Mystic River Turns in A Gutty Performance Against A Tough Belmont Shore side to Win Men’s Division I

For the second time in three years Mystic River, are the Men’s Division I Club National Champions, as they see off Belmont Shore in a thrilling finish 25-24.

Glendale, CO.- For the second time in three years Mystic River, are the Men's Division I Club National Champions, as they see off Belmont Shore in a thrilling finish 25-24.

 Mystic River's head coach, Josh Smith, said after the game, "This group of players is a special group of players... This is what the club has been about all season... We've been a gutty team all year." There was never a time where that was more evident than tonght's match.

 In the lead up to the game, most expected a hard, physical and close match up with plenty of scoring, they were right. It took next to no time for the first points of the game to be scored, as Mystic River opened the scoring in the first two minutes, after scooping up a loose pass just outside Belmont's 22 and strolled in from there.  Unpeturbed by the quick start by Mystic River, Belmont was calm and poised as they marched down the field minutes later to win a penalty and cut the lead to four. It didn't take too long for Belmont to get right back into the attacking half of Mystic and find themselves three points richer. After fifteen minutes it was a 7-6 game.

Just when Belmont looked to have taken control of the fixture, Mystic proved that they were just as capable of conducting the field, scoring fifteen points in the space of just over ten minutes. In the blink of an eye it looked as if Mystic has played themselves into another championship. However, a break from Belmont and a fortuitous bounce off the knee of one of their players saw Belmont score in the corner just seconds before half time, to cut what had been a 16 point deficit moments ago in half. Going into the half it was Mystic River 22, Belmont Shore 14.

The Second half got off to a dramatic start, Mystic looked as if they had scored against the flow of play in the corner, only to have it called back for illegal play around the breakdown. If Mystic thought that was bad, it was about to get a lot worse, as in the 47th minute, they lost their outside center for the remainder of the game for a shoulder to the head of a Belmont player. Moments later, the man advantage was put to full use and Belmont found themselves within three points of the lead.

A man down and only up by three many teams would have tried to shut down shop and hope to hold their lead, not Mystic. They continued to fight and provide themselves with opportunities to extend their lead, but missed shots at goal haunted them and with ten minutes left they only lead by 10. Belmont knowing that time was of the essence worked their way down the field and continued to probe patiently at the Mystic defense. Chipping away phase after phase eventually paid off as in the 79th minute they crossed the line, and with a conversion would take the lead. The kick was wide right, and Mystic survived a late charge from Belmont on the last play of the game to win the national title, 25-24.