Husky Men Head To OSU For Regular Season Finale
Nov. 10, 2004
The ninth-ranked Washington men's soccer team (11-5-2, 4-2-1 Pac-10) looks to snap a two-game losing skid when it heads south to Corvallis, Ore., for its regular season finale with Oregon State, Sunday, Nov. 14, at 1 p.m. The Beavers (7-10-1, 1-6-0) have won two-straight including a 1-0 upset of No. 2 UCLA on Nov. 7, after the Bruins clinched the Pac-10 title with a 2-1 victory over Washington, Nov. 5. The Huskies look to finish the conference slate strong, holding on to their second-place standing in the Pac-10. Washington is aiming for its ninth postseason appearance in the last 10 seasons and will learn its fate when the NCAA Selections are announced, Monday, Nov. 15.
The 48-team field selected to compete in the 2004 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship will be announced Monday, Nov. 15, between 1 and 2 p.m. PT on ESPNews. Immediately following the announcement, a copy of the bracket will be available at www.ncaasports.com. All matches through the fourth round will be played on campus sites, while the 2004 College Cup (semifinals and finals) will be held at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., Dec. 10 and Dec. 12.
Klaas Named A Semifinalist For M.A.C. Hermann Trophy:
For the second straight season, senior midfielder C.J. Klaas has been named one of 15 semifinalists for the Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy, the official National Soccer Coaches Assocation of America Player of the Year award for Division I competition. Klaas was one of 25 players named to the Hermann Trophy Watch List prior to the start of the season. The winner will be announced at a press conference in St. Louis, Mo., on Jan. 7, 2005. Already a highly decorated athlete for the Huskies, Klaas became the first Washington player to ever earn NSCAA first-team All-America acclaim last year. A preseason All-American this season, he is also vying to become the first three-time first-team All-Pac-10 player in school history. Klaas has started 17 games this season, and is second on the team in goals (four) and tied for first in assists (five).
Title Hopes Fall With 2-1 UCLA Loss:
The Huskies came up short in their bid for a second Pac-10 title, falling 2-1 to the second-ranked UCLA Bruins in front of a season-high crowd of 2,520 fans at Husky Soccer Field, Nov. 5. UCLA came back from a 1-0 halftime deficit to score a pair of goals in the second half. UW frosh forward Ely Allen scored the Huskies' lone goal in the 35th minute. The Huskies outshot the Bruins 9-4 in the first half, capped by Allen's picture perfect goal. Junior Leo Totev served a cross to Allen, whose long curling shot from 25- yards out sailed into the far corner of the net. UCLA came back after halftime and dominated play, with Ahmed Khalil scoring the equalizer in the 65th minute, and Pac-10 Player of the Week Benny Feilhaber scoring the gamewinner in the 80th minute.
Huskies In The National Rankings:
Washington fell in the polls this week, but remained a Top-20 team. UW moved down to No. 9 according to Soccer America and No. 21 in the NSCAA/adidas poll. Soccer Times and College Soccer News have the Huskies ranked 13th this week.
A Look At The Beavers:
Oregon State brings a two-match win streak into Sunday's season finale, having defeated Humboldt 10-0 on Nov. 5 and UCLA, 1-0, on Nov. 7. Until that point, the Beavers had lost six-straight. Senior forward Chad Bartlome notched a hat trick in the first half versus Humboldt, scoring three goals in the first 24 minutes. OSU also set several school records in that match, including points (25) and goals (10). The Beavers followed that up with an upset of UCLA, giving OSU its first Pac-10 win of the year.
Washington is looking for the season sweep against Oregon State, after the Huskies pulled out a 2-0 victory over the Beavers in Seattle, Oct. 17. The Huskies had never lost to the Beavers until 2002. Since then, OSU has won three of the last five meetings. Washington has struggled in Corvallis as of late, losing its last two matches in the Willamette Valley - 6-3 in 2002 and 3-1 in 2003. Washington leads the all-time series 25-3-2.
Huskies Against Ranked Opponents:
Washington has faced nine ranked opponents this season, compiling a 5-3-1 record. UW's victories came against No. 5 UConn, No. 25 Creighton, No. 12 UCLA, No. 3 California and No. 17 Stanford. The three losses came to then-No. 2 St. John's, No. 17 Cal and No. 2 UCLA, with the draw coming versus then-No. 7 Stanford. The Huskies are 2-2 against Top-5 opponents.
