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NCCAA Regionals Released

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November 5, 2012
Chris Baker

AZUSA, Calif.-- Three Azusa Pacific teams have earned a spot in the National Christian College Athletics Association postseason. The Cougars’ men’s and women’s soccer teams will both play host to West Region first round tilts, while the women’s volleyball team will square off with California Baptist in Riverside for the first round of the NCCAA tournament,. The winner of each regional final will advance to play in the NCCAA national championships in Kissimmee, Fla. from Nov. 28 through Dec. 1.

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WOMEN’S SOCCER: Azusa Pacific vs. Point Loma, Nov. 14, 6 p.m.

The Cougars, who finished second in their first season in the Pacific West Conference, closed the regular season with their 10th straight win on Saturday against Dixie State, improving to 13-5 (12-2 PacWest) to earn a first round home contest against (3) Point Loma as the region’s two-seed.

The matchup will be the third between the two teams this year after each school posted 2-0 wins on their home field. Azusa Pacific’s last loss came at the hands of the Sea Lions on Sept. 25, and since that time the Cougars have rattled off 10 consecutive victories in a span that includes seven shutouts, most notably a 2-0 defeat of Point Loma on Oct. 23.

The winner of the match will move on to play the two-time PacWest champs (1) California Baptist, which earned a first round bye, in the West Region final on Nov. 17 at 2 p.m. The Lancers, who won the NCCAA national championship in 2011, went 1-1 against Point Loma this season, losing 3-0 in San Diego, and escaping with a 3-2 overtime win in Riverside. California Baptist shutout the Cougars in Azusa on Sept. 25 in the teams’ only meeting this season.

MEN’S SOCCER: Azusa Pacific vs. California Baptist, Nov.15, 7 p.m.

Azusa Pacific, which earned the West’s two-seed, posted one of their biggest wins of the seasons on Sept. 26 when they beat CBU, the reigning PacWest champs, at home. The Cougars, who went 9-0 in Azusa this season, finished in fifth place in the PacWest standings after a 4-1 victory over Dixie State on Saturday to close the regular season.

Third-seeded CBU was within a called-off goal of winning its second consecutive conference championship on Saturday when the Lancers scored what would-have been the game winner against Grand Canyon (Ariz.) before the officials waved it off after a foul call. The Antelopes went on to win the match and claim the league title.

Whichever team wins will play the winner of the Fresno Pacific-Trinity Lutheran match. The Sunbirds are the region’s top-seed and would host the final at 7 p.m., while Trinity Lutheran is the fourth seed, and would play the final at either CBU or Azusa Pacific on Nov. 17.

VOLLEYBALL: Azusa Pacific at California Baptist, Nov. 15, 7 p.m.

Despite still having three matches left on the docket, the Cougar volleyball team’s postseason fate has already been decided. Azusa Pacific, the region’s third-seed will travel to Riverside for a first round contest at second-seeded CBU on Nov. 15, with the winner advancing to face top-seeded Fresno Pacific on Nov. 17 in Fresno.

Azusa Pacific went 0-2 against the Lancers this season, falling in four sets in the team’s home opener on Sept. 11, before getting swept at CBU on Saturday. California Baptist is currently in third place at 10-4 in the PacWest, while the Cougars are in sixth (9-6) with two league matches remaining.

Azusa Pacific will play Dominican at home on Wednesday before hosting senior night on Friday, Nov. 9 against Holy Names. The Cougars will close the regular season at Biola on Tuesday, Nov. 13.