Courtesy: David Noblett
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Four For The Finals
Courtesy: CBU  
Release: 11/29/2012
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KISSIMMEE, Fla. --- California Baptist University had two goals coming into this season; repeat as PacWest Champions and then repeat as NCCAA Champs.

The Lancers already crossed off the first goal on that list, when they took the conference crown in a win over Point Loma on Oct. 30.

CBU now has that second in its crosshairs as the Lancers moved on to finals at the NCCAA National Tournament with a 4-0 victory over Grace on Thursday.

"We knew where we wanted to be and what we wanted to accomplish, but we also knew we had to take things one game at a time and the girls have done that," said CBU Head Coach Kristen St. Clair. "This team has been so focused and worked so hard all year to get to this point and we are truly honored to be one of the last two teams standing here at the end of the season."

CBU came out firing from the get go, taking nine shots in the opening half while allowing Grace just two in the entire first period, but the goals would not come easy early for the Lancers.

"They stuck to their game plan and made it a little tough for us early in the game," said St. Clair. "The girls fought through it though and we finally got on track. We had some tremendous goals in this game."

Bernadette Witz just missed on a pair of breakaways in the half before Natosha Yanes finally broke through for CBU.

Yanes gave the Lancers their first goal of the day as she used her body to shield the ball in traffic through the right side of the box and then fired a shot past the Grace keeper just inside the left post. The 39th minute strike was her fifth goal of the season as CBU took a 1-0 lead into the half.

Witz was finally able to break through in the second period after some beautiful quick passing from CBU in the box found Witz in front of the net for her 14th goal of the season. Kimberly Allard and Kelly Jenks played the give and go game to set Witz up for the nifty goal.

The Lancers added two more before the final whistle sounded, getting a second out of Yanes late in the game as she played it past the keeper on a break.

Lindsay Vesling nabbed her second goal of the tournament when she fired a rocket into the back of the net from 30 yards out in the 74th minute, scoring a goal coach St. Clair described as possibly the goal of the year.

"It was like they were trying to make each goal better than the last," said St. Clair. "Grace made us work for our goals today. Each one we scored was the result of some fantastic play. Top to bottom it was a great performance."

CBU outshot Grace 23-4, allowing just two shots in each half. Rosie Nakata came up with three saves for the Lancers in the game. Carmen Barnhill had to make nine saves as CBU put 13 balls on target.

CBU takes its 17-2-1 record to the final game on Saturday where they will face Southern Nazarene at 12 p.m. (PST).

A win would not only secure the Lancers their second straight NCCAA title, but it would extend the team's program record 13 game win streak and also match the CBU record for wins in a season at 18, which was set last year.



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