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REDLANDS — The Occidental men's soccer team is headed to the SCIAC Tournament Championship game.
Oxy is making its first SCIAC Tournament Championship appearance in program history. The Tigers had been to the SCIAC Semifinal twice, but lost both times at Redlands.
The Tigers will host No. 4 Chapman at 7 p.m. at Jack Kemp Stadium on Saturday. The Panthers beat No. 1 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps in a penalty shootout on Thursday to advance.
Redlands goalkeeper Noah Natividad was issued a red card in the 67th minute, taking out Liam Walsh on a break away on the left side of the field. The senior captain from Washington, D.C. looked like he may have had a shot from outside the box with an empty net. As he tried to touch the ball past Natividad, the keeper reached out and grabbed his leg, sending Walsh falling forward as the whistle blew.
The enthusiastic and packed Redlands crowd went quiet, knowing the red card was coming out.
Walsh took the ensuing free kick and found Ryan Wilson at the back post, but his header was saved nicely by Emilio Raby-Newson, who was fresh into the game after the card.
Shortly after Natividad was sent off, Rosso found Eble on the right side where he hit a line-drive shot far post into the back of the net.
The game was far from over and got more anxious as Redlands grew desperate, sending more and more players forward.
The Bulldogs' best chance to equalize came on a shot by Kayvon Parsa that hit the post with 6 minutes to play.
Oxy had the first two chances of the game in the 9th minute. Rosso had a left-footed shot saved and then Walsh hit a shot that needed a defensive save from Nick DeQuiroz to prevent it from going into the goal.
Walsh hit a nice bending shot on a free kick that was headed for the goal, but Redlands' goalkeeper Noah Natividad made a great one-handed, diving save to force a corner kick.
Oxy fullback David Paine made a couple of nice defensive plays midway through the first half, running with and pressuring Anthony Chonga so he couldn't get clean looks at the goal on runs forward. He also hit a shot as the first half seconds ticked down that missed the top corner a little high.
Redlands' best chance of the first half was a header by Parsa that missed wide left in the 32nd minute.
Redlands had the first good chance of the second half after 5 quiet minutes. Chonga made a run and a solid move to get free up the left side of the field and hit a hard line drive toward the near post. Scott Drazan wasn't fooled and made a nice diving save to keep the score at 0-0.
The Bulldogs picked up their pace and grabbed the momentum for the next 20 minutes of the second half.
Ryan Wilson had Oxy's first great effort of the second half, hitting a left-footed line-drive that needed a save from Natividad.
The Tigers put in a free kick from Riley McCabe that took a deflection in the 77th minute, but they were whistled for being offside.
Oxy/Redlands this year
The Tigers lost 4-3 in a high-scoring game at Redlands earlier this season with Liam Walsh recording a hat-trick, and fell 2-1 in a game at home.Follow Oxy Athletics on Twitter Sign Up for Newsletters Watch on Youtube Follow us on Instagram