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Mighty Oaks Advance to Tournament Semifinals

ESF upsets third-seeded Concordia College, 3-0

The ESF Mighty Oaks men's soccer team won its first-round game in the 2012 U.S. Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) National Championship Tournament Thursday afternoon.

The sixth-seeded Mighty Oaks upset third-seeded Concordia College 3-0. The Mighty Oaks took a 1-0 lead into halftime on a goal by Dillon Buchberg. In the second half, Kyle Bardwell scored with 20 minutes left in the game. Five minutes later, Kyle Siegel put the ball in the bottom left corner of the net to put the Mighty Oaks up 3-0.

The Mighty Oaks will play again at 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 2, when they face the second-seeded Golden Bears of West Virginia University Institute of Technology. The Golden Bears won their first-round game by defeating Penn College 10-0 Thursday.

The championship game is set for 1 p.m. Saturday at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, N.C.

The Mighty Oaks were invited to the tournament in only their third season as a varsity intercollegiate team.

"We are extremely happy to be making ESF's first appearance in the USCAA's championship event. The team has trained very hard for this and is well prepared," said Coach Dan Ramin. "Qualifying for this event has been a team goal for the last three years."

In other first round games, host Warren Wilson College was scheduled to play the University of Maine-Fort Kent, which earned the top seed in the tournament after finishing the regular season at 15-1. Yankee Conference men's champion NHTI, Concord's Community College of New Hampshire, was set to battle a one-loss Briarcliffe College team from Long Island in the four versus five match-up.

The men's bracket features three teams returning to Asheville for a second consecutive year: the University of Maine-Fort Kent, Briarcliffe College and Warren Wilson College.