The Wildcats closed out their California adventure with a Saturday afternoon matchup against Hope International University. The Royals entered the contest undefeated and posed a strong competitor for the Wildcats from the opening whistle.
Mark Ramirez-Tapia (Longmont, Colo.) put the first shot on goal of the game in the 6th minute, but HIU's Ryan Brown made the stop. Josh Costello (Gold Coast, Australia) saw his 8th minute attempt blocked by the Royal's defense as JWU started to get early looks. The Royals started to find some offensive runs as the first half continued but their early attempts were off target.
Jordan Collier (Plainfield, Ill.) made the save on a shot by Cesar Cruz-Martinez in the 27th minute to keep the match scoreless. Collier made two more saves to close out the half as the two teams went into the half scoreless.
Michael Genge (Thornton, Colo.) took over in net for the Wildcats for the second half and made the save on the first shot he faced in the 58th minute.
The Royals were awarded a penalty kick after a foul in the box that sent Cruz-Martinez to the spot. He converted the attempt to give HIU a 1-0 lead in the 59th minute. Hope International added a second goal four minutes later as Shawn Dettmer finished a cross from Jorge Pineda.
Dean Rounsevell (Port Macquarie, Australia) broke through the Royal's defense in the 79th minute to get JWU on the board. Andy Siddoway (Sandy, Utah) and Lucas Prolow (Evergreen, Colo.) earned the assists. Genge made another save before the final whistle as Johnson & Wales fell 2-1.
Johnson & Wales had five shots and Genge and Collier combined to make five saves. The 'Cats were shown nine yellow cards and one red and were whistled for 15 fouls compared to the Royal's three yellows and nine fouls.
The 'Cats return home to host Oklahoma Baptist University next Saturday at 6:30pm at Dick's Sporting Goods Park.