JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Carson-Newman men's soccer team ended its season in the no. 2 spot of the NSCAA/Continental Tire Division II national ranking with a record of 16-6-1. This is the highest ranking in program history.
"We're excited about finishing number two in the country," Carson-Newman head soccer coach Richard Moodie said. "That's the highest we've ever finished. I think we've had a great year."
After losing in the first round of the SAC Tournament to Mars Hill, C-N was given a second chance with a fourth place regional ranking, and made the most of it.
"Obviously this is a good foundation for where we need to start next year," Moodie said. "starting the season nationally ranked. It's easier to stay in the rankings when you're already starting in them."
In the first match of the national tournament, the Eagles defeated conference foe Anderson 3-2. Nick Skoda (Knoxville, Tenn.), Ross Frame (Welshpool, Powys, United Kingdom) and Nico Noll (Esens, Niedersachsen, Germany) each put up a goal. Keeper Nick Martin (Russellville, Tenn.) was awarded the win.
The Lads eliminated Lander in a penalty kick shootout to claim the regional title. Senior captain and keeper Rumwald Le Guevel (Vannes, France) saved two of the Bearcats' penalties to advance his team to the Elite Eight for the first time since 2005.
Rollins was eliminated by the Eagles on its home turf with a 2-1 final advancing C-N to the Final Four and making program history. Frame scored in the tenth minute to take the lead; Skoda put in what would be the winning goal 60 minutes later.
The Eagles toppled NCAA's British Columbian team Simon Fraser 3-2 to continue their journey to the title match. C-N went into halftime down by one. Frame and Welo each put up a point in the second half. Tied at two with a just over a minute remaining, Joao Dowsley (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) scored the winning goal.
Carson-Newman fell in the final match 2-1 to no. 2 Southern New Hampshire. The match was scoreless until the 74th minute when the Penmen took the lead. Twelve minutes later, SNHU was awarded a questionable penalty kick on which Pierre Omanga capitalized.
With two minutes remaining, a brawl broke out causing both teams to receive red cards. Play resumed with C-N down two players and SNHU down one. In the last six seconds, Frame put up the Eagles' lone goal making it a 2-1 final.
Frame finished the season with 20 goals, three off the school record, landing him the no. 5 spot in the nation for this season and making him just the fourth player in C-N history with 20 goals or more in a single season. Frame's 11 assists on the season tie him for seventh in the nation.
"Finishing second was another record we set this year," Moodie aid. "The highest we ever finished was sixth in the nation. The boys are very deserving of this."
The Eagles are now the highest ranking SAC team since the 2007 Lincoln Memorial men's soccer team that also finished second in the nation.
"We're grateful for all the support we've had over the year," Moodie said. "We are looking forward to the spring season and getting ready for next fall."