Nov 10, 2017
UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Oh. - The top-ranked Calvin men's soccer team claimed a 4-0 victory over Thomas More College (Ky.) in a first round game of the NCAA III Tournament Friday night on the campus of John Carroll University.
Calvin (20-0-1) will face host John Carroll (16-2-2) in the regional final Saturday night at 7 p.m. at John Carroll's Don Shula Stadium.
John Carroll defeated Ohio Wesleyan 3-1 in the opening first round game Friday night.
In its victory over Thomas More (14-5-2) Friday evening, Calvin dodged an early scoring threat by the Saints with the help of the woodwork. A defensive turnover allowed Thomas More's Sam Lewis to collect the ball and crank a shot from 30 yards out that appeared headed for the far post. The shot by Lewis skipped off the crossbar however and bounced away.
Moments later junior Bobby McCaw (Dubuque, Ia./Hempstead HS) scored his team-leading 21st goal by redirecting a cross in from junior Jacob Witte (Grand Rapids, Mich./Grand Rapids Christian HS) who had beaten a defender along the right wing. The goal was the fifth NCAA III Tournament goal of McCaw's career and proved to be the fourth game-winning goal of his NCAA III Tournament career.
Calvin quickly took a 2-0 lead in the second half as Witte headed in a cross from sophomore Hunter Olson (Canton, Mich./Canton HS) in the 48th minute. Less than five minutes later, Witte scored his second goal of the game including the fourth of his NCAA III Tournament career. McCaw assisted Witte on the goal with a pull-back pass with Witte connecting on a one-touch shot that beat Thomas More goalkeeper Jeff Paulin.
Senior Micah Beard (Otsego, Mich./Otsego HS) completed the scoring for the Knights by heading in a shot in the 79th minute after receiving a serve in the box from senior Matt Hinds (Frankenmuth, Mich./Frankenmuth HS). The goal was the first of the season for Beard and the second of his NCAA III Tournament career. The assist was the 13th of the season for Hinds.
Calvin finished the game with a 15-11 shots at goal advantage including 11-6 in the second half. Senior Nate Van Ryn (Grandville, Mich./Calvin Christian HS) had two key saves for the Knights in posting his 14th shutout victory of the season.
At 20-0-1, the Knights have now hit the 20-win plateau for the third consecutive year.
Calvin will be facing John Carroll for the second time in NCAA III Tournament play with the Blue Streaks winning the first meeting by a 1-0 score in first round game in 2007.