Men's Soccer Hosts Portland as Stretch Run Begins
Nov. 8, 2001
No. 10 Huskies Host No. 15 Portland in Regional Rivalry Game, Travel to UCLA Sunday
Fri., Nov. 9: No. 15 Portland at No. 10 Washington, 7:15 p.m.
Sun., Nov. 11: No. 10 Washington at UCLA, 2 p.m.
All homes games played at Husky Soccer Field on the UW campus. The match with Portland is a doubleheader following the UW women's game versus Oregon at 5 p.m.
The No. 10 Washington men's soccer team (11-3-0, 2-2-0) returns home for a brief visit to host regional rival No. 15 Portland in the final non-conference game of the regular season Friday night. The match kicks off at 7:15 p.m., following the Husky women's game versus Oregon at 5 p.m. Following that, the Husky men are right back on the road for a game at UCLA at 2 p.m., Sun., Nov. 11. The Huskies, who got back on the winning track with a 1-0 victory at Oregon State last week, meet a Portland team that is undefeated in its last seven games (including a tie against Loyola Marymount). The Sunday road game pits them against a UCLA team that will celebrate senior day in its last home game and is fighting for the Pac-10 title. The Huskies tumbled to No. 14 in the current Soccer America poll while moving up two notches, from No. 12 to No. 10 in the NSCAA Coaches poll. Portland and UCLA are not ranked.
Dawgbite: Washington was the first team in the Pac-10 to win a conference road game this season when it defeated Oregon State, 1-0, last weekend. The Huskies' losses at California and Stanford two weeks ago were the first conference road losses ever for the Huskies.
A Glance at the Huskies
The Huskies completed a season sweep of Oregon State with a 1-0 victory over the Beavers in Corvallis and kept themselves in the hunt for the Pac-10 title. The team was coming off a weekend in which it suffered their first back-to-back losses since the opening two games of the 2000 season and had its eight-game win streak snapped with losses at California (1-0) and Stanford (4-1). Prior to that, the Huskies had not lost since since Sept. 8. It also marked the first Pac-10 road losses since league play began last year. The Huskies, who have been ranked in the top 10 since the first week of the season, had not lost since a 1-0 setback to Indiana in Portland back on Sept. 8. Statistically, senior co-captain Ben Somoza continues to lead the way with 12 points. Freshman Brett Wiesner Washington's lone goal of the weekend, his fourth of the season and first since the Seattle University game Sept. 20.
Washington leads the series with rival Portland, 20-11-2 ... Portland has won two of the last three meetings, including a 4-1 victory at home last year. UCLA leads the series with Washington, 8-7-1, but the Huskies are drawing closer with wins in the last five meetings, including the first this season ... the last UCLA win was an NCAA tournament game in 1997 when the Bruins won, 1-0, in Los Angeles ... the Huskies staged a pair of upsets last year, winning 3-2 in Los Angeles and 2-1 in Seattle.
The Pilots are undefeated in their last seven games and hold a 13-2 scoring advantage over opponents in that stretch. The team is led by Nate Jacqua, who has a eight goals and eight assists this season, along with Brandon Henley who has scored 10 goals so far. Portland won the Nike Husky Invitational earlier this season, winning the title on goal differential after posting a 9-2 victory over Air Force in the first round.
The Bruins are coming off two wins and two draws in their last four games. Twelve different players have scored goals this season, led by Tim Pierce's six.
Weekend Recap - Washington 1, at Oregon State 0
No. 4 Washington got back on the winning track and posted its fourth shutout of the season as it blanked Oregon State, 1-0, in Pac-10 action at Lorenz Field, Nov. 2. The lone goal, scored midway through the second half, generated controversy. After the teams had battled through a scoreless match for 70 minutes, Husky sophomore Jimmy Stark gained control of the ball roughly 12 yards in front of the OSU net after dribbling past a defender, and found the back of the net at 70:52. The goal was allowed despite an apparent hand-ball, which was signaled by the linesman but went uncalled by the referee. For Stark, who prepped at Kennedy High in Des Moines, it was just his second game played this season and his first career goal. The match also included a would-be score for OSU that was disallowed due to an offside call against the Beavers, as well as a Husky goal that was disallowed because of an OSU foul just prior to the shot. OSU's Nick Jensen appeared to have put the Beavers up 1-0 early in the second half when he took a long pass from Aaron McHardy and sent it in at the near post after separating from the defender. However, the linesman had called the player offside, and no goal was scored.
