UCLA Men's Soccer Team Makes 19th Consecutive NCAA Appearance
Nov. 20, 2001
This Week - Head coach Todd Saldana's 20th-ranked UCLA men's soccer team (10-6-4, 5-2-1 in the Pac-10) begin post-season play with an NCAA first round game against Loyola Marymount (9-6-2) at the University of San Diego. The game will take place on Friday, Nov. 23 at 7:00 pm at San Diego's Torero Stadium. The winner of Friday's game will face host San Diego (12-3-1) in the second round on Sunday, Nov. 25 at 1:00 pm.
Internet Broadcast - Loyola Marymount will broadcast Friday's game live on the internet at www.LMULions.com.
Bruins Reach Tournament For 19th Straight Year - UCLA's selection to the NCAA Tournament is the 19th consecutive and 29th overall for the Bruins. UCLA has won national championships in 1985, 1990 and 1997. The Bruins' all-time NCAA record is 45-26.
UCLA vs. Tournament Field - The Bruins hold a 5-4-3 record versus the tournament field. UCLA's five victories came against third-seeded Stanford, Santa Clara, California (twice) and Washington. The Bruins also have ties against Stanford, second-seeded Virginia and South Carolina.
A Look At The Lions - Loyola Marymount enters the NCAA Tournament with a record of 9-6-2 and is making its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance. The Lions won seven straight from Sept. 9-Oct. 5 and were ranked as high as 16th in the Soccer America polls, but have gone 2-3-2 since. Arturo Torres leads the team in scoring with 11 goals and 25 points. Andres Murriagui is also in double-digit scoring with 17 points on six goals and five assists. Goalkeeper Dan Sheridan holds a 1.03 goals against average with six shutouts.
Last Time Against LMU - The Lions upset the Bruins, 1-0, in the last meeting, held Sept. 30 at UCLA. Arturo Torres scored the game's only goal in the 29th minute. The Bruins played the final 21 minutes of the game a man down after Cliff McKinley was handed his second yellow card of the match.
The Series With LMU - UCLA leads the overall series with LMU, 18-1-0. Friday's game promises to be a battle - the last three games in the series have been decided by one goal, with two of the three going to overtime.
Saldana, Krumpe To Face Former Teams - UCLA head coach Todd Saldaï¿½a and LMU head coach Paul Krumpe will be facing their former teams when the Bruins and Lions meet on Friday. Saldaï¿½a was the head coach at Loyola Marymount in 1997 before moving on to coach the UCLA women in 1998 and the UCLA men since 1999. Krumpe was an assistant coach at UCLA from 1995-97 and helped the Bruins win the 1997 NCAA title. Krumpe also played at UCLA from 1982-85 and co-captained the Bruins to the 1985 NCAA championship. Krumpe's assistant at LMU, Brian Irvin, also played at UCLA, from 1993-96.
A Look At The Toreros - San Diego enters the tournament with a 12-3-1 record and closed the season with a five-game winning streak. The Toreros, ranked No. 13 by the NSCAA, have four players in double-figure scoring - Ryan Coiner (12 goals, 26 points), Eric Wunderle (12 points), Sy Reeves (11 points) and Tyler Conley (11 points). Goalkeeper Justin Neerhof holds a 0.73 GAA with seven shutouts.
Last Time Against USD - Despite outshooting San Diego 27-13, the Bruins came up on the short end of the stick against the Toreros, losing 3-0. Eric Wunderle and Alex Romagnolo each had a goal and an assist for San Diego. Justin Neerhof had six saves for USD, while UCLA keeper Zach Wells made four saves.
The Series With USD - UCLA leads the overall series with San Diego, 13-4-2 and has faced the Toreros five times in the NCAA Tournament. UCLA won a second-round matchup in 1990, 2-1 in overtime, and a first-round meeting in 1999, 4-1. San Diego's victories have come in the second round in 1992 (2-1) and in the first rounds in 1993 (4-2 in overtime) and 2000 (1-0 in overtime).
Bruins Seeking Triple Revenge - Not only will UCLA be looking to avenge a 1-0 loss to LMU earlier this year, but should the Bruins accomplish that Friday, they will seek to avenge a pair of recent losses at Torero Stadium. The first loss was a 1-0 overtime defeat in the first round of the 2000 NCAA Tournament. The most recent was a 3-0 loss last month.
