Big Pac-10 Home Games Ahead For #4/2 UCLA
Oct. 14, 2009
This Week -- No. 4/2 UCLA (6-1-2, 1-0-2 in the Pac-10) will play its first Pac-10 home games this weekend, hosting current conference leader and No. 10/13 California (8-3-0, 2-1-0) on Friday, Oct. 16 at 7 pm and No. 18/19 Stanford (7-2-1, 1-1-1) on Sunday at 2:30 pm. Both games will be held at Drake Stadium.
Promotions -- Friday's game vs. Cal is UCLA Faculty/Staff Day. UCLA Faculty and Staff can receive four free admissions when they present their BruinCard or pay stub at the main entrance gate at Drake Stadium. It is also a GolDEN Game for members of The Den, UCLA's official student fan group. The Den will have a war/face painting station and food giveaways prior to the game for UCLA students. In addition, there will be a postgame autograph session with the UCLA team and selected Chivas USA players who will be in attendance for Chivas USA Day.
Live Coverage -- A free audio broadcast and Gametracker live stats will be available for both games at UCLABruins.com.
In The Rankings -- For the third straight week, UCLA remained No. 2 in the Soccer America poll and No. 4 in the NSCAA/adidas coaches poll. The Bruins also stay at No. 3 in the College Soccer News poll and move up one to No. 6 in Top Drawer Soccer's Tournament rankings but drop one to No. 5 in the Soccer Times poll.
Pac-10's Finest Battle It Out Friday -- UCLA and California have dominated the Pac-10 leaderboard for the past seven seasons, with one of the two teams winning the Pac-10 title in every year since 2002. UCLA has five titles during this time, while California broke the Bruins' four-year winning streak with a two-year title run from 2006-07. The Bruins are the defending Pac-10 champions, having won in 2008 with a 7-1-2 conference record.
Scouting The Golden Bears -- California split last weekend at home, losing, 2-0, to Washington before rebounding to defeat Oregon State, 4-1, behind a hat trick from senior forward Jeff Cosgriff. Junior forward Andrew Wiedeman leads the Pac-10 in goals (10), points (23) and goals per game (0.91) and ranks second in points per game (2.09). Wiedeman's marks in goals per game and points per game rank fifth and sixth, respectively, in the nation. Junior midfielder Hector Jimenez ranks second in the NCAA in assists per game (0.73).
The Series With California -- UCLA holds a 33-10-5 advantage over California and came out on top in the season series last year, going 1-0-1 against the Golden Bears with a 3-2 overtime win at Berkeley and a 0-0 tie at Los Angeles. Michael Stephens was the hero in the overtime win, scoring on a penalty kick in the 93rd minute. UCLA had led in the game, 2-0, on goals by David Estrada and Maxwell Griffin before Cal tied it up with two unanswered goals in the second half. The two goalkeepers were the stars in the scoreless tie at UCLA, with both Brian Perk and Cal's Stefan Frei making seven saves in 110 shutout minutes.
Scouting The Cardinal -- Stanford went 1-0-1 last weekend, defeating Oregon State, 1-0 and tying Washington, 1-1. Junior Bobby Warshaw scored both goals for the Cardinal and leads the team in scoring with five goals and 11 points. He also has three game-winning goals. Senior goalkeeper John Moore leads the Pac-10 in goals against average (0.77) and shutouts (5).
The Series With Stanford -- UCLA holds a 35-4-7 advantage over Stanford. The teams split last season, with each winning at home. The Bruins' 2-0 home win clinched the Pac-10 title for UCLA. The Bruins are unbeaten against Stanford at home since 1980, going 14-0-2 in those games.
Recapping Last Weekend -- The Bruins' unbeaten streak improved to seven games after a 2-2 tie at San Diego State. The two teams traded leads in the game, with UCLA striking first on a Kyle Nakazawa goal. The Aztecs tied it up 12 minutes later and then took a 2-1 advantage in the 81st minute. The Bruins were quick to respond, scoring the tying goal a minute and a half later on David Estrada's first score of the season.
Nakazawa Ties School Record For Consecutive Goals -- With a goal in his fifth consecutive game at San Diego State, senior midfielder Kyle Nakazawa tied the school record for consecutive games with a goal, held by Billy Thompson in 1988 and Joe-Max Moore in 1991. Nakazawa also has a seven-game streak in which he has scored a goal or assist and has contributed a goal or assist on UCLA's last seven goals scored. Nakazawa continues to lead UCLA in scoring with eight goals and 20 points.
