No. 2 Rio Grande survives Point Park in NAIA National Championship Opening Round
Nov. 23, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. ET
Point Park's Max Flick (12) marks Rio Grande's Pau Rodriguez Delgado in the NAIA national tourney. Photo by URG.
RIO GRANDE, Ohio -- No. 2-ranked Rio Grande survived Point Park, 2-1, in the NAIA Men's Soccer National Championship Opening Round on Saturday in a game played at Rio Grande's Evan E. Davis Field in Rio Grande, Ohio.
Rio Grande (16-2-2), which has the top scoring offense in the NAIA, got out to a 2-0 lead at halftime. But Point Park (12-7-1), which ranks seventh in the country in scoring, had its offense heard from the last 45.
Sophomore Max Flick, from Beaver Falls, Pa., scored an unassisted goal in the 72nd minute to make things interesting at 2-1. Things got even tighter when Flick blasted a shot from the 8-yard line with 12 seconds left, but Rio Grande's goalkeeper Jon Dodson came up with the save as the Red Storm escaped with the win.
Point Park had only two shots on the day as it opted to play a defensive game, but the Pioneers made those two shots count and nearly had things going to overtime. Rio Grande led in shots, 13-2, and got first-half goals by Luiz Filho in the 12th minute and Pau Rodriguez Delgado in the 17th minute.
Filho scored his NAIA-leading 28th goal of the year when he put in a rebound of his own miss for the 1-0 lead. Rodriguez Delgado scored from 20 yards out on a nice bender.
Rio Grande picked up a red card in the 58th minute, and Point Park had the man advantage for the rest of the way. But it will be Rio Grande moving on to the round of 16 at the NAIA National Championship final site Dec. 2-7 in Montgomery, Ala.
The national tournament, a 32-team event, started Saturday at 16 campus sites around the country for the NAIA National Championship Opening Round. It is the second year in a row that Point Park lost in this stage. They lost at then-No. 1 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.), 7-2, last season.
At 12-7-1 overall, Point Park tied a program record for wins in a season. The 12 wins match the 1998 (12-5) and 2011 (12-5-1) teams for most victories. The Pioneers were in the NAIA national tournament as back-to-back champs of the KIAC/GCAC Tournament and KIAC Regular Season champions.