Cal Opens the 2002 Season at Loyola Marymount Tournament
Aug. 26, 2002
WHATS ON TAP: California kicks off the 2002 season Friday, Aug. 30, at the Loyola Marymount Tournament. The Golden Bears first face Cal State Northridge at 12:30 p.m., at Sullivan Field. Cal finished the 2001 season with a 10-9-1 record (3-5-0 Pac-10, 4th) while the Matadors were 9-7-3 (4-4-2 MPSF, 2nd). Head coach Terry Davlla enters his fourth season with Northridge, returning nine starters and 13 letterwinners. They last met in 2000, where Northridge edged over Cal, 1-0, in Northridge.
The Bears' second game of the tournament is against the host, Loyola Marymount, on Sunday, Sept. 1 at 3 p.m., also at Sullivan Field. The Lions are coming off a 9-7-2 season (2-3-1, WCC, 5th), including a win over the Bears, 1-0, in Los Angeles. They are led by Paul Krumpe, who begins his fifth year as head coach, after loosing only three starters and returning 19 letterwinners.
BEARS PICKED FOURTH IN PAC-10 PRESEASON POLL: Cal was picked to finish fourth in the preseason Pac-10 men's soccer coaches poll, as released on Aug. 19th. 2001 Pac-10 champions, Stanford, was picked to repeat the title. Stanford received 34 votes, including four first-place votes, edging over second place UCLA, who received two first-place votes, 31 points total. Washington was picked for third place (24), then California (18) and Oregon State (10). Fresno State rounded up the poll in sixth place with nine points, as they enter their first season competing in the Pac-10.
CAL LOOKS FOR FIRST BACK-TO-BACK NCAA TOURNAMENT SINCE 1986: The 2001 NCAA postseason berth for the Bears was the first since 1996 and the 8th bid in Cal history. They look to reach again this year, for the first back-to-back appearance since 1986, where they competed in the Midwest Regionals. Losing only three starters and returning 18 letterwinners, head coach Kevin Grimes will rely on senior goalkeeper Josh Saunders to lead the way for the 2002 season. Saunders posted an impressive junior year, including being selected to the first team All-Pac-10 with five shutouts and a 1.13 GAA.
A YOUNG TEAM ONCE AGAIN FOR CAL: With three-fourths of the roster as either freshman (9) or sophomores (12), Cal will rely on their two seniors, Saunders and Patrick Fisher to lead the young talent to another victorious season. Highlighting the incoming class are midfielders Nick Hatzke (5-9, 155) and Tyson Wahl (6-2, 185), forwards Pieter Berger (6-3, 200) and Matt Holtrust (6-1, 155), junior defender Kevin Maffris (6-0, 160), a transfer from UCSB, and goalkeeper Mike Oseguera (5-11, 170).
Top returning sophomores include defender Troy Robets (5-10, 170), who has been invited to three U20 national team camps, starting in all 20 games last seaon for the Bears, Mike Munoz, Angel Quintero and Carl Acosta. Munoz was second on the team last year in points (13) with seven assists and Quintero finished second for the Bears in goals with five. Acosta stepped into Division I play with ease as a freshman, with two goals and five assists.
PRESEASON TRAINING IN LAKE TAHOE: For the second season in a row, the Bears have held their preseason training in Lake Tahoe. 'Preseason is always a time to get the team ready for their first game of the season. It helps to build team unity and to get the players mentally and physically prepared,' said head coach Kevin Grimes.