Men's Soccer Visits Oregon State, No. 11 Washington
Nov. 13, 2001
WHATS ON TAP: After losing a close game to rival Stanford last weekend, Cal travels to the Pacific Northwest and looks to steal two game from Oregon State (5-10, 1-5) and Washington (12-4, 3-3). Seniors Leo Krupnik, Austin Ripmaster and Chris Roner play their last regular season game vs. the Huskies.
THE WEEK IN REVIEW: The Bears failed to capatilize on a prime opportunity to defeat a top opponent and increase their chance of a postseason berth when it lost to No. 3 Stanford, 2-0, last Sunday. Cal started off the game outshooting the Cardinal 5-1 in the first half. Austin Ripmaster and Omar Gusmao failed to convert on prime scoring opportunities when Ripmaster took a shot right at Card keeper Andrew Terris, and Gusmao blasted a shot just wide of the goal with Terris clearly beat. Stanford didn't let its opportunities fly by as it capitalized on its chances. Darren Fernandez scored the eventual game-winning goal with an assist from Derek Shanahan, who also assisted on the second goal by Johanes Maliza. Stanford collected its 10th shutout of the season and the fifth consectuive time the Card have blanked Cal.
POSTSEASON COULD BECOME REALITY: Washington and Oregon State stand in their way, but the Bears still have a shot at the NCAA Tournament. Head coach Kevin Grimes believes that with a split or a sweep of the two schools, Cal has a good shot at making the postseason. If recent history is barometer of the Bears' chances, a sweep of the Beavers and the Huskies will set Cal up for its first tournament run since 1996. With two wins, the Bear are guaranteed a third place finish in the Pac-10. Last season, three teams from the conference were taken as at-large berths, and if Cal were to sneak into the third spot this season, after playing a tough schedule in 2001, the Bears have a clear shot for the NCAA Tournament. Another factor that gives Cal hope is the tournament expansion from 32 to 48 teams this year.
MUNOZ RETURNS AFTER ONE-GAME SUSPENSION:Freshman standout Mike Munoz returns to action this weekend after sitting out the Stanford match to serve a one-game suspension for a red card assessed to him vs. UCLA. The native of Los Alamitos has been a crucial component to the Bears' offense, scoring three goals and tallying seven assists, which ranks him second in the league.
RIPMASTER TOP 10 IN GOALS, POINTS: Senior Austin Ripmaster is sixth in the Pac-10 with 15 points. He had an assist two weeks ago on Alex Martinez's goal against Sacramento State to up his season total. He is also fourth in points with 16 thus far.
SCOUTING OREGON STATE: The Beavers have struggled this year compiling a record of 5-10. They are winless on the road at 0-6, but have a 5-2 record at Lorenz Field where Oregon State hosts Cal Friday. The Beavers are reeling from a four-game losing streak that includes a loss from each of the Pac-10 clubs. Aaron McHardy leads OSU with nine goals and two assists for 20 points. No other player on the squad has more than six points. In their last meeting, the Bears trounced the Beavers, 4-0, at Edwards Stadium as four different players scored. Dana Taylor is in his third year leading OSU and has a record of 12-23-1 in Corvallis. Cal leads the all-time series, 9-4-1.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON: The Bears stunned Washington in their last meeting at Cal. The Huskies spotted the Bears a 1-0 lead 18 minutes into the game as Austin Ripmaster netted the only score of the game. The trip to Seattle will be an ominous task for the Bears as the Huskies are undefeated (7-0) at Husky Soccer Field. After a tough, 3-2, overtime loss to UCLA, UW tries to bounce back and sweep two crucial conference games when Stanford and Cal visit the Huskies. Although UW fell out of contention for the Pac-10 title, wins this weekend will do a lot in solidifying a favorable first round matchup in the NCAA Tournament. Dean Wurzberger is in his 10th season coaching the Huskies and has an impressive record of 55-10-6. UW leads the all-time series 16-5-4, but Cal snapped a five game losing streak with its win three weeks ago.