Sixth-Ranked UCLA Men's Soccer Team Faces Fullerton Friday
Sept. 3, 2002
This Week - The UCLA men's soccer team (2-0-0, ranked sixth by Soccer America and seventh by the NSCAA) take on Cal State Fullerton (1-0-1) on Friday, Sept. 6 at 7:00 pm. It will be the Bruins' third consecutive game at Fullerton's Titan Stadium; the Bruins opened the season last weekend with a pair of games there, both victories.
Scouting The Opponents - The Titans finished second behind the Bruins with a 1-0-1 record in tournament play at the Cal State Fullerton Soccer Town Classic. Fullerton defeated FIU, 3-2 on day one and tied Boston, 0-0, on the final day of play. Junior Hector Orellana scored two goals against FIU and claimed Tournament Offensive MVP honors.
The Series - UCLA leads the all-time series against Cal State Fullerton, 25-7-2 and won the last contest, 4-1 at home in 2001. However, the Titans have been dominant against the Bruins at home, winning the last four games at Titan Stadium. UCLA's last road win against Fullerton came in 1995, a 4-0 victory.
UCLA Wins Soccer Town Classic - The Bruins continued their dominance at Cal State Fullerton's Tournament, capturing the team title at the Soccer Town Classic this past weekend. The Bruins were a perfect 2-0 in the tournament, earning victories over Boston University (4-1) and Florida International (1-0, overtime on a Jimmy Frazelle golden goal). UCLA's unbeaten record at Fullerton's tournament remains intact at 12-0. The Bruins' win over Boston also improved UCLA's all-time season opener record to 30-3.
Gregorio Keys Bruin Win Over Boston - UCLA junior midfielder Adolfo Gregorio scored two goals, including the game-winner, and assisted on another to lead the Bruins to a 4-1 victory over Boston University in the season opener. With the Bruins and Terriers tied at 1-1 in the second half, Gregorio led UCLA on a three-goal scoring spurt in a 10-minute span. Gregorio scored the game-winner in the 70th minute, assisted on an insurance goal in the 76th and scored his second goal in the 79th minute. The multiple-goal game was Gregorio's first of his collegiate career. For his efforts, Gregorio was selected the Pac-10 Player of the Week.
Thompson Selected Defensive MVP - Senior defender Scot Thompson was selected the Most Outstanding Defensive Player at the Soccer Town Classic. Thompson, who was named by Soccer America as a pre-season All-American, helped the Bruin defense limit Boston to just seven shots (two on goal) and Florida International to just five shots (two on goal).
Freshmen Make Collegiate Debuts - True freshmen Evan Corey, Jordan Harvey Luke Mehring and Nate Pena each made their collegiate debuts last weekend at the Fullerton Tournament. Against Boston, Corey, Mehring and Pena saw action, with Corey registering a shot attempt and Pena shutting out the Terriers for five minutes. Against FIU, Harvey, who had just flown back from a U-20 tournament in Spain, played 42 minutes, while Corey played 15.
2002 Season Outlook - UCLA begins the 2002 season under first-year head coach Tom Fitzgerald. The group of returning players should make it a smooth transition for Fitzgerald, who is inheriting eight returning starters, including U.S. Under-23 National Team defender Scot Thompson , 2001 UCLA Team MVP Zach Wells (0.85 GAA, nine shutouts), NSCAA All-Far West selection Tim Pierce (10 g, 2a) and first-team All-Pac-10 performers Adolfo Gregorio (2g, 4a) and Ryan Futagaki (3g, 3a). UCLA returns 97% of its goal scoring from last year's team that advanced to the NCAA third round.
Head Coach Tom Fitzgerald - Armed with 24 years of coaching experience at the high school, collegiate, professional and national team levels, head coach Tom Fitzgerald begins his first season at the helm of the UCLA men's soccer program. Fitzgerald coached Major League Soccer's Columbus Crew from 1996-2001 and led his team to three consecutive Eastern Conference finals from 1997-99. Prior to joining the pro ranks, Fitzgerald was head coach at the University of Tampa from 1987-96. He guided his team to the 1994 NCAA Division II National Championship and to NCAA Final Four appearances two other times. His teams received NCAA post-season tournament berths all nine seasons.