Men's Soccer Opens Pac-10 Play Against Fresno State
Oct. 7, 2002
This Week - The UCLA men's soccer team (5-1-2, ranked sixth by Soccer America and 16th by the NSCAA) will host Fresno State (3-4-3) on Sunday, Oct. 13 in the Pac-10 season opener for both teams. The game will take place at Frank W. Marshall Field at Drake Stadium at 12:00 pm. It is the first in a doubleheader with the fifth-ranked UCLA women's soccer team, which will host second-ranked Stanford at approximately 2:00 pm.
Scouting The Opponent - Fresno State enters the contest with a 3-4-3 record and is winless on the road in 2002, posting a 0-2-2 mark away from home. The Bulldogs have struggled offensively, scoring at an average of 1.0 goals per game. Kupono Low leads the team in scoring with five points on two goals and one assist. Goalkeeper Jeremy Proud has posted two shutouts and holds a goals against average of 1.11.
The Series - UCLA leads the all-time series against Fresno State, 13-8-3 and has won the last three in a row. In the last contest, UCLA defeated Fresno State, 2-1 at home in the first round of the 1998 NCAA playoffs.
Gregorio Brothers Reunite - UCLA junior midfielder Adolfo Gregorio (Hilmar, CA/Hilmar HS) will face his younger brother, Andrew Gregorio, a freshman forward for Fresno State, for the first time in college. Andrew is tied for the Bulldog team lead in goals scored with two, while Adolfo is tied for third on the Bruin team in goals scored (three) and points (seven).
Bruins Earn Two Ties At Rutgers Tournament - Facing two Top 15 teams in No. 13 Rutgers and No. 1 St. John's, the Bruins came away with two ties on the weekend at the Rutgers Classic. On Friday, Tim Pierce recorded his team-leading sixth goal of the season as the Bruins tied host Rutgers, 1-1. On Sunday, UCLA withstood a 17-shot barrage and a man disadvantage to hold top-ranked St. John's scoreless in the game for a 0-0 result. The Bruins played a man down for 48 minutes after Aaron Lopez was red-carded in the 62nd minute. Goalkeeper Zach Wells, who stopped a season-high eight shots against Rutgers, made four saves against St. John's to become the first goalie to shut out the Red Storm in 2002. The tie brings UCLA's record against No. 1 teams to 3-1-1 since 1998.
Gregorio, Lawson Honored - Midfielder Adolfo Gregorio and defender Tony Lawson were selected to the Rutgers Philips/adidas Soccer Classic All-Tournament Team. Gregorio was an offensive threat throughout the entire tournament, making several quality shots that were only stopped by great goalkeeper saves. Lawson led a Bruin defense that held No. 1 St. John's scoreless despite playing a man down for 52 minutes.
Dynamic Duo - Tim Pierce and Matt Taylor have turned into a formidable one-two punch for the Bruins. After just eight games, the duo are in double-figures in points scored, with Pierce totaling 16 and Taylor adding in 11. The two have also hooked up frequently on each other's goals - Taylor has assisted Pierce on three of Pierce's last five goals, and Pierce assisted Taylor on one of Taylor's last two scores. The dynamic duo are far from UCLA's only scoring threats, however. Midfielders Adolfo Gregorio and Ryan Futagaki have each totaled three goals, while Jimmy Frazelle has two.
Tough Schedule - UCLA has faced four Top 20 teams in its last five games, going 1-1-2 in those contests. The Bruins' matchup against Fresno State is only their second game against an unranked opponent in over a month.
In The Rankings - The Bruins remained at No. 6 in the Soccer America poll and moved up one spot to No. 16 in the NSCAA Coaches' Poll despite a 7-0 victory last week. College Soccer News and SoccerTimes.com placed the Bruins at No. 8 and 10, respectively.
California Dreaming - The 2002 UCLA men's soccer team is comprised of all California players for just the second time in program history. The only other time that has happened was in 1985, the year of the Bruins' first NCAA Championship. Twenty-five of UCLA's 28 players hail from Southern California, including 12 from Orange County.