Men’s soccer drops regular season finale to Master’s
Freshman middle fielder John Hanscom hustles to steal the ball from Master's College. | John Buchanan/THE CHIMES
What began as a dream start for the Eagles in their final game of the regular season suddenly declined into a nightmare finish as men’s soccer fell to The Master’s College 2-1. The Saturday evening game at Al Barbour field marks the first loss at home for the Eagles this season.
Biola seemed to dominate many aspects of the match. Not only did the Eagles outshoot the Mustangs 17-14, they also earned three more corners as well as saving eight more shots. Junior midfielder Tony Montalvo had a chance to give Biola an early lead in the first half with a PK attempt, but missed just over the crossbar. Luckily for Montalvo, he would get a chance at redemption. In the 70th minute, sophomore midfielder Stephen Day blasted a ball right at Master’s keeper Andrew Bussell who, unable to handle the shot, parried the ball behind him. The streaking Montalvo got a head on the ball and easily placed it in the back of an open net.
Things then began to go downhill. Nine minutes after the Eagles’ score, Mustang midfielder Joey Mikulas found a ball in front of Biola’s net and tapped in the equalizer. Two minutes later, sophomore defender Joao Toscan was called for a foul on a breakaway against Master’s leading scorer Taylor Shahi. Toscan was shown a red card, a hefty penalty which not only meant an ejection for the solid defender but an exclusion from Biola’s next match as well. A calm and collected Shahi stepped up and hit a laser to the far right net, just beyond the reach of freshman keeper Joshua Crichton. A few last-minute pushes by Biola were all for naught as Master’s held strong to their lead for the victory.
The good news: the Eagles will have a chance to bounce back and gain a bit of revenge very soon. Biola faces Master’s in the first round of the Golden State Athletic Conference Tournament this Wednesday at home. A win would allow the Eagles to move on to the semi-finals to take on San Diego Christian College. A loss, and the men likely see their 2012 season come to an end.