California Baptist repeats as NCCAA I Women's Soccer National Champions
Courtesy CBU Sports Information
KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Back on Oct. 2, the California Baptist University women's soccer team received a big wake-up call with a 3-0 loss at Point Loma.
As it turns out, the Lancers never went back to sleep.
Two months and 14 games later, CBU put on a clinic at the most opportune time, scoring two goals in the first four minutes and dominating for a full 90 minutes in a 3-0 win over Southern Nazarene on Saturday, Dec. 1, to claim the 2012 National Christian College Athletic Association Division I Women's Soccer National Championship.
It is the Lancers second straight national title and the institution's seventh NCCAA Championship over the last two years.
“That Point Loma loss was a humbling moment, but it helped us re-focus,” CBU Head Coach Kristen St. Clair said. “The girls rolled up their sleeves, went back to work and learned lessons. They finished the season the way they wanted to.”
The Lancers conclude their season with a stellar 18-2-1 record, the identical mark from a season ago when they set a school record for wins in claiming their first NCCAA title. The 14-game winning streak to finish the season also is a school record, while the Lancers became the first team to repeat as national champions since Indiana Wesleyan boasted back-to-back wins 1999 and 2000.
Southern Nazarene ended its season at 13-8-1.
The tournament’s Most Outstanding Offensive Player was CBU's Kelly Jenks who scored just 2:31 into the game - her third goal of the tournament - while just 56 seconds later Daelyn Paul made it 2-0 to give the Lancers all the scoring they needed in the opening 3:27.
“Scoring twice set the tone,” St. Clair said. “Playing three games in four days is not easy, but the players were determined. Scoring early makes it easier, so scoring twice was big. They did a great job finishing the shutout.”
Jenks added to her tournament-leading goal total with a score in the 68th minute - a beautiful one-time volley - for her fourth of the tournament and 16th of the year.
She started the scoring before either team could get settled when she carried the ball down the field and lofted a shot over SNU keeper Yoli Zamarripa in the third minute.
Then in the fourth minute, Paul took a pass at the top of the box from Lindsay Vesling and slid it past Zamariipa to double the margin.
While Jenks was providing the offensive punch, the Lancer defense and midfield were doing yeoman’s work keeping the ball away from the Crimson Storm. So much so, that Southern Nazarene failed to register a single shot until just 10 minutes remained in the game.
The Lancers finished the contest with 18 total shots, including 10 on goal.
Paul was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player, while Chantel Cappuccilli was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player. Vesling also was named to the All-Tournament team.
“This is a humbling experience and we are blessed,” St. Clair said. “I’m so proud of the players. It’s really hard to describe. It’s hard to win one, but so much harder to repeat. They played through adversity and came together, and their execution, performance and chemistry were unparalleled. They have conducted themselves so well and I’m proud to be their coach.”