Husky Men Kick Off 2007 Season At Nike Portland Invitational
Aug. 28, 2007
Nike Portland Invitational
Portland, Ore. Merlo Field
Fri., Aug. 31 - #18 Washington (0-0-0) vs. New Hampshire (0-0-0) 4:30 p.m.
Sun., Sept. 2 - #18 Washington (0-0-0) vs. Cal State Bakersfield (0-0-0) 12 p.m.
Live scoring available at PortlandPilots.com
rankings according to NSCAA adidas poll
This Week: The Washington men's soccer team, ranked 18th in the NSCAA/adidas preseason poll, kicks off its 2007 campaign at the Nike Portland Invitational in Portland, Ore., this weekend. The Huskies (0-0-0) will play their season opener versus New Hampshire (0-0-0), Friday, Aug. 31, at 4:30 p.m. UW will continue tournament play on Sunday, Sept. 2, versus Cal State Bakersfield (0-0-0) at noon. The host Pilots will take on Cal State Bakersfield on Friday at 7 p.m. and New Hampshire on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. This weekend's tournament marks the beginning of a five-game season-opening road stretch for the Huskies. After a stop at Gonzaga, Sept. 7, UW will head to a tournament in New Mexico (Sept. 14 and 16) before finally making its home debut with rival Portland, Tues., Sept. 18, at 7 p.m.
In the Rankings: In the preseason polls, Washington is ranked 18th by NSCAA/adidas and Soccer Times, and 17th by College Soccer News. Soccer America has not yet announced its first full Top-25 poll of the season.
2007 Season Preview: Washington is eager to take the pitch for the first time this season, returning nine starters and 14 letterwinners from last year's squad that advanced as far as the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Leading the way for the Huskies this year will be the senior forward tandem of Kevin Forrest and Ely Allen. Forrest is on the watch list for the 2007 MAC Hermann Trophy and was the 2006 Pac-10 Player of the Year, scoring a conference-leading 16 goals. Allen (7 goals/6 assists in 2006) is a decorated player in his own right, garnering All-Pac-10 acclaim the last three seasons. Forrest and Allen were 2006 NSCAA All-Region selections, in addition to junior midfielder George John (4 g/7 a). John had a breakout campaign as a sophomore and will share the co-captain duties with Forrest. Also returning is sophomore goalkeeper Rylan Hawkins (1.02 gaa/7 sho) who is coming off a stellar rookie debut in 2006 and junior midfielder Raphael Cox (4 g/9 a) who made an immediate impact on the squad in his first season last year. The biggest task ahead for UW will be replacing graduated central defenders Matt Fischer (three-year starter) and Ty Harden (four-year starter, NSCAA All-American). Tabbed to step in will be sophomores Casey Cunningham and Taylor Hoss, both having seen minutes on the pitch as freshmen. Hoss especially made an impact as a rookie, starting all but one match in the Husky backline last year. Washington's newcomers will get a chance to prove themselves early, led by U-17 U.S. National Team forward Ellis McLoughlin who is currently playing with U.S. in the FIFA U-17 World Cup.
Five Wins and Counting...: Husky head coach Dean Wurzberger, in his 16th season at the helm of the Husky men's soccer program, needs just five more wins to reach 200 in his career. Wurzberger was the head coach at Sacramento State for one season (1985) before taking over the reins at Washington. His career record stands at 195-91-33, while his UW record is 187-83-28. Under Wurzberger's guidance, the Huskies have reached the NCAA Tournament 11 times and annually rank among the nation's top teams.
Another Milestone To Look For...: The Huskies need just four more wins to reach 500 in the history of the UW men's soccer program. The all-time men's soccer record, dating back to 1963, is 496-197-77.
Scouting New Hampshire: Friday marks the first-ever meeting between Washington and New Hampshire. Like the Huskies, the Wildcats will be making their season debut in Portland. UNH compiled a 12-5-3 overall record last season (its best since 1994), including a 6-2-1 mark in the America East. The Wildcats are led by 2006 America East Rookie of the Year Chris Banks (the league's leading scorer as a freshman) and second-team All-America East defender John Bergqvist. UNH is coached by Rob Thompson who begins his 13th season with the Wildcats.
Scouting Cal State Bakersfield: Sunday's meeting between Cal State Bakersfield and Washington will be the first in the all-time series. The Roadrunners will open their season versus Portland on Friday before facing the Huskies. CSB has eight starters returning from last year's squad that posted a 13-5-2 overall record. This season marks the first that Cal State Bakersfield will be a member of the NCAA Division I ranks, having been previously affiliated with Division II. The Roadrunners are a young team with their roster featuring just one senior, defender T.J. Brown. CSB is coached by Simon Tobin in his 21st season at the helm of the Roadrunner program.
Forrest Garners Preseason Accolades: Senior forward Kevin Forrest already has a couple preseason accolades under his belt, being named to the 2007 Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy Watch List and earning preseason first-team All-America status from College Soccer News. Forrest was the 2006 Pac-10 Player of the Year and a 2006 first-team NSCAA/adidas All-Far West selection. He led the Pac-10 in every offensive statistical category last year including goals (16), while ranking eighth in the nation in goals per game (0.84) and 14th in points per game (1.74). Not only a standout on the field, Forrest was named an NSCAA Scholar All-American last season as well. Players are selected to the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List by a committee of Division I coaches who are NSCAA members. In November, the list will be narrowed to 15 semifinalists. Three finalists will be named in early December in conjunction with the NCAA Division I College Cup and will be invited to the Missouri Athletic Club on Fri., Jan. 11, 2008. The winner of the 2007 award will be announced during a nationally-televised new conference that evening.
