California Announces 2009 Schedule
June 23, 2009
BERKELEY - The California women's soccer team will kickoff its 2009 season with an exhibition on Aug. 15 before delving into its 10-game nonconference and Pac-10 Conference slates, Cal head coach Neil McGuire announced recently. Of the Golden Bears' 20 opponents, eight went to the 2008 NCAA Tournament.
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The Golden Bears host Pacific in a preseason match before opening the regular season Aug. 21 at home against Nevada. From there, Cal will travel to Portland, which reached the quarterfinals of last year's NCAA Tournament after winning the West Coast Conference at a 7-0 clip.
The Bears will put on the Annual Cal Invitational, which is in its 15th year, on Sept. 4 and 6, welcoming Saint Mary's, Texas A&M and Texas. The Aggies advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals while the Longhorns made it to the second round.
The Bears will play in the Saint Mary's Invitational for the fifth consecutive season. Cal will play Portland State on Sept. 11, in Berkeley as part of the tournament and then taking on SMU on Sept. 13 in Moraga, Calif. The Bears won two games at last season's invite - kicking off Cal State Northridge, 1-0, and Boise State, 2-1 - and had four players named to the All-Tournament Team, which was the highest number of all four teams. Katherine Daiss, Lisa Kevorkian, Katie Oakes and Camellia Senemar were all named to the team.
The Bears then travel the short distance to Moraga the following weekend for a nonconference game Sept. 18 against Saint Mary's. Cal will host Cal Poly on Sept. 25 and Sacramento State on Oct. 2 in its final nonconference games at home.
The Bears will travel to the South Bay to take on Santa Clara on Oct. 4 in the nonconference schedule finale. Cal has a four-game winning streak against the Broncos, with a 1-0 win in 2008 as well as a 3-0 victory in the first round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament.
'This schedule will provide us with many tests in nonconference before moving into Pac-10 play,' McGuire said. 'Portland, Texas, Texas A&M and Santa Clara are all perennial top-10 programs and will let us see where are as a team.'
Cal begins its Pac-10 Conference slate Oct. 9 with the Oregon schools before hosting UCLA (Oct. 16) and USC (Oct. 18) at Edwards Stadium. Cal will make the trek to the Pacific Northwest to play Washington on Oct. 23 and Washington State on Oct. 25. The Bears' final homestand will be Oct. 30 and Nov. 1 against Arizona and Arizona State, respectively. Cal will finish the 2009 regular-season campaign at rival STanford on Nov. 6.
Six of the 10 Pac-10 teams advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 1008, with UCLA finishing as the national runner-up.
'The Pac-10 will again be very difficult this year,' McGuire said. 'From what I have seen from everyone's recruiting, teams have all re-loaded and games will be very tight. It should be a lot of fun.'
The 2008 squad recorded the program's 23rd winning season, finishing 10-9-1 overall and going 3-5-1 in Pac-10 play to finish sixth in the competitive league. The 2008 campaign also saw Cal earn an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament for its fifth consecutive and 16th overall trip to the postseason. The Bears fell, 2-1, to No. 7 Florida in Gainesville, Fla., in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Sophomore forward Alex Morgan, who scored the eventual game-winner to lead the U.S. to a gold medal in the FIFA Under-20 Women's World Cup in December, led the Cal in points (23) and goals (nine). The team had nine players named to the Pac-10's All-Academic team.