UCLA Visits Cal State Northridge Saturday Afternoon

Sept. 25, 2007

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This Week -- After playing five of its first seven contests away from home, the UCLA men's soccer team (3-3-1, ranked No. 10 by Soccer America and No. 17 by the NSCAA) will play locally this week with a Saturday, Sept. 29 contest at Cal State Northridge (3-2-1). The game will take place at Matador Soccer Field at 4 pm.

Live Coverage -- Gametracker for Saturday's game can be accessed via the UCLA website at UCLABruins.com. Cal State Northridge will have a free online radio broadcast of the game at gomatadors.com.

In The Rankings -- UCLA drops to No. 10 in Soccer America's poll and 17th on the NSCAA/adidas coaches' poll. The Bruins remain at No. 15 in the Soccer Times poll and move up one to No. 18 in the College Soccer News rankings.

Scouting The Matadors -- Cal State Northridge is coming off a 4-0 loss to New Mexico last week and enters Saturday's game with a 3-2-1 record. Three Matador players - Sunghyun Kim, Devin Deldo and Camilo Rojas- lead the team in goals scored with three apiece. Goalkeeper Kevin Guppy has recorded three shutouts in six games and holds a goals against average of 1.17. The Matadors have been to the NCAA Tournament four times in the last five years.

UCLA's History With Cal State Northridge -- UCLA has never lost to Cal State Northridge in 14 games, holding a 12-0-2 overall record against the Matadors. The last two games between the teams have resulted in ties, 1-1 a year ago at UCLA and 0-0 in 2005 at Northridge. In last year's game, the Matadors jumped out to an early lead after a ninth-minute goal by Ryan Rossi, but the Bruins equalized in the 26th minute on defender Greg Folk's first career goal. UCLA keeper Eric Reed made his only save of the game in the final 10 seconds of the second overtime, leaping high to knock away a Rossi shot. In the 2005 contest, UCLA survived a red card in the 77th minute and held on for a 0-0 tie.

Estrada Expected Back Saturday -- The Bruin offense will get a huge boost this weekend with the return of 2006 leading scorer David Estrada. The sophomore forward has been out since undergoing foot surgery on Aug. 20 and is expected to make his season debut at Northridge. Last season, Estrada was Soccer America's Freshman of the Year after scoring 12 goals and four assists for 28 points, the second-most goals and points ever scored by a UCLA freshman. Estrada was selected a 2007 pre-season All-American by MLS Magazine. Estrada may be getting a late start to his season, but if last year is any indication, it does not take him long to get going. After spending much of the first half on 2006 on the bench and seeing just 334 minutes of action in the first 11 games, Estrada made the starting lineup in Game 12 and scored 11 of his 12 goals from that point on.

Zaher To Face Former Quakes Teammates -- Senior defender Mike Zaher will face several of his former San Fernando Valley Quakes (PDL) teammates on Saturday. Zaher was one of three Bruins who saw action with the Quakes this summer, playing in 11 games and scoring one goal and one assist. Sean Alvarado played in eight games, and Kyle Nakazawa played briefly with the team, seeing action in two games. Cal State Northridge players on the Quakes roster included Robert Pate, Sean Franklin, Chad Borak, Sunghyun Kim and Kevin Guppy. Additionally, Matador sophomore Dylan Riley played with UCLA's Jason Leopoldo and Chance Myers at Thousand Oaks HS and on the PDL's Ventura County Fusion this summer.

What Goes Around Comes Around -- After defeating San Francisco 1-0 on a late goal, the Bruins had the same thing happen to them just two nights later at Santa Clara, allowing the tying goal in the last five minutes and then losing in the first minute of overtime. At San Francisco, midfielder Chance Myers scored the game-winner at 87:49 after UCLA earned a free kick near the right corner. At Santa Clara, a long-range goal by defender Mike Zaher put UCLA ahead 1-0 at 37:09, but a red card in the 68th minute made it difficult for the Bruins to protect the lead. Santa Clara tied the game on a Peter Lowry goal at 85:29 and scored the game-winner just 39 seconds into overtime.

Folk, Zaher Nominated For Senior CLASS Award -- UCLA defenders Greg Folk and Mike Zaher are amongst 20 seniors nominated for the 2007 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award for men's soccer. The award is presented annually in eight NCAA Division I sports to a senior student-athlete who excels both on and off the field. The areas of excellence are identified under classroom, community, character and competition. Both players have been exemplary student-athletes, twice earning Pac-10 All-Academic honors. In addition, Zaher won UCLA's Team GPA award in 2006. Both have remained active in the community, participating in several community outreach projects and fundraisers. The two team co-captains have been starters for UCLA since their sophomore seasons, and last year Zaher earned first-team All-Pac-10 honors and third-team NSCAA All-Far West acclaim. He was selected as a pre-season All-American in 2007 by College Soccer News.

Late-Game Heroics -- Sophomore midfielder Chance Myers has been UCLA's go-to guy late in games. Twice already this season he has scored game-altering goals in the final three minutes of regulation. In the opener against Notre Dame, his goal with 39 seconds remaining sent the game into overtime, and at San Francisco on Sept. 20, he scored the game-winner with 2:11 left to play. Interestingly, his only goal last season came in the final seven minutes of play in the NCAA semifinal victory over Virginia.

Assist Man -- Sophomore midfielder Kyle Nakazawa continues to lead the Pac-10 in assists with four in seven games. He also ranks 23rd nationally in assists per game (0.57). Although not credited with an assist, Nakazawa also contributed to UCLA's goal at San Francisco with a free kick that eventually found Chance Myers for the game-winner. Nakazawa already has accumulated 12 assists in his short career.

Iron Men -- Three Bruins have played every minute of every game so far this year - defenders Tony Beltran and Greg Folk and goalkeeper Brian Perk have each totaled 654 minutes of play. This is nothing new for Folk, who led the team in minutes played a year ago with 2,216 out of 2,260.

Bruins A Big Draw -- The Bruins are a hot-ticket item on the road this year. UCLA road games this year (four away, one neutral) have averaged 4,590 fans. School attendance records were set at Indiana (7,423) and at Creighton (5,812), and the Bruins played in front of an over-capacity crowd of 3,143 at San Francisco. Overall this season, the Bruins are playing in front of crowds averaging 3,567.

Blogging With The Bruins -- Get a behind-the-scenes look at UCLA soccer through the eyes of Bruin players Kyle Nakazawa and Tony Beltran. Nakazawa, a sophomore midfielder, is contributing to the 100 Percent Soccer blog at the Daily Breeze website (insidesocal.com/soccer), while Beltran, a junior midfielder/defender is blogging for UCLABruins.com.

Alumni Day Set For Oct. 14 -- UCLA will host an Alumni Day on Sunday, Oct. 14 to honor 40 years of UCLA Soccer. An alumni game will take place at 10 am at the North Athletic Field, and members of the 1967 UCLA team (UCLA's first NCAA-sanctioned team) will be recognized at halftime of the UCLA-Cal game, which will take place at Drake Stadium at 2:30 pm.

Looking Ahead -- UCLA returns home for a mid-week contest against San Diego on Tuesday, Oct. 2. The game will take place at Frank W. Marshall Field at Drake Stadium at 7 pm. The Bruins begin Pac-10 Conference play on Saturday, Oct. 6 at San Diego State at 2 pm.

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