Cal Welcomes San Jose State for Final Home Game
Nov. 4, 2003
Berkeley, Calif. -
THIS WEEK:Sunday, Nov. 9 San Jose State Edwards StadiumBerkeley, CA 2:00 p.m.
WHAT'S ON TAP: California (8-8-2, 4-4-1 Pac-10) with two games to play, needs two wins to put itself in position for a third consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance. The Bears have been up and down all year, but will need to put together their first three match winning streak if they want to be playing deep into November. In this week's contest, Cal welcomes non-conference foe San Jose State to Berkeley on Sunday November 9 at 2 p.m. This Spartans squad (10-4-2, 5-1-0 WAC) will be no pushover. They hold wins over UC Irvine, 2-0, and Santa Clara, 2-1, who Cal lost to and tied with, respectively. Cal will say goodbye to seniors Ryan Swiontek, Brian Walker, Matt Lawler, and David Scheid for their last game at Edwards Stadium.
SCOUTING THE SPARTANS: The San Jose State Spartans bring a team that has won four out of their last five to Edwards Stadium. The team is paced by forward Randy Poggio. Poggio has 12 goals to go with three assists, giving him 27 points on the season in 15 games. He is by far the biggest shooting threat on the Spartans, leading the team in shots (54) and shots on goal (31). Poggio is complemented up front by Johnny Gonzalez. Gonzalez has eight goals and two assists on the season, giving him 18 points in 16 contests. He also leads the Spartans in game winning goals with four. The Spartans lead the overall series over the Bears, 15-14-2. But Cal has escaped the last two meetings with victories, 2-1 in 2002 and 3-2 in 2001. The two Bay Area schools have met every year since 1975 except for 1999.
2003 PAC-10 MEN'S SOCCER STANDINGS:(As of Nov. 4, 2003) Conf. OverallUCLA 7-0-0 15-1-0Oregon State 6-1-0 12-4-0Washington 3-3-1 10-3-2California 4-4-1 8-8-2Fresno State 2-5-0 5-10-0Stanford 0-9-0 2-14-2
BEARS NORTHERN TRIP LEAVES TEAM WITH HOPE: Cal visited Oregon State and Washington last weekend, two teams ahead of the Bears in the standings and in position to go to the NCAA tournament. The trip started off poorly in Corvallis. Three quick goals in the first 28 minutes and the game was essentially over. Cal got one back with Pieter Berger's second goal of the season in the 52nd minute, but it was too little, too late. The Bears could either put up or shut up, because losing to Washington would probably end their post season aspirations. They put up. Cal scrapped out a gut wrenching 1-0 win in Seattle. Tyson Wahl played hero when he took a Nick Hatzke corner and served a ball into the net from the edge of the 18-yard box. But the unsung hero of the day was the Cal defensive unit. Noah Merl, Kyle Navarro, Troy Roberts, and Steve Purdy teamed to hold the Huskies to zero shots on goal. Goalkeeper Mike Oseguera collected the easiest shutout he will ever get credit for in his college career.
ON A TEAM LED BY JUNIORS, SOPHOMORES, FRESHMEN BEGIN TO MAKE AN IMPACT: Cal has guaranteed itself a sound future by integrating many of its younger players into the lineup and bringing them in for a spark as substitutes. Sophomore's Wahl and Hatzke have been a consistent presence in midfield for the Bears. Wahl plays a defensive role in aiding the back four, while Hatzke is one of the key distributors of the ball to the forwards. Sophomores Berger and freshman Andrew Jacobson have been used off the bench as big attackers, capable of winning balls up front. Sophomores Garrett Terracciano, and freshman Eric Ebert have added depth and often a spark to the Golden Bear midfield. Purdy has been the most consistent freshman Bears starter, forming a formidable back line with juniors Merl, Navarro and Roberts. Playing on the outside he also is capable of making attacking runs up the field. Cal is led by a core of juniors, but these sophomores and freshmen are beginning to make their presence felt - a good sign that the program is healthy.
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