Cal Entertains Saint Mary's, No. 1 Santa Clara

Sept. 25, 2007

BERKELEY, Calif. - CAL RETURNS HOME AT LAST: After shutting out six of its first eight opponents and wrapping up a six-game road swing, California (6-2) returns home to host Saint Mary's (4-2-2) Friday, Sept. 28, at 4 p.m. at Edwards Stadium. The Golden Bears then travel to No. 1 Santa Clara (6-0-1) Sunday, Sept. 30, at 1 p.m. at Buck Shaw Stadium to wrap up their non-conference schedule. Cal junior midfielder/forward Nikki Schrey led Saint Mary's in points in 2005 (15) and 2006 (13).

CAL IN THE POLLS: The polls weren't kind to Cal following the Bears' loss at Missouri. The Bears are ranked 30th by Soccer Buzz and fell out of the Soccer America poll. The NSCAA and Soccer Times polls will be released later today.

BEARS EARN MIDWEST SPLIT: Cal, which is known for its defense, suffered a surprising 4-0 setback at No. 20 Missouri Sept. 21. The Tigers led 1-0 at the half and went up 2-0 with a goal in the 57th minute. With the Bears pushing numbers forward in their attack, Missouri secured two more goals in the final 13 minutes. Cal posted a 1-0 victory at Kansas Sept. 23 on the strength of a 66th-minute goal by redshirt sophomore forward Katherine Daiss off an assist by redshirt sophomore forward Torrey Delaplane. It was Daiss' second career game-winning goal. Sophomore goalkeeper Gina Pellegrini grabbed a career-high six saves to earn her third shutout of the season and seventh of her career.

SHUTOUT TREND CONTINUES IN 2007: Cal has become synonymous with shutouts in recent years. In 2005, Cal tied the school record with 14 shutouts and followed that effort with 12 shutouts in 2006. The Bears have registered shutouts in 32 of their last 52 games (61.5 percent), including six of eight outings this season. Gina Pellegrini and freshman Jorden Kussman have shared time in goal for the Bears this year. The backline unit of seniors Courtney Hooker and Kristine Relja, junior Nkechi Kanu, sophomore Brianna Bak and freshman Megan Jesolva have played integral roles in the Bears' stingy defense.

WIEGER, DAISS LEAD BALANCED CAL OFFENSE: Nine players have accounted for Cal's 13 goals this season. Seniors Caitlin Hannegan, Stephanie Wieger and Caroline Lea and Katherine Daiss lead the way with two goals each. Katie Oakes, Valerie Barnes, Kelly Menachof, Torrey Delaplane and Alex Morgan each have registered one goal. Wieger, who was Cal's top returner this year with nine points in 2006, and Daiss pace the Bears with six points in 2007. Daiss entered the year with three previous career points in 2005. Hannegan, who recorded four career points entering this season, is second on the team with five points. Wieger and Daiss are tied for the team lead with two assists.

DAISS-CAL FAMILY AFFAIR: Katherine Daiss' grandfather, Carlton Daiss, played tennis at Cal. Katherine has identified 32 relatives who attended Cal, including both parents, two grandparents and three great-grandparents.

LOWE'S SENIOR CLASS AWARD: Courtney Hooker was one of 20 players selected as a finalist for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, which is given to a senior men's and women's student-athlete who excels on and off the field. The award is presented annually in eight Division I sports. Hooker is one of three Pac-10 players on the women's soccer list (UCLA's Val Henderson and Stanford's Rachel Buehler are the others.)

SCOUTING SMC, SANTA CLARA: Saint Mary's is riding a three-game winning streak and owns a 12-9 goal edge over its opponents. Allie Weiner leads the team with 13 points (4G, 5A). Alex Ciliento has also notched four goals for the Gaels. Cal leads the all-time series with Saint Mary's, 12-8-3, and has won the last two outings, including a 2-1 2OT win in Moraga in 2005. No. 1 Santa Clara erupted for a 7-1 victory over No. 2 Notre Dame the second game of the season. Brittany Klein paces the Broncos with nine points (4G, 1A). Cal leads the all-time series with Santa Clara, 14-13-3, on the heels of a 1-0 overtime triumph in Berkeley in 2006. Stephanie Wieger was credited with the game-winning score over the fourth-ranked Broncos. Cal has faced Santa Clara more times (30) than any other opponent in its school history.

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