MVC Player of the Year Jose Gomez and MVC Defensive Player of the Year Andrew Ribeiro scored second-half goals to give Creighton the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament title with a 2-1 win over SIU Edwardsville Sunday afternoon in Peoria, Illinois.
The title is Creighton's (15-3-2) second consecutive tournament title, fifth in eight years and 13th in the 22-year history of the event. The Bluejays have won 10 straight matches and improved to 11-1 in games decided by one goal.
Gomez scored his sixth goal of the year in the 69th minute off an assist from Brent Kallman, giving Creighton a 1-0 lead. Almost exactly 10 minutes later, SIUE evened the match when Jared Tejada headed in a ball to the left side netting with 10:23 to play.
Creighton's game-winning score came from Ribeiro after Benito Amaral was taken down in the box and a penalty kick was awarded. Ribeiro's penalty shot was saved by a sprawling John Berner, but Ribeiro followed his miss with a left-footed volley into the open net.
Jeff Gal made two saves for Creighton, improving to 11-0-0 in net this season. SIUE out-shot Creighton 15-10, though the Bluejays had a 6-3 edge in shots on goal.
The game was played in wind which gusted as high as 53 mph and the final four minutes were played in a driving rainstorm.
The Jays now await Monday afternoon's NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship selection show to determine who they'll play in the NCAA Tournament. The Bluejays have earned a tournament berth 20 times in the last 21 years.
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