NCAA Division II Men’s National Semifinals
Thursday, November 29 – Highmark Stadium – Pittsburgh, PA
FINAL – Barry 0, Fort Hays State 0 – Barry Advances on 5-4 on PKs, WATCH
FINAL – West Chester 2, Cal Poly Pumona 1, OT WATCH
FOLLOW / PSN COVERAGE:
— WCU Athletics (@WCUAthletics) November 29, 2018
4:48 – GOAL – WEST CHESTER WINS IT! We will have a PSAC representative in the National Championship game at Highmark Stadium!
Jason Pixley with the game winner, Assist by Daniel Grindrod.
Looking forward to Ed Thompson’s photos!
4:40 – End of regulation — CP Pumona and West Chester stay tied 1-1 — and going to OT!
4:04 – GOAL – WEST CHESTER gets equalizer in 61st minute from Eric Greer. Greer’s first of the season.
3:58 – GOAL – CAL POLY PUMONA takes lead, 1-0. Header from Eduardo Faria.
3:25 – through the first half – -we have another scoreless game. Cal Poly Pumona and West Chester are 0-0.
2:33 – West Chester and CP Pumona have kicked off game two at Highmark Stadium
2:30 – Here’s a look at Barry’s clinching moment in PKs
Congrats to @BarryUSoccer for winning Game 1 of the @NCAADII Men's Soccer semifinals in a nail biting shootout against @fhsuathletics – what a great battle between these two stellar teams! #D2Festival #D2SOC #LovePGH pic.twitter.com/LkFU86T1KU
— SportsPITTSBURGH (@sports_pgh) November 29, 2018
1:50 – Barry wins the PK shootout — 5-4. Keepers made a few saves as it went seven rounds.
— Barry University Soccer (@BarryUSoccer) November 29, 2018
1:30 pm – Fort Hays and Barry played through a full 90 minutes — and two OT periods and are still scoreless
Shooting the @NCAADII Soccer semi finals today @highmarkstadium with @pghsoccernow @PghSoccerScribe @PghSportsNow. @fhsuathletics @FHSU_MSoccer @FortHaysState takes on @GoBarryBucs @BarryUSoccer #D2Festival . Check back for photos and updates. #PSN pic.twitter.com/ua3wmm5Xmy
— Ed Thompson (@ThompsonFoto12) November 29, 2018
NCAA DIVISION II FINAL FOUR PREVIEW
Kicking off a full day that includes four NCAA Division II National Semifinals will be the men games bright and early at Highmark Stadium on Thursday as part of the NCAA Fall Championships Festival in Pittsburgh. The first game between Fort Hays State and Barry kicks off at 11 a.m.
The men’s match-ups will feature four teams that have never won the NCAA Division II title — as West Chester is the only team to win a soccer title in 1961 when there weren’t separated by Divisions. With only one number one seed remaining, this year’s DII men’s title will really be up for grabs. We have mini-previews for each game below.
In addition to the soccer action, NCAA Division II championships in Cross Country, Field Hockey and Volleyball will be taking place in and around the Pittsburgh region. The DII Women’s Soccer Final Four will be played earlier in the day (we’ll have more on that in a separate post).
On Tuesday night, the schools were treated to an opening ceremony at the new Top Golf facility in Bridgeville
Welcomed over 900 student-athletes to the #D2Festival opening ceremonies at Topgolf. What a night:
— NCAA Division II (@NCAADII) November 28, 2018
Here’s a quick preview of the men’s semifinal games on Thursday:
Barry (FL) vs. Fort Hays State (TX), 11 a.m. WATCH
This is the first-ever meeting between these two teams. Barry is making its third appearance in the semis and the first since 2000 when the Bucs advanced to the championship match and lost a four-overtime marathon to Cal State Dominguez Hills. The Bucs will rely on Flavio Colasanti, the Sunshine State Conference Player and Offensive Player of the Year, who led the league with 12 goals and 29 points. He tied for the conference lead with four game-winning goals.
The Fort Hays State Tigers are riding a 14-match winning streak and have gone unbeaten in their last 15. The Tigers are the top scoring offense in the country, averaging 3.56 goals per game and tied with West Texas A&M with 64 goals on the season. More than a third of those goals came from junior forward Santiago Agudelo, who was recently named the Central Region Player of the Year and is the reigning Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Player of the Year. He led the nation in goals (26), total points (58), shots per match (5.82), shots on goal per match (3.29), game-winning goals (eight), goals per match (1.53) and points per match (3.41). Agudelo set team records for all seven of these categories, including shots (100) and shots on goal (57) for the season.
Odds and ends: Barry junior defender Stefano Cammarota was the recipient of the Elite 90 award during Tuesday’s opening ceremonies in Pittsburgh. Barry was also presented with the team GPA award during the festival.
West Chester (PA) vs. Cal Poly Pomona (CA), 2 p.m. WATCH
The West Chester Golden Rams are making their first appearance in the DII semis, while the Cal Poly Pomona Broncos made it this far last year and all the way to the final in 2015. West Chester knocked off two No. 1 seeds to get here, beating Notre Dame (Ohio) in their first game and bouncing defending champion Charleston (West Virginia) in the next. A 2-0 conquest of Adelphi in the quarters has the Rams in uncharted territory.
Steven Thompson has scored three goals in the tournament, two of which were game-winners. Goalkeeper Will Marshall returns to Pittsburgh — as he’s been exceptional since replacing injured keeper James Wood three games into the season. Since then, Marshall has played to a record of 14-1-4, which makes him the single-season wins leader in school history.
Meanwhile, Cal Poly Pomona has had to defeat a higher seed in every match to reach the semifinals, and they’ve done so without allowing a goal. After a slow start to the 2018 season, the Broncos have won 15 of their last 17 contests. They are led by a sterling senior class that is the first in program history to qualify for the NCAA tournament in all four seasons. Five in that class (Skyler Gibbons-Stovall, Eduard Lucas, Sergio Martinez, Nadeer Ghantous and Patricio Yrizar) have been with the program for at least the past four seasons.
Odds and ends: Of the four teams left standing, none has won a national championship, and only two have reached the final match since the tournament’s inception in 1972 – Barry in 2000 (lost to Cal State Dominguez Hills 2-1 in four overtimes) and Cal Poly Pomona in 2015 (lost to Pfeiffer 4-0).
NCAA Final Four Schedule (all games played at Highmark Stadium)
November 30, 2018
Fort Hays State vs Barry – 11 a..m.
West Chester vs Cal Poly Pumona – 2 p.m.
UC San Diego vs Bridgeport – 5 p.m.
Grand Valley St. vs Lee – 8 p.m.
December 1, 2018
Men’s final – Noon
Women’s final – 3 p.m.