No. 3-Seeded Cal Travels to No. 2-Seeded Florida State for NCAA 3rd Round
Nov. 14, 2005
BERKELEY, Calif. -
NO. 6 CAL ADVANCES TO 3RD ROUND NCAAS: Making its first appearance in the third round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1988, No. 3-seeded and sixth-ranked (NSCAA poll) California (16-3-2, 7-1-1 Pac-10, 2nd Pac-10) faces No. 2-seeded and 11th-ranked (NSCAA poll) Florida State (19-3, 8-2 ACC, T2nd ACC) Sunday, Nov. 20, at 10 a.m. PT (1 p.m. ET) at the Seminole Soccer Complex in Tallahassee, Fla. The Bears are 2-3-1 against ranked opponents in 2005. The winner of the Cal-FSU game faces the winner of the No. 1-seeded North Carolina-Pepperdine contest in the Elite 8 Nov. 25-27
SCHNUGG TO FACE FORMER TEAM: Cal junior forward Julia Schnugg will be returning to her old stomping grounds when the Bears battle Florida State this week. Schnugg played the 2003 and 2004 seasons for the Seminoles before transferring to Cal, which is close to her hometown of Alamo. In 2004, Schnugg earned second team All-ACC honors after leading FSU with 17 points (seven goals, three assists). In 2003, she helped Florida State to the NCAA College Cup semifinals, earning Soccer Buzz freshman All-America accolades after accumulating 22 points (six goals, 10 assists). This season, Schnugg has started 16 of the 20 games she has played in and has tallied six points (one goal, four assists). Julia's father, Peter Schnugg, played water polo at Cal from 1969-73 and was named the 1973 NCAA Player of the Year after leading the Bears to the national title. Her sister, Stephanie, is a freshman on the Cal water polo team and is member of the U.S. U18 national water polo team.
BEARS' NCAA HISTORY: Cal is making its 13th NCAA Tournament appearance in 2005 and its seventh in the last eight years. This year marks only the second time the Bears have earned a seed in the tournament (2000, 17-3-1, No. 8 under a different seeding format). Prior to the start of the tournament, the Bears were 5-3-1 against teams selected to this year's College Cup with wins coming against Stanford, USC, Southern Methodist, Dartmouth and Utah and a tie versus Arizona. The losses are to Santa Clara, BYU and UCLA. The Bears earned five consecutive playoff spots from 1998-02 but missed the 2003 NCAA Tournament after posting a 7-8-4 record. Cal has three NCAA semifinal appearances to its credit - 1984, '87 and '88. In the Bears' last NCAA appearance in 2004, they lost to Santa Clara, 2-1, on the road in the first round after jumping out to a 1-0 lead on a goal from Nadia Al-Lami. Chioma Igwe was credited with the assist on the corner kick.
CAL WINS AUSTIN SUBREGIONAL:
Bears Blank Rice to Tie School Shutout MarkCal opened the 2005 NCAA College Cup with a 2-0 win over Rice Nov. 11 at Myers Stadium. Senior forward Liz Eisenberg gave Cal a 1-0 lead in the 21st minute when she lofted a 25-yard shot just under the cross bar and out of the reach of Rice's goalkeeper Adriene Giese who was off her line. Sophomore forward/midfielder Laurie Gartrell added an insurance goal for the Bears in the 40th minute when she knocked in senior defender Tracy Hamm's shot, which Giese didn't cleanly handle. Cal outshot Rice, 26-12, including 16-2 in the first half. Senior goalkeeper Ashley Sulprizio recorded three saves to help Cal record its school-record tying 14th shutout (1988 Bears also had 14).
Cal Edges UTEP, 2-1, to Earn Third-Round Spot
Cal advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1988 with a 2-1 triumph over UTEP Nov. 13 at Myers Stadium. Senior forward Dania Cabello put Cal ahead, 1-0, in the seventh minute when she received a pass outside of the six-yard box from the left side from Liz Eisenberg and slotted the ball towards the left side of the goal. In the 72nd minute, freshman forward Valerie Barnes scored what later proved to be the game winner when she deposited junior forward Katie Ratican's pass into the back of the net from three-yards out. Cal held a 21-9 shot advantage, with all of the Miners shots coming from more than 18 yards.