Huskies Projected To Tie For Second In Pac-10 Coaches' Poll: Washington was projected to tie for second in the 2007 Pac-10 standings according to a preseason poll of the league's coaches, the Pac-10 office announced Aug. 13. The Huskies received 20 points - including a pair of first-place votes - and were predicted to tie for second with California which captured its first-ever Pac-10 title last season. NCAA runner-up UCLA was picked to win the conference crown for the sixth consecutive season. UCLA (23 votes) received three first-place votes with the remaining first-place tally going to California. Stanford (13 votes) was predicted to finish fourth, followed by San Diego State (nine) and Oregon State (five). Last season the Pac-10 received four NCAA Tournament berths for the first time since 2003, as California, San Diego State, UCLA and Washington all made their way into the 48-team field.
Dawg Bites: Senior forward Kevin Forrest needs one more goal to crack Washington's career Top-10 scoring list...with 28 goals, Forrest's next score will tie Eddie Henderson (1985-89/29 goals) for 10th...Forrest needs seven goals to tie his father Ward (1972-75/36 goals) for sixth on the all-time list...the Huskies will look to continue their offensive firepower this year after outscoring their opponents by a 20-goal margin (41-21) in 2006...UW has not lost a season opener since 2000 (at Creighton, 0-2).
Injury Update: Junior midfielder Jo Jo Katz (Mission Viejo, Calif.) and senior midfielder Steve Mohn (Kent) will most likely miss the season due to injuries. Katz is recovering from a torn ACL suffered during the 2007 spring season and Mohn suffered a broken leg during summer league play.
McLoughlin At The World Cup: Incoming freshman Ellis McLoughlin (Seattle, Wash.) is a member of the U.S. U-17 National Team currently competing in the FIFA World Cup in South Korea. The U.S. advanced into second round play and will face Germany on Thursday. McLoughlin's team lost its first two first-round games to Tajikastan and Tunisia, before rebounding with a 2-0 victory Belgium. McLoughlin, who will join the Huskies when the U.S. is finished playing in South Korea, has been in the U.S. Soccer Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. for two years. He has also been the team's leading scorer the last two seasons.
Fab Frosh: Washington's 2007 incoming recruiting class is ranked 17th in the nation by College Soccer News. For good measure, the online publication has selected defender Taylor Mueller (Sammamish, Wash.) as one of its 100 'Freshman to Keep An Eye On' this season. In addition to McLoughlin and Mueller, UW's outstanding freshman class includes defender Jamie Finch (Bothell), defender Brad Keller (Scottsdale, Ariz.), forward Beau Macaluso (Tacoma), and midfielder/forward Matt Van Houten (Portland, Ore.).
2006 Season Review: In 2006, Washington finished the season with a 13-7-1 overall record and placed fifth in the Pac-10 (4-5-1). The Huskies earned an NCAA Tournament berth for the 10th time in 12 years and advanced as far as the second round. Behind Kevin Forrest's hat trick, UW defeated Creighton 3-0 in the first round in Seattle before falling at Santa Clara in the second round in overtime, 3-2. The Huskies started the year 8-0-0, their longest unbeaten and untied streak to open a season in program history, which garnered them a No. 4 national ranking for three weeks. Scoring a Pac-10 leading 16 goals, Forrest was named the 2006 Pac-10 Player of the Year while six of his teammates also earned All-Pac-10 acclaim. Forrest (first-team) was joined on the NSCAA All-Far West Region team by senior defender Ty Harden (first-team), junior forward Ely Allen (second-team) and sophomore midfielder George John (second-team). Harden earned NSCAA third-team All-American honors and was drafted by the L.A. Galaxy in the Major League Soccer SuperDraft.
Head Coach Dean Wurzberger: Husky coach Dean Wurzberger is in his 16th year at the helm of the Washington men's soccer program. The 2004 Pac-10 Co-Coach of the Year and the all-time winningest coach in program history, Wurzberger has spent over a decade building the Husky program into one of the nation's finest, fielding teams that annually compete for conference and national championships. Under his tutelage, the Huskies have reached the NCAA Tournament 10 times in the last 12 years, including a school-record Sweet 16 trip in 2003. His record at Washington seasons stands at a stellar 187-83-28 (.675).
Ticket Information: Tickets for all Husky home matches are on sale now either online at gohuskies.com or by calling the Husky Ticket Office at 206-543-2200. Tickets may also be purchased at the field on game day. Individual tickets prices are $6 for adults, $4 for children/seniors and $3 for groups of 15 or more purchased in advance. A general admission season pass is also available that provides admission throughout the year to volleyball, soccer, gymnastics, baseball, softball and non-conference women's basketball games. Prices for the season pass are $40 for adults, $30 for children/seniors and $85 for a family of four.
Up Next: The Huskies continue their season-opening road trip traveling to Spokane, Wash., for a battle with cross-state rival Gonzaga, Friday, Sept. 7 at 4 p.m.