Story by Andrew Pulverenti, MVC Sports Information director
The No. 12 Missouri Valley College men’s soccer team hosted No. 17 Hannibal-LaGrange University in the opening round of the NAIA Men’s Soccer National Championship Tournament Saturday night at Gregg-Mitchell Field. Hannibal-LaGrange was able to defeat the Vikings by a 1-0 score.
The two teams played even through most of the first half, each having chances on
goal, before the Trojans got their breakthrough. Midway through the first half, Hannibal-LaGrange’s Felipe Silva scored what would be the only goal of the match off a deflection save by Missouri Valley Junior Keeper Josh Wells (Kent, England) 22-minutes into the match.
The Vikings came out in the second half, and put the pressure on the Trojans, getting off 11 total shots, with seven of the shots on goal, but all were stopped by Hannibal-LaGrange’s Keeper Logan Miller. The Vikings had one last chance as time was winding down in the match off a throw-in. There was a scramble in the box, but a shot by Freshman Forward Kaique Negri (Piracicaba, Brazil) went just over the crossbar. Hannibal-LaGrange was able to keep the Vikings from getting another chance with seconds remaining, giving the Trojans the victory.
The Vikings end their season with a 12-7-2 record, while Hannibal-LaGrange improves to 15-4-0 on the season and advances to the second round of the tournament which takes place Nov. 26 in Montgomery, Ala. This was the third-straight appearance in the postseason tournament for the MVC men’s program, and they are now 0-3 in tournament play. Head coach for the varsity team is Vladimir Simic.
Also wrapping up its season recently was the men’s soccer junior varsity program.
Head JV Coach Robert Peters guided the men’s JV team to a 9-0-1 record, outscoring opponents by a 41 to 4 margin.