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NAIA MEN: Tiny Bethel stuns top seeds
December 8th, 2008 8AM
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Fielding a team entirely comprised of foreign players, unseeded Bethel College of Tennessee completed its stunning march to the NAIA men's title with a 4-0 win over No. 1 seed Oklahoma City in the semifinals and a 2-1 overtime win over No. 2 seed Rio Grande in the final at the 50th annual National Championships hosted by Fresno Pacific University.

Mexican Eric Rosas scored on a 20-yard shot only 15 seconds into the first overtime to give the Wildcats their first national title in any sport.
 
"I'm very delighted and happy," said Bethel head coach Melvin Belong, who is in his second season. "Our guys worked hard all season and it paid off. All season long we focused on playing with character and not giving up ... I believe our character carried us tonight."

All 12 players Bethel used in the final were foreigners. Three hail from Mexico, two from South Africa and Kenya, and one each from Canada, Ireland, England, Sweden and Jamaica.

Rio Grande started nine Englishmen, one Brazilian and American goalie Nate Walzer.

GAME SUMMARIES:
Semifinals
Dec. 5 in Fresno, Calif.

Rio Grande 1 Mount Vernon Nazarene 0. Goal: Brooks 11.
Rio Grande -- Walzer, Skarrat, Morris, Young, Nicholson, Massie, Brooks, Stansfield, Fairhurst, Lopes, Ross. Subs: O'Hara, Marcinek, Croft, Anderson, Williams, McCaffery, Mahoney.
Mount Vernon Nazarene -- Stout, Patterson, Swanson, Yoder, Warwick, Snouffer, Reber, Mast, Spangler, Worrall, Tugman. Subs: Cane, Maxam, Armstrong, Forster.
Att.: 246.

Dec. 5 in Fresno, Calif.
Bethel (Tenn.) 4 Oklahoma City 0.
Goals: Vila Boa (Orozco) 26, Rosas (Obilo) 36, Rosas (Orozco) 43, Ekvall 58.
Bethel --
Collu-Marchese, Apodica, Crosbie, Omondi, Short, Vila Boa, Smith, Obilo, K.Brown, Ekvall, Orozco. Subs: Burger, Rosas, R.Brown, Petiote.
Oklahoma City -- Fitzpatrick, Taylor, Spendlove, Hull, Nittler, Garvey, Hilton, Jackson, Dill, Gang, Sheffield. Subs: Nolan, Franks, Ellis, Ido, Vaughn, Wenyon.
Referee: Pawel Wydra.
Att.: 215.

Final
Dec. 7 in Fresno, Calif.

Bethel (Tenn.) 2 Rio Grande 1. Goals: Vila Boa (Omondi) 71, Rosas (Orozco) 73.
Bethel -- Collu-Marchese, Apodica, Crosbie, Omondi, Short, Vila Boa, Smith, Obilo, K.Brown, Ekvall, Orozco. Sub: Rosas.
Rio Grande -- Walzer, Skarrat, Morris, Young, Nicholson, Massie, Brooks, Stansfield, Fairhurst, Lopes, Ross. Subs: O'Hara, Marcinek, Anderson, Williams, Mahoney.
Referee: Pawel Wydra.
Att.: 354.

AWARDS:
All-Tournament Team
Goalkeepers
Alex Stout, Mount Vernon Nazarene (Ohio), Jr.
Nate Walzer, Rio Grande (Ohio), Sr.

Forwards
Mario Vila Boa, Bethel (Tenn.), Fr.
Adam Worrall, Mount Vernon Nazarene (Ohio), Sr.
Ederson Lopes, Rio Grande (Tenn.), So.

Midfielders
Paul Nicholson, Rio Grande (Ohio), Sr.
Felix Obilo, Bethel (Tenn.), So.
Alex Gang, Oklahoma City, So.
Jason Massie, Rio Grande (Ohio), Jr.
Armondo Orozco, Bethel (Tenn.), So.

Defenders
Zach Patterson, Mount Vernon Nazarene (Ohio), Sr.
Keith Brown, Bethel (Tenn.), Sr.
Mark Ross, Rio Grande (Ohio), Fr.
Joseph Omondi, Bethel (Tenn.), Fr.

MVP -- Mario Vila Boa, Bethel (Tenn.), Fr.
Best Offensive Player -- Mario Vila Boa, Bethel (Tenn.), Fr.
Best Defensive Player -- Paul Nicholson, Rio Grande (Ohio), Sr.



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