The Huskies are coming off back-to-back losses for the first time since 2003...the last time UW dropped back-to-back games was to California and UCLA, Nov. 2 and Nov. 7, 2003...In 11 victories, Washington has shutout its opponent 10 times...only once have the Huskies allowed a goal in a winning effort, coming in a 2-1 win over Creighton, Sept. 12...despite its last place standing, OSU leads the Pac-10 in points (18), goals (38) and goals per game (2.11)...UW leads the league in goals allowed (12), saves (73), goals against average (0.64) and is tied for the lead in shutouts (10)...junior goalkeeper Chris Eylander made a Pac-10 leading eight saves in the win over Creighton...the Huskies are winless when playing past regulation...UW has recorded two draws and two losses in overtime...the Huskies are perfect in penalty kick attempts, going 3-for-3...junior midfielder Mike Chabala has scored all three of his goals this year on penalty kicks...three Huskies lead the team with five assists each - C.J. Klaas, Casey Armstrong and Mike Chabala.
Strong Conference Start:
The last time the Huskies went unbeaten in their first four conference matches was 2000 - the year they won the inaugural Pac-10 crown. That season UW opened Pac-10 play with wins over Oregon State, Stanford and Cal. This year UW defeated UCLA, Cal and Oregon State, while tying with Stanford in the first half of conference play.
Eylander Making Most of Starting Role:
After platooning with Danny Waltman as a freshman and serving as a back-up to Waltman last season, junior Chris Eylander finally owns the starting goalkeeping position for the Huskies in 2004. Eylander has made the most of his new role, recording 10 shutouts and allowing just 12 goals. His 0.64 goals against average ranks seventh on UW's single-season list, while his 10 shutouts rank third. Only Mark Schuur has tallied more shutouts in a single season, posting 14 shutouts in 1982 and 11 in 1981. Eylander started out the year allowing just one goal in UW's first four games, with that lone goal coming from the nation's second-ranked team in St. John's. For his early season efforts, Eylander became the first Husky this year to earn Pac-10 Player of the Week honors.
Harden Solidifies The Defense:
Sophomore Ty Harden, a second-team All-Pac-10 player as a freshman, has been a model of consistency for the Huskies being the only player besides goalie Chris Eylander to start all 18 games. A central defender, Harden has been the glue for the Husky backline which has held its opponents to 12 goals in 18 matches. UW has not allowed more than two goals in a single game and has held its opponents scoreless 10 times. Harden got involved in UW's offensive attack versus Cal on Oct. 8, scoring his first goal of the year on a header off a corner kick.
UW's six-game road trip to open the season was its longest since opening with its first seven games on the road in 1999. That year, UW played in three tournaments before coming home to Husky Soccer Field. In 1999, Washington posted an overall record of 15-5 and finished first in the Mountain Division of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation.
Sharing The Wealth:
Eleven different Huskies have accounted for UW's 27 goals this season. Sophomore Kevin Forrest leads the team with six goals, while senior C.J. Klaas has four and senior Casey Armstrong, junior Mike Chabala and freshman Ely Allen have three. Freshman Brett Hite and senior Brett Wiesner each have two. Juniors Leo Totev, Jeff Hoover and Evan Cummings each have one goal, as does sophomore Ty Harden.
Head Coach Dean Wurzberger:
In his 13th season at the helm of the Washington men's soccer program, head coach Dean Wurzberger has guided the Huskies to eight NCAA tournament berths in nine seasons. He reached the 150 win milestone for both his career and Washington overall records last year. Wurzberger's 150th career win came with a 1-0 victory over Portland, Sept. 5, 2003, while his 150th win as Husky head coach came with Washington's 3-1 win over Stanford, Oct. 31, 2003. Wurzberger has an overall head coaching mark of 172-75-30 (12 years at Washington, one year at Sacramento State). Under Wurzberger's guidance, Washington was one of only seven schools in the country to make seven consecutive NCAA tournament appearances from 1995 to 2001. His 2000 team won the inaugural Pac-10 Conference championship, following two consecutive Mountain Pacific Sports Federation titles. Wurzberger's overall record of 164-67-25 at Washington makes him the winningest head coach in Husky history. His assistant coaches are Seth Spidahl, Matthew Olson and Darren Sawatzky.
Joe Birklid Online Diary:
Senior defender Joe Birklid is chronicling the Huskies' 2004 season with an online diary at www.gohuskies.com. The diary can be accessed by clicking on the men's soccer page.
Washington's postseason fate will be determined on Monday, Nov. 15, when the 48-team NCAA bracket is announced on ESPNews between 1 and 2 p.m. PT.