor bent a direct kick from 25 yards out in the top-right corner in the 43rd minute. The score stood 3-2 in favor of Hastings until the second half.

 

Just minutes after intermission, Hastings sophomore Jordan Green took a corner kick from junior Matt Wadleigh and headed the ball into the top corner to give Hastings some breathing room, 4-2. Green was named the Offensive Player of the Tournament as he notched six goals in five Tournament games.

 

For the third time, Notre Dame came back from a two-goal deficit as Holmes took a pass from senior Jacob Child in the 69th minute. That marker put the score at 4-3 in favor of Hastings.

 

Senior AJ Dingledine became the fourth Hastings player to score with his blast in the 83rd minute. His goal capped an offensive display that hasn’t been seen since 1965. The eight combined goals are the most in a Championship final since Trenton State (N.J.) defeated Earlham (Ind.), 6-2.

 

Notre Dame, who made it to its first-ever Semifinal round, ends the year at 23-1.

 

BY THE NUMBERS:

** The two teams were playing in their first-ever National Championship final.

 

** With a two-goal margin of victory, Hastings is the first team to win by more than one goal in the Championship final since 2007 when Azusa Pacific (Calif.) took down Concordia (Calif.), 2-0.

 

** The five goals scored by Hastings is the second-most tally in the National Championship final. The last time a team scored five was Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) in the 1996 event. Two teams posted six goals in a Championship final, Quincy (Ill.) did it twice in 1974 and 1966 and Trenton State (N.J.) did it in 1965.

 

** Hastings broke the Tournament record for most goals scored with 21. The Broncos surpassed the mark of 20 set by Quincy (Ill.) back in 1974.

 

** The last No. 3 versus No. 4 Championship final match-up was in 2004 when No. 3 Lindenwood (Mo.) defeated No. 4 Auburn Montgomery (Ala.), 1-0.

 

** Hastings improved to 11-4-3 in its seventh National Championship appearance.

 

** The Broncos out-scored their opponents 21-4 in their five games in the Tournament.

 

** Both Hastings and Notre Dame entered the contest ranked in the top-five nationally in goals scored per game with over 4.0.

 

** Hastings joined its women’s team in the Soccer National Championship final today. The women Broncos were defeated by Lee (Tenn.), 3-0 in Decatur, Ala., earlier. The last time that both a men’s and women’s soccer programs played in the final was Azusa Pacific (Calif.) in 2007. Overall there have been four previous occurrences (1992, 1993, 2006 and 2007), but no school has won a title in both sports in the same season.

 

** Notre Dame was appearing in its first National Championship match. It joined the wrestling program as the only teams to advance this far in school-history. The wrestling team won the 2010 National Championship.

 

** Notre Dame fell to 8-3-1 in its fourth National Championship trip.

    

2010 NAIA Men's Soccer All-Tournament Team:
Goalkeepers:

Alex Klein, Notre Dame (Ohio), Jr.
Cody  Poteat, Hastings (Neb.), Jr.

Forwards:
Deshorn Brown, Mobile (Ala.), Fr.
Jordan Green, Hastings (Neb.), So.

Luke Holmes, Notre Dame (Ohio), Jr.
Nate Polak, Hastings (Neb.), Jr.

Midfielders:
Justin Beck, William Jewell (Mo.), Sr.

Ruben Diaz, Mobile (Ala.), Sr.

Tom Mellor, Notre Dame (Ohio), So.

Yannic Thiel, Hastings (Neb.), Sr.


Defenders:
Chris Dillon, Mobile (Ala.), So.

Daniel Knight, Notre Dame (Ohio), Jr.

Joseph Omondi, Bethel (Tenn.), Jr.

Derek Prinz, Hastings (Neb.), Jr.

Most Valuable Player of the Tournament:
Luke Holmes, Notre Dame (Ohio), Jr.

 

Offensive Player of the Tournament:
Jordan Green, Hastings (Neb.), So.


Defensive Player of the Tournament:

Derek Prinz, Hastings (Neb.), Jr. 

 

Champions of Character Brine-NAIA Scholarship Recipient:

Cody Poteat, Hastings (Neb.), Jr. 

 

Nels Dahlquist Memorial Team Sportsmanship Award:

Hastings College (Neb.)