MARSHALL, Mo. – The Vikings snapped an 11-game winning streak for the Drovers in a double overtime battle that literally went down to the final seconds in the 2013 NAIA Men’s Soccer National Championship Opening Round on Saturday night.
The No. 11 University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (15-5) fell to No. 20 Missouri Valley College (13-4-4) 2-1 in the second overtime with 13.2 seconds remaining on the clock. It was USAO’s fifth straight trip to the Opening Round.
With the win, MVC post season hopes are still alive as they prepare to travel to Montgomery, Ala., for their first trip to tournament’s final site. USAO’s season ended, and they will look for their chance again next season.
In a game that was expected to be an offensive battle, both teams ended up fighting hard on defense. In the first half, USAO was kept to just one shot, while the Vikings had just four shots. In all, MVC outshot USAO 23-8.
The Vikings took the 1-0 advantage with 30 minutes left in regulation but minutes later, USAO’s Niall Burley sailed one into the opposing goal off an assist by Nicolas Alberto.
With those two goals, the game went into overtime and the teams battled through nearly 20 minutes of extra minutes. As the clock wound down and the game appeared to be going into penalty kicks, MVC’s Alberto Linan Gomez scored to continue the Vikings’ season.
Junior goalkeeper Bryan Byars (15-5) had a career-high 13 saves in the game.
After starting the season 4-4, the Drovers won 11 in a row, including their sixth Sooner Athletic Conference Championship, to earn their spot in the national tournament.