MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. ( Nov. 19, 2022) – The third meeting of the 2022 season between Florida National University’s men’s soccer team and the St. Thomas University Bobcats was as high-stakes a contest as any Conquistador fanatic could hope for. Despite the first two meetings between these teams ending in a 0-0 score after regulation, STU got the better of the visiting Conquistadors 2-0, knocking FNU out of championship contention in the second round of the NAIA Men’s Soccer Championship.
The journey for these two teams en route to the final was a show of complete domination. On November 17, FNU defeated No. 17 Life University 4-2, while STU routed Embry-Riddle 4-0 to set up an all-south Florida final in the Miami Gardens Bracket scheduled for November 19 at noon.
As play went underway at Autonation Field, the Bobcats pounced fiercely on the offensive end and landed two goals in the first half. Their goals came courtesy of Felipe Madero and Hernando Suarez. The Conquistadors had two shots on goal for the period from Francisco Crimi and Constantino Higa, respectively, that did not materialize into a needed goal. The Bobcats had five shots in the period and racked up all of the four corners awarded in the half.
With a fresh set of 45 minutes on the clock, FNU could not seem to generate the offensive push to will itself back into the match. About fifteen minutes into the second half, two red cards were awarded to Florida National leaving them with nine men on the field. Losing defenders Ricardo Delwing and Mateo Cigaina was too much for the depleted Conquistadors to overcome.
FNU ended the match with six shots and one corner. Victor Ruiz collected three saves for the Conquistadors.