Bears Soccer Finishes 4th at MCCC Tournament

The Barclay College soccer team trekked east to Belton, Mo. for the start of the Midwest Christian College Conference tournament this past weekend. The Bears earned the #4 seed in the tournament and entered with big expectations after playing #3 Manhattan Christian (Manhattan, Kans.) to a tie and taking #1 seed Ozark Christian (Joplin, Mo.) to overtime earlier this season.

First up for the Bears was #5 seed Central Christian College of the Bible (Moberly, Mo.) in an early morning start to kick of the tournament. It was an extremely tight contest thanks to the CCCB keeper. He stopped several shot attempts including a penalty kick from the Bears. In the second half, however, sophomore David Kearns (Eudora, Kans.) received a well-placed pass from senior Brandon Palmer (Newton, Kans.) and rocketed a shot in the lower 90 to give the Bears the lead and the 1-0 victory.

In the semi-finals Barclay faced top-seeded Ozark Christian, who was also ranked #6 in the most recent NCCAA Division II poles, for a chance to play in the championship game. The Ambassadors, unfortunately, stormed out of the gate and built a 2-0 halftime lead. Barclay, with their backs against the wall, showed no quit. They scored in the second half off of a senior Kingsley Assibey (Ghana, Africa) pass to sophomore Justin Calicchia (Montreal, Canada), who beat two defenders before scoring and narrowing the deficit to 2-1. In the midst of the Bears comeback, they received two soft red cards (double yellows) and were forced to play two men down over the final 20 minutes of the second half. This proved too much to overcome as Ozark held on for the 2-1 win.

The next day Barclay faced #2 seed Faith Baptist Bible College (Ankeny, Iowa), who was also ranked nationally in the top ten at #9. Once again Barclay ceded multiple first half goals that they could not recover from. Even though the Bears scored late in the second half off a cross by freshman Caleb Overcast (Spring Creek, Nev.) to Palmer who walked it in for a goal, Faith would win 3-1.

Next up for the Bear is the NCCAA Division II Southwest Region Tournament in Dallas, Texas on Friday, October 30. The Bears will need to beat Hillsdale Free Will Baptist (Moore, Okla.) and then top-seeded Dallas Christian on Saturday to qualify for the national tournament.