Calvin Halts Transy NCAA Soccer Run in Second Shootout

Box Score

PITTSBURGH, PA - Transylvania's march through the NCAA Division III Championships came to an end Saturday when Calvin ousted the Pioneers in a shootout on penalty kicks to advance to the national men's soccer semifinals.

The Pioneers (16-3-3) battled Calvin to a 1-1 tie through regulation and two over time periods before the Knights (17-4-3) took a 4-3 advantage in penalty kicks in a shootout. The Knights are in the national quarterfinals for the first time since 1980.

The men's and women's national semifinals and finals will be held Dec. 4-5 in San Antonio, Tex.

Transy's Brian Williams opened the shootout by making his attempt and was matched by Calvin. Jordan Parks missed his attempt, but Calvin also misfired. Tony Spero booted his try home and was matched by the Knights. But Zach Lange missed his attempt and when Calvin made its attempt, the Pioneers were on the verge of elimination.

Jason Fairless connected to give Transy a chance and keeper Trey Kramer kept the Pioneers in the match by saving Calvin's final attempt in the first shootout, leaving the penalty kicks a 3-3.

Kevin Jones missed for the Pioneers and when Calvin connected on its first attempt of the second shootout, the match came to an end.

Calvin's Alex McKenzie gave the Knights the early lead when he headed in a long pass from the left side just 7:42 into the contest. It was his ninth goal of the season.

The score remained 1-0 at intermission as the Knights out-shot Transy 7-5, including a 4-3 margin in attempts on goal. Transy had a 3-1 edge in corners in the opening half.

Pierre Manga put the Pioneers on the board, tying the contest at 1-1 in the 73rd minute when he connected from 18 yards out. It was his seventh goal of the year. That would be the last score in regulation.

Calvin had three shots in the first overtime, but all were turned back by Kramer. Fairless got the Pioneers first shot in the second extra period, but it was saved three and a half minutes into the second overtime.

The Pioneers were in the NCAA Championship field for the fifth time in six years and in the Sweet 16 for the second time in three seasons.  It was Transy's first appearance in the Elite Eight.

Calvin had a 26-9 edge in shots overall and 15-6 in tries on goal. Kramer, in his final game in goal, had 14 saves. Calvin wound up with a 7-3 edge in corner attempts.

"We made a great run," said Transy coach Brandon Bowman. "I think a lot of people kind of took us lightly and we proved that we play some pretty good soccer, too. I am so proud of our team and what our seniors accomplished in getting to the Elite Eight. We know we could have just as easily advanced to the Final Four if we could have gotten one more shot to go in."

Messiah defeated Stevens Institute of Technology on penalty kicks to win last year's men's soccer national championship game.