According to Coach Wurzberger
'The team was showing a little bit of wear and tear, so we took a few days off. We thought it would be a nice time, as much mentally as physically, to take a break. We had an early start to our season in August. All things considered, we thought this would be the best approach to our four final really big games. These remaining games will determine our goals of realizing a 16 seed, getting a first round bye and a home game. Every goal and objective we've set for ourselves is still attainable. If we win out in the Pac-10, we win the title. If we win the majority of these last four games, we'll be seeded. It's wonderful to have all that still in place, despite the bumps in the road along the way, and we haven't actually had that many bumps. 'Everything we've been working for is still in place and we have our destiny in our own hands, in terms of whether or not we can accomplish our goals. No. 1 is to be a 16 seed and second is to win a fourth consecutive conference championship. 'I think we'll see a rejuvenated team this weekend, players and staff. Everyone is ready to go and can't wait to get back at it. At this point in the season it's far more where their minds and heads are rather than physically how much work you've done on the field. I'm confident the break will benefit us. 'Portland is on a nice run right now. They're unbeaten in their last seven games. What's impressive is their last three wins have been on the road. They've shown an ability to get results on the road. We're hoping four in a row is one too many. On paper, it looks to be a big game. Both teams are headed to postseason, based on an overall record at this point. Traditionally, we've had close games. We took a loss at their place last time we played so we have the motivation of wanting to answer that. It should be an exciting night as a doubleheader with the women. It should be a good environment with all the northwest schools here.
Credit Somoza with the Assist
When senior co-captain Ben Somoza assisted Greg Foisie on the Huskies' gamewinner against UCLA two weeks ago, it gave him 20 career assists and moved him into a tie at No. 10 on Washington's all-time chart. He is tied with John Hamel who tallied 20 assists from 1985-88. Somoza, who prepped at Edmonds-Woodway HS, needs one more to move ninth, two more to eighth and three more to move into a three-way tie for sixth. He has tallied eight assists per season each of the last two years.
Championship Defense Under Way
Washington was off to a quick start defending its Pac-10 championship from last season. The Huskies won a pair of home games, over Oregon State and UCLA, to kickoff the 2001 campaign. Washington won the inaugural Pac-10 title last year, the first season of men's soccer within the conference. It was the third consecutive conference championship for the soccer team, which won the previous two Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) titles, in 1998 and '99. Last year the Huskies posted a record of 7-1 in Pac-10 action, including an undefeated record on the road. Current senior co-captains Bryn Ritchie and Ben Somoza earned first team all-conference honors while six other Huskies also earned recognition.
Six players in the Washington senior class are aiming for a perfect four-for-four in conference championships during their collegiate careers. With two MPSF titles and the first-ever Pac-10 championship to their credit, Greg Foisie, Zach Kingsley, Bryn Ritchie, Jake Sagare, Billy Sleeth and Ben Somoza have a chance to make it four in a row with a second Pac-10 title this year. The seventh senior, Trevor Frobose, transferred to UW from the Air Force Academy, and played his first season as a Husky last year. The six fourth-year seniors have also been to the NCAA tournament each of the three previous seasons. Washington is one of nine schools in the nation to have made six consecutive trips to the postseason tournament. Ironically, the Huskies have been knocked out of the tournament in the second round the last two season, each time at the hands of Indiana. The Hoosiers also handed the Huskies their only loss this season, at the adidas Invitational in Portland Sept. 8.
Scheduling News: Washington's games versus UC Santa Barbara (Sept. 14) and at Gonzaga (Sept. 16) were postponed following the events of Sept. 11. Both games have been cancelled.
By the Numbers: Washington has outscored its opponents, 26-15, so far and is outshooting the competition, 237-139 ... the Huskies have also taken 112 corner kicks to opponents' 46.
Huskies in the Polls
Date Soccer America NSCAA Soccer TimesPreseason 11 12 14Sept. 3 2 2 3Sept. 10 10 7 5Sept. 24 6 7 6Oct. 2 6 7 7Oct. 8 5 7 7Oct. 15 4 9 7Oct. 22 4 8 5Oct. 29 4 12 11Nov. 5 14 10
Huskies Against the Best: In its first 14 games this season, Washington has already faced five teams ranked in the top 25, including defending national champion and top-ranked Connecticut. The Huskies posted wins over No. 1 UConn (1-0), No. 16 William & Mary (3-2) while suffering a loss against No. 8 Indiana. They defeated No. 19 Air Force, 2-1, in the Husky Classic and most recently tallied a 3-1 win over No. 20 UCLA in Seattle. More recently, the Huskies were handed a 4-1 shellacking at No. 6 Stanford. Year in and year out, Washington's schedule is among the toughest in the nation. This season, the Huskies face six teams that competed in the 2000 NCAA Championships.