Huskies Tackle Portland In Home Opener Thursday

Sept. 15, 2009

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7 p.m. PT - Portland (2-1-1) at Washington (2-2-0)
Husky Soccer Field - Seattle, Wash.

6 p.m. PT - Washington at Denver (3-3-0)
Pioneer Field - Denver, Colo.

This Week: After playing their first four games of the season on the road, the Washington men's soccer team (2-2-0) finally hits the pitch at Husky Soccer Field this week for their home opener. The Huskies will host Northwest rival Portland (2-1-1) on Thursday, Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. before hitting the road again to face Denver (3-3-0) on Sunday at 6 p.m.

Last Week: UW rallied for a huge victory over UC-Davis, an NCAA Tournament team in each of the last two seasons, coming back for 2-1 win in double overtime on Sunday. The win by UW also snapped the Aggies' 12-match home unbeaten streak, which had stretched back to the 2007 season. UC-Davis took the early lead in the game and held on to it until 10 minutes remained in regulation, which is precisely when UW sophomore Brent Richards took over the match. The Huskies leading goal scorer from a year ago found that scoring touch again, taking a pass from Ryan Moore in the 80th minute and sending in the equalizer for his first goal of the season.

After the teams stayed tied at 1-1 through the first overtime, Richards created a scoring opportunity for himself with just three minutes remaining in the second OT, beating a pair of Aggie defenders and finding the back of the net for the golden goal and some redemption for the Dawgs after a pair of narrow losses the weekend before.

Live Online Coverage: Live audio video as well as live stats for the home match on Thursday will be available on Live video broadcasts of all Washington's home games can be accessed with a Dawg Channel All-Access pass, with men's and women's soccer games free of charge. Live stats will be available at no charge for Sunday's match at Denver via and video will also be available, but a Pioneer Vision subscription - available for a small fee - is necessary.

Follow the Huskies on Facebook: Become a fan of the Washington men's soccer team on Facebook by going to Fans can also follow the UW men's soccer team through the Huskies' all-sports Twitter page,

In the Rankings: Washington is not ranked in either of the NSCAA or Soccer America polls this week.

Scouting Portland: The Pilots come into the match with their Northwest rivals with a 2-1-1 record, upending Saint Louis in their own tournament for their first win of the season before defeating New Hampshire last week. The Pilots suffered their only loss thus far in the opener of their tournament against Virginia and have also drawn with Vermont. The Pilots, like the Huskies, are looking to rebound in 2009 after missing the postseason in `08, falling to a 8-10-2 record.

Collen Warner, who was second on the squad last season with 18 points, is the Pilots top returner and he leads the team again this year with four points (1 goal, 2 assists). Freshman Ricardo Carrillo has also chipped in three points while Bothell, Wash., native Ryan Luke also has three points on the young season. Junior goalkeeper Austin Guerrero is back after posting three shutouts last season.

Series vs. Portland: This week marks the 46th match between the squads in the annual rivalry, with the Huskies holding a 25-17-3 advantage over the Pilots. Portland has been in control of the series lately, however, winning 3-1 last season in Portland and capturing five of the last seven meetings between the teams. UW has won the last two matches between the teams in Seattle, however, both 1-0 victories in 2007, the latter of which was an NCAA First Round match.

The teams have faced each other at least once every season since 1977 and have often squared off in the postseason. UW is 12-7-2 all-time at home against Portland.

Scouting Denver: The Pioneers will enter the match with Washington with a 3-3-0 record, earning victories over Stanford, Dayton and Belmont. Freshman Alex Tarnoczi has made a big impact in his first season thus far, leading the team with seven points (three goals, one assist). A pair of sophomores have also stepped up for DU, including Matt Kirby, who has a goal and three assists, and Jarod Stigall, who has four points through four games.

The Pioneers advanced to the NCAA Tournament last season before falling in the first round to UC-Davis. Denver started the season 0-3 and was 2-5 before going unbeaten over a 10-game stretch (8-2) to clinch a spot in the tournament. DU returns six starters from that squad, including Sam Garza and Colin Audley, who combined for 23 points last season, ranking third and fourth on the squad with 12 and 11 points , respectively. Denver also returns goalkeeper Joe Willis, who posted four shutouts and a 1.18 GAA last season.

Series vs. Denver: The Huskies and Denver have met four previous time in their histories, with UW holding a 2-1-1 advantage in the series. Denver won the last meeting between the teams, a 4-1 victory in Seattle in 2007. UW has had some success in Denver, capturing both of their victories in the series on the road. The Huskies knocked off the Pioneers, 2-0, in Denver in 2005 and also won the first meeting between the two teams, 4-3, in 1999 in the Mile High city.

Frosh Sensation: The most heralded player in Dean Wurzberger's small but strong 2009 freshman class was Ryan Moore and the San Leandro, Calif., native has lived up to the hype so far. Moore has played in every game for the Huskies - starting twice - and scored UW's first goal of the season, which turned out to be the game-winner in a 1-0 season-opening victory over Seattle. Moore also had the game-winning assist in last week's win over UC-Davis, giving him three points on the season to rank second on the team behind Brent Richards.

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