AZUSA, Calif. -- And so the roller coaster ride continues. Less than 3 days after Azusa Pacific followed up a 0-0 draw at Cal Baptist in the GSAC opener with a 4-1 thumping of Vanguard at home, the Cougars fall, 4-0, to Biola in front of a raucous home crowd.
The loss drops the Cougars to 4-4-3 overall, 1-1-1 in the GSAC. Meanwhile, Biola, which was just 1-9 in GSAC play last year and has never won a GSAC title, assumes sole possession of the GSAC lead at 3-0 after Concordia (2-0-1) and Westmont (2-0-1) played to a 1-1 tie earlier in the day.
The snowball started in the 21st minute when Cougar freshman GK Morgan Cathey received a red card and was ejected for an aggressive play out of the box on a 1-on-1 situation. He will be forced to serve a one-game suspension Saturday when the Cougars travel to Santa Barbara to face the NAIA's No. 5-ranked Westmont.
Senior back-up GK Clark Cripps, who stepped on the field for the first time in nearly 5 years, was given a rude welcome from the Eagles on the first shot he saw. Biola's Shaun Cole scored the first of his 2 goals on the ensuing free kick to give the Eagles a 1-0 lead.
Just 3 minutes later, Biola made it 2-0 on a Chris Becher tally, assisted by Cole, who added his second goal just 7 seconds into the second half on assist by Dylan Martinez.
Cripps and the Cougar defense held things at bay for the rest of the second half until Matias Ichaso fired a shot into the lower right corner that beat Cripps in the 86th minute.
Surprisingly, the Cougars outshot Biola, 21-16, but none were able to beat Eagle GK Dan Thibault.