Quoting the Coach - Comments from head coach Todd Saldana: 'It feels like we have a second chance. We got in the tournament, and now we get a chance to play Loyola Marymount and possibly San Diego, two teams who had beaten us this season. When we played them earlier, it was a period when we were struggling, but now we're at a point where we're playing our best soccer. Our confidence is high, and the team is not afraid of anybody at this point.'
Pac-10 Shows Its Strength - The Pacific-10 Conference will be represented by four of its five (80%) member teams in the NCAA Tournament - third-seeded and league champion Stanford, UCLA, Washington and California. No other conference in the nation had a higher percentage of teams advancing.
UCLA In the Rankings - UCLA stayed at No. 20 in the Soccer America and CollegeSoccer.com media polls. During their week off, however, the Bruins dropped out of the Top 25 in the NSCAA poll.
UCLA Closes Season With Six-Game Unbeaten Streak - The Bruins closed the regular season with an impressive six-game unbeaten streak, going 4-0-2 while facing three Top 20 teams. UCLA won its last three games, downing Cal 1-0 in overtime on the road and defeating at home Oregon State, 1-0, and 14th-ranked Washington, 3-2 in overtime. During the six-game unbeaten streak, UCLA allowed just three goals, outscoring its opponents, 10-3.
Bruins Tune Up For NCAAs With Win Over Alumni - UCLA used last week's bye-week to play an exhibition game against a group of alumni and won 2-1 behind goals from Tim Pierce and Chadd Davis. Current Loyola Marymount assistant coach Brian Irvin scored the lone goal for the alums. Among the alumni playing were MLS players Pete Vagenas, Nick Rimando, Steve Shak and Jimmy Conrad and former MLS players Jorge Salcedo and Tayt Ianni.
Wells Approaches Saves Record - Sophomore goalkeeper Zach Wells is approaching the UCLA record for goalkeeping saves in a season (97, held by Brad Friedel in 1990). With 86 saves this year, Wells needs 11 more saves to tie Brad Friedel's mark of 97, set in 1990. Wells, who had a consecutive shutout streak snapped at 541 minutes in his last game, is two saves away from fifth-place Tim Harris (1981), three away from third-place Anton Nistl (1989) and David Vanole (1985) and four away from second-place Vanole (1984).
Eleven Bruins Earn All-Conference Acclaim - A league-high 11 UCLA players earned All-Pac-10 honors, including three first-team selections. Junior midfielder Ryan Futagaki, sophomore midfielder Adolfo Gregorio and junior forward Tim Pierce were selected to the first team for the first time in their careers. Second-team selections were sophomore defenders Nelson Akwari and Alex Yi and sophomore goalkeeper Zach Wells. Five others earned honorable mention nods - sophomore midfielder Dru Hoshimiya, senior midfielder Brandon Kay, sophomore forwards Cliff McKinley and Matt Taylor and junior defender Scot Thompson.
UCLA In The Conference - The Bruins rank amongst the Pac-10 leaders in several team and individual categories. As a team, UCLA ranks first in shots (316) and second in least goals allowed per game (0.95), saves (89), shutouts (8) and corner kicks (118). Individually, Tim Pierce leads the conference in game-winning goals (3, tied) and shots (58) and ranks third in goals scored (7), fifth in points per game (0.37), sixth in points (16) and seventh in points per game (0.84). Matt Taylor is tied for seventh in goals (5), sixth in shots (41) and 10th in points (12). Goalkeeper Zach Wells ranks second in the conference in saves (86), saves per game (4.30) and shutouts (8) and second amongst starters in goals against average (0.84).
Hermann, M.A.C. Award Watch - Defender Alex Yi is a finalist for the Hermann Trophy, college soccer's longest-standing player of the year award, as well as for the Missouri Athletic Club Player of the Year Award. The U.S. Under-20 National Team member was the 2000 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and a second-team All-Pac-10 selection the past two seasons. He was one of just three players to start all 19 of UCLA's games in 2000. This year, Yi has started 19 games, contributing to eight shutouts, including four in the Bruins' last five games.
Bruins Healthy Heading Into NCAAs - UCLA is injury-free for the tournament and have been fortunate to not have any major injuries this season. That was not the case a year ago, when starters Ryan Futagaki, Adolfo Gregorio and Scot Thompson missed the post-season due to injuries.
UCLA Shows Stamina In Extra Time - Should any of their playoff games go to extra periods, UCLA will definitely have the edge, having already played five double-overtime and seven overall overtime games this season. UCLA's record in overtime is 2-1-4. In all, UCLA has played 199 minutes worth of overtime and have nearly 500 more minutes than San Diego and nearly 375 minutes more than LMU.