CAL DEFENSE NO. 4 NATIONALLY: Cal ranks No. 4 in the nation in goals-against average (0.405) after allowing only nine goals (one PK, one own goal) in about 1,995 minutes. The Bears are seventh in the country for shutout percentage at 0.67 (14-of-21 games). The 14 shutouts tie the 1988 school record. Ashley Sulprizio ranks sixth nationally and first in the Pac-10 in GAA at 0.395 (eight goals, 20 games, 1,825 minutes). Sulprizio has recorded 10 of Cal's 14 shutouts (other four combined with junior Anna Key or redshirt freshman Nicole Jarbo) and has 20 for her career (T3rd all-time at Cal). She is chasing Noreen Paris' 1985 school record for GAA in a season (0.45) and Karen Cook's 1996 Cal record for shutouts in a season (11). The 1987 and 1989 Cal teams set the school record for fewest goals allowed (11). The 1988 squad also recorded the school records for GAA (0.52).
CAL SECOND IN PAC-10: Cal finished second in the Pac-10 this season with a school-record 7-1-1 mark. This is the Bears' highest finish since also placing second (7-2) in 2000. UCLA took top honors for the third straight season with a 7-0-2 record. USC placed third at 6-2-1, followed by Stanford at 4-3-2. Arizona, Arizona State and Washington State tied for fifth at 4-4-1. Oregon State took eighth at 3-5-1, Oregon was ninth at 1-8 and Washingon finished last at 0-9. Five Pac-10 teams earned NCAA Tournament bids, but Cal, UCLA and Arizona are the teams remaining.
BOYD NAMED PAC-10 COACH OF THE YEAR: In his ninth season at the helm at Cal, Kevin Boyd was named the 2005 Pac-10 Women's Soccer Coach of the Year. Boyd is the winningest coach in terms of victories (112-57-15, .649) in the program's 24-year history. He also has directed the Bears' program longer than any other coach.
HOOKER HEADLINES SEVEN BEARS WITH ALL-PAC-10 HONORS: Sophomore defender Courtney Hooker received first team All-Pac-10 honors after being named to the second team as a freshman. Senior forwad Liz Eisenberg, senior defender Tracy Hamm and sophomore midfielder Caroline Lea were tabbed to the second team for their first all-conference accolades. Junior midfielder Nadia Al-Lami garnered her third honorable mention pick, and senior forward Dania Cabello and sophomore midfielder Chioma Igwe (second time) also received honorable mention.
BEARS PURSUE SCHOOL-RECORD WIN TOTAL: At 16-3-2, Cal is off to its best start since the 2000 campaign when the Bears set a school record for wins with a 17-3-1 record. That year, Cal received a first-round NCAA Tournament bye before losing to Santa Clara, 2-0, in Berkeley in the second round. Three other times the Bears have notched 16 wins in a season (1986-88).
SULPRIZIO CLIMBING CAL CAREER CHARTS: In addition to challenging Cal's season records for shutouts and goals-against average, Ashley Sulprizio has her name etched in the Bears' career charts. After transferring to Cal after redshirting the 2001 season at Nebraska, Sulprizio has posted 20 shutouts and a 0.70 career goals-against average. She is tied for third in school history in shutouts, behind Maite Zabala (26.5, 1997-00, current Cal assistant coach) and Karen Cook (22, 1993-96) and is tied with U.S. Olympian Mary Harvey (20, 1983-86). Sulprizio, who hails from Gardnerville, Nev., stands third in Cal history for career goals-against average, behind Noreen Paris (0.46, 1985-88) and Linn Gassaway (0.64, 1987-88).
BEARS BOAST CONSISTENT BACKLINE: Cal's backline deserves a lot of the credit for the Bears' stellar defense in 2005. Senior Tracy Hamm, junior Alivia Mazura and sophomores Courtney Hooker and Kristine Relja started 20 of the team's 21 games this year. Relja didn't start the last game of the regular-season against Oregon State after securing a red card at Oregon. Freshman Nkechi Kanu earned her first start in Relja's place. Kanu and junior Emily Ward add depth to Cal's backline. The Bears are deep and talented everywhere on the field.
ENTIRE TEAM RETURNS FROM 2004: After losing nobody from last year's 11-6-3 team and adding some talented players, it's no wonder the Bears have performed well in 2005. This year's team features six seniors and two redshirt juniors. The seniors either start or play significant roles. That group includes goalkeeper Ashley Sulprizio, defender Tracy Hamm, midfielders Sierra Schlesinger and Lindsay Clute and forwards Liz Eisenberg and Dania Cabello.