Southern California Trip Up Next For 23rd-Ranked Huskies
Oct. 16, 2008
Friday, Oct. 17, 2008
#23 Washington (7-3-1, 2-0-1 Pac-10) at UCLA (3-4-5, 1-1-1Pac-10) 7 p.m.
Drake Stadium Los Angeles, Calif.
Sunday, Oct. 19, 2008
#23 Washington (7-3-1, 2-0-1 Pac-10) at San Diego State (3-5-2, 1-0-2 Pac-10) 1 p.m.
SDSU Sports Deck San Diego, Calif.
Rankings according to Soccer America
Unbeaten in its last six matches and leading the Pac-10 standings, 23rd-ranked Washington men's soccer (7-3-1, 2-0-1 Pac-10) faces an important road test this weekend when it travels to Southern California to face UCLA (3-4-5, 1-1-1 Pac-10), Friday, Oct. 17 (7 p.m.) and San Diego State (3-5-2, 1-0-2 Pac-10), Sunday, Oct. 19 (12 p.m.). The Huskies began the week with an unblemished 2-0-1 league record and cracked the top-25 rankings for the first time this season with a No. 23 billing from Soccer America. UW kept its winning ways intact with a 2-1 road victory over Oregon State last Friday night in Corvallis. UCLA occupies the fourth spot in the Pac-10 standings but is coming off a big 3-2 overtime win over nationally-ranked California last weekend. San Diego State is the only other unbeaten team in league play so far, with one win and two draws. This weekend will mark the end of UW's three-game road swing as the Huskies will turn around and host these same two teams next week in Seattle.
Live scoring for both of Washington's games this weekend can be accessed at GoHuskies.com. UCLA will have a live audio broadcast available at UCLABruins.com.
In the Rankings:
Washington broke into a top-25 poll this week, earning a No. 23 ranking from Soccer America. The Huskies are receiving votes in the NSCAA/adidas and Soccer Times polls, and are billed 27th by CollegeSoccerNews.com.
Scouting The Huskies:
The Huskies continued their winning ways with a 2-1 victory over Oregon State last Friday night. The victory improved UW's unbeaten streak to six matches and gave them a two-point advantage in the Pac-10 standings. In fact, since opening the season 0-2, the Huskies are unbeaten in eight of their last nine games - the only loss in that span being a 3-1 setback to Portland on the road. Washington's six-game unbeaten streak is its longest since UW opened the 2006 season with eight-straight wins. Washington used second-half goals from freshman forward Brent Richards and junior midfielder Jo Jo Katz to secure a victory over Oregon State in Corvallis. The Beavers tallied a goal as late as the 85th minute to cut the Husky lead to one goal, but ran out of time for the equalizer. UW dominated in the stats columns, finishing with an 18-9 advantage on shots and a 12-5 advantage on corner kicks. Richards' goal was his fifth of the season, moving him into a tie for the team scoring lead with senior midfielder Raphael Cox. Richards and fellow freshman Dylan Tucker-Gangnes (two goals, two assists) have solidified a young Husky front line, also getting help from Cox, Katz (three goals), senior co-captain George John (two goals, one assist) and freshman Casey McCool (one goal, on assist) in the midfield. Cox, who assisted Richards' goal in Corvallis, is on an offensive tear recording four goals and three assists in the last six games. While the offense has been producing, the defense has held strong as well. Junior Casey Cunningham and sophomore Taylor Mueller anchor the backline, along with junior Taylor Hoss and redshirt-freshman Jamie Finch who has filled in nicely at left back for sophomore Brad Keller who has missed the last few games with a knee injury. Goalkeepers Stephen Fung and Rylan Hawkins have split time tending the net this season. Fung has played all three Pac-10 contests, earning the shutout against Stanford and grabbing five saves against Cal. Fung has a 1.49 goals against average and has 13 saves this season, while Hawkins has a 0.84 goals against average to go along with 10 saves.
The Huskies began the week ranked 22nd in the nation and first in the Pac-10 in scoring offense with 2.0 goals per game. Senior midfielder Raphael Cox ranks 48th in the nation in points per game (1.40) and is 77th in goals per game (0.5). In the Pac-10, Cox leads in points per game (1.40) and is tied for second in goals per game (0.50). Freshman forward Brent Richards leads the league in shots per game (4.0), is fifth in points per game (1.0) and sixth in goals per game (0.45).
UCLA is coming off a 3-2 overtime victory over then-No. 6 Cal, giving the Bruins their first road victory of the season. Junior midfielder Michael Stephens scored the gamewinner on a penalty for which he was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week for the second time this season. UCLA's other conference results included a 2-1 loss at Stanford and a 3-3 draw with San Diego State. Stephens is tied for the team lead in goals with senior forward Maxwell Griffin. Senior midfielder Jason Leopoldo leads with four assists, while Brian Perk has played all but two games in goal, recording a 1.58 goals against average and 38 saves.
All-Time Series Vs. UCLA:
Washington trails the all-time series with UCLA, 11-17-1. These teams have split their two meetings the last two seasons. Last year, UW won 1-0 in Westwood after the Bruins recorded a 3-2 victory on UW's home pitch in Seattle. It was the opposite in 2006 as both teams recorded wins at home. The Huskies are 5-9-1 overall when playing the Bruins in Los Angeles.
Scouting San Diego State:
The Aztecs will host Oregon State on Friday before the Huskies come to town on Sunday. SDSU is two points behind UW in the Pac-10 standings and is also unbeaten with a 1-0-2 conference tally. San Diego State played California to a 1-1 double overtime draw on the road and defeated Stanford, 1-0, last weekend. The Aztecs opened conference play with a 3-3 double overtime draw with UCLA. Evan Toft leads the squad with three goals and four assists for 10 points. Four different goalkeepers have manned the net, with Brad Burns getting the last two starts during which he has allowed four goals.
All-Time Series Vs. San Diego State:
Washington has a slight edge in the all-time series with San Diego State, 4-3-4. Since the Aztecs joined the Pac-10 in 2005, UW is 1-1-4 against them - the lone loss coming in San Diego in 2006. Last year, these squads played to a 1-1 double overtime draw in San Diego, while UW emerged victorious 3-1 in Seattle. UW is 1-1-2 against the Aztecs in San Diego.