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National Championship Opening Round Recap

November 19, 2011
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Fifteen teams advance to the 2011 NAIA Men’s Soccer National Championship Final Site after Opening Round wins today. Those programs join No. 4 Mobile (Ala.) for the single-elimination tournament from Nov. 28 – Dec. 3 in Orange Beach, Ala. Defending national champion and No. 1 seed Hastings (Neb.) eliminated first-timer Mount Mercy (Iowa) by a 2-0 score.

The top eight seeds will continue their seasons in Orange Beach (Mobile had a bye) thanks to offensive fireworks and stingy defenses. The top three seeds, Hastings, No. 2 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) and No. 3 Baker (Kan.), all recorded shutouts and scored 11 combined goals. The overall scoring margin of the top eight seeds was 28-4. Lindsey Wilson boasted the day’s largest scoring output and margin of victory in the 7-0 triumph over Roberts Wesleyan (N.Y.).

Science & Arts (Okla.), who made it to 2010 Quarterfinals in its second National Championship, upended No. 9 Missouri Valley, 2-0, for the biggest upset on Saturday. Huston-Tillotson (Texas) was one of seven teams appearing in its first-ever National Championship. The Rams took down No. 14 Kansas Wesleyan, 4-3 in overtime, and became the only newcomer to be on the winning side. Other seeded teams to suffer losses were No. 11 Concordia (Ore.) and No. 16 Taylor (Ind.).

The host schools went 10-4-1 today. Since the Opening Round format began in 2008, the hosts have now combined for a record of 39-16-5 all-time. Last year, the hosts went just 8-7.

Overall, there were six shutouts on the day and four matches that went into extra periods. No. 15 Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.) advanced 4-2 on penalty kicks after a 1-1 double-overtime draw against Biola (Calif.). That match marked the only tie.

At 19-0-0, Lindsey Wilson owns the NAIA’s longest active winning streak as the Blue Raiders march on in their 18th-straight event. With today’s victory, Lindsey Wilson tied former NAIA member Quincy (Ill.) for the most all-time National Championship wins (41). Hastings will play in Orange Beach with the most wins at 21-1-0. No. 8 Azusa Pacific (Calif.) enters next weekend with the fewest wins with a 13-3-3 mark. Conversely, Saint Xavier (Ill.), who won its first-ever National Championship contest, has dropped the most games of any qualifier at 14-8-0.

Seven National Championship Final Site qualifiers have won at least one National Championship with Lindsey Wilson leading the way with eight. The other six programs have earned one previous trophy. Hastings is looking to become the sixth all-time program in the 53-year history of men’s soccer to repeat as national champions.

The Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) sends the most teams to Orange Beach. Representing the SSAC is No. 12 Belhaven (Miss.), Mobile, No. 10 Southern Poly (Ga.) and No. 13 William Carey (Miss.).

Box Score - Bethel (Tenn.) vs. Montreat (N.C.)
Box Score - Kansas Wesleyan vs. Huston-Tillotson (Texas)
Box Score - Hastings (Neb.) vs. Mount Mercy (Iowa)
Box Score - Southern Poly (Ga.) vs. Menlo (Calif.)
Box Score - Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.) vs. Biola (Calif.)
Box Score - Azusa Pacific (Calif.) vs. Cal State San Marcos
Box Score - Grand View (Iowa) vs. MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)
Box Score - Belhaven (Miss.) vs. Texas at Brownsville
Box Score - Taylor (Ind.) vs. Saint Xavier (Ill.)
Box Score - Concordia (Ore.) vs. Great Falls (Mont.)
Box Score - Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) vs. Roberts Wesleyan (N.Y.)
Box Score - Missouri Valley vs. Science & Arst (Okla.)
Box Score - Rio Grande (Ohio) vs. Madonna (Mich.)
Box Score - William Carey (Miss.) vs. Embry-Riddle (Fla.)