Westminster College tallied two second-half goals to come from behind and take down top-seeded Spalding University 3-2 in the 2016 SLIAC Men's Soccer Championship game. The win is Westminster's fourth consecutive SLIAC Tournament title, the most consecutive titles in conference history. The win also equals the conference record for most tournament titles by one program with four, also achieved by Fontbonne University.
Spalding, who went undefeated in SLIAC play this year, was looking to become just the sixth program in conference history to walk off the field a winner against every conference opponent in every regular season and postseason game. Playing in front of their home crowd the Golden Eagles struck quickly with freshman Osman Hussein striking just 5:29 into the action. Serg Olvera-Vancini assisted on the goal.
The Blue Jays experience helped them remain calm despite the deficit. Kyle Collins evened the score up for the Blue Jays less than ten-minutes later, after receiving a pass from David Immanuel. The Golden Eagles pressured the Blue Jays at the end of the first-half, possessing the ball for the majority of the final five-minutes. Jacob Teasley nearly gave Spalding a half-time lead but sent a ball just over the cross-bar on a shot from inside the box.
The two teams went into half tied at 1-1 with Westminster out shooting Spalding 7-6 and holding a 5-0 edge in corner kicks.
Westminster came out with energy in the second-half, getting off four shots in the first 15-minutes of play. However it was the Golden Eagles who struck first in the second-half when Kornell Hilliard was set up by Jacob Teasley for a goal at the 64-minute mark.
The lead did not last long however as the Blue Jays answered back with a goal by Drew Cook just four-minutes later to tie the score at 2-2. Westminster's Daniel Barone completed the come back for the Blue Jays when he scored in the 84th minute to put his team up 3-2. Spalding was held without a shot for the game's final 14-minutes and were limited to just two shots in the second-half. Westminster out shot Spalding 17-8 in the game and finished with an 8-1 edge in corner kicks.
Ben Chesher made one save in picking up the win in net for Westminster while Ryan Glynn made six saves in the loss for Spalding. Westminster improves to 14-3-1 overall and earns the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Men's Soccer National Tournament. The tournament pairings will be announced on Monday, November 7th at 12:30 p.m. and can be seen live HERE