WATERTOWN, Wis. -- In a rematch of last year's NCCAA North Region championship, the Sabercats fell by the same scoreline, losing 0-1 to Providence University College.
The match was a battle from start to finish, and with the loss, the Sabercats see the 2018 season come to a disappointing end.
- Result: #4 Maranatha 0-1 #1 Providence
- Venue: Maranatha Baptist University
- Location: Watertown, Wis.
- Attendance: 229
- Records: MBU (6-13-0, 4-2-0 NCCAA), PUC (10-5-3, 2-1-0 NCCAA)
This was the third consecutive Maranatha-Providence match that has ended with a 1-0 scoreline, as the series has proven to be a defensive battle. This year's rendition was no exception, and it had all the components of a collegiate regional semifinal.
The game was fast and combative from start to finish, and at the end of the day, it was decided on a free kick. Braeden Owen stepped up in the 28th minute and bent a 20-yard direct kick into the bottom corner to give the Pilots a 1-0 lead.
The Sabercats pressed and tried to create chances, but a stingy back line kept the Sabercats from creating any real threats from the run of play. The best chance the Sabercats had was when Joel Shepard headed a ball towards the net from a set piece, but an alert Pilot defender whacked the ball away from the goal line before significant damage was done.
The best chance the Sabercats had in the second half was a volley from just inside the corner of the box, but Kyle Cummins' hard-hit shot was saved by Evan Bedard in the Providence net.
As the clock wound down, the Sabercats kept the ball in the Providence end, but the Pilots' defense was relentless, as they secured the shutout, the win, and the return trip to the regional championship.
- Nathan Campbell: 3 shots, 2 on target
- MBU: six shots on target
- Shot count: MBU 9-11 PUC
- Series: MBU leads the series, 4-2-0
- The Pilots are members of the Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference and the NCCAA DII
- Zach Friesen and Herby Magny lead the Pilots with seven goals each
- The Pilots rank sixth in the NCCAA DII in goals scored
- The Pilots won the NCCAA North Region title last year and finished in the top four at NCCAA Nationals
The Sabercats' season is now over. A full season recap and postseason awards will be forthcoming at mbusabercats.com