Assist Leader Estrada Nets First Goal -- Senior David Estrada has been the Bruins' top set-up man, providing a team-leading six assists and ranking No. 1 in the nation in assists per game for two weeks. Estrada notched his first goal of the year at San Diego State last weekend, scoring the tying goal in the 83rd minute as the Bruins and Aztecs tied 2-2. Estrada leads all current Bruins in career goals with 20. He scored a school freshman record 12 in 2006.
Bruins Amongst Pac-10, National Leaders -- Kyle Nakazawa leads the Pac-10 in points per game (2.22) and ranks second in points (20), goals (8) and goals per game (0.89). Nationally, he ranks fifth in points per game and sixth in goals per game. David Estrada ranks second in the Pac-10 and eighth in the NCAA in assists per game (0.67). Goalkeeper Brian Rowe ranks 26th in save percentage (0.839). The Bruins rank 16th as a team in scoring offense (2.11).
Perk, Stephens Back With UCLA After U-20 World Cup -- Seniors Brian Perk and Michael Stephens returned to the team last week and started at San Diego State after missing five games while playing with the U.S. National Team at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt. The U.S. finished in 17th place in the tournament after going 1-2-0 with a 4-1 win over Cameroon and 3-0 losses to Germany and Korea Republic. Perk started in all three games. Stephens did not play.
Newcomers Contributing 47% Of Bruins' Goal Scoring -- Freshmen Chandler Hoffman, Evan Raynr and Ryan Hollingshead and newcomer Shawn Singh have scored 47% of the Bruins' goals this season. Hoffman and Hollingshead each have three goals to rank second on the squad, while Raynr has two and Singh one. The only other Bruins with goals are seniors Kyle Nakazawa (8 goals and 42% of the Bruins' goal scoring), David Estrada (1) and Sean Alvarado (1).
Rowe Shines In Spotlight -- With Brian Perk in Egypt with the U.S. National team for the FIFA U-20 World Cup, redshirt sophomore Brian Rowe went 4-0-1 in his absence, allowing just four goals and recording one shutout. Perk returned last weekend and started at San Diego State, but after getting kicked in the face in the 60th minute, he was taken out of the game and replaced once again by Rowe. With all of that prior experience under his belt, Rowe had a solid showing in goal, allowing one goal and making three saves in 51 minutes of play. In the seven games Rowe has played this season, the Bruins went 5-0-2. Rowe currently ranks 26th in the nation and second in the Pac-10 in save percentage (0.839).
Senior Leadership -- For the first time in Jorge Salcedo's tenure as head coach, the Bruins can truly call themselves a veteran team, with a substantially large senior class of eight, the largest senior class at UCLA since 2003. Leading the way are six returning senior starters - midfielder Michael Stephens, goalkeeper Brian Perk, midfielder Kyle Nakazawa, forward David Estrada, and defenders Danny Suits and Luis Serrano - as well as defender Sean Alvarado and midfielder Andrew Sinderhoff. Stephens is the reigning Pac-10 Player of the Year, while Perk, Estrada and Suits were all-conference selections. Nakazawa was a preseason All-America selection before injuries limited him to just 10 games last season. Seven seniors (Stephens, Perk, Nakazawa, Estrada, Suits, Serrano and Alvarado) have started for the Bruins in at least four games, and four (Nakazawa, Estrada, Suits and Alvarado) have started in all nine.
Fresh Faces -- A year after bringing in 12 new players, the Bruins welcome eight new faces to the squad in the form of seven freshmen and a junior walk-on. This year's freshman class was rated the No. 3 recruiting class in the nation by both Soccer America and College Soccer News. Leading the class is Top Drawer Soccer's No. 1 recruit in the nation, Amobi Okugo, who is also a member of the U.S. U-20 and U-18 National Teams. Also joining the Bruins are U.S. U-18 National Team player Michael Roman and ESPN/Rise All-Americans Dakota Collins, Chandler Hoffman and Evan Raynr. Three of the freshmen (Collins, Hoffman and Okugo) were singled out as '100 Freshmen To Keep An Eye On' by College Soccer News.
Eight of UCLA's 19 goals this season have come from freshmen - Hoffman and Hollingshead with three each, and Raynr with two. Okugo has started in all nine games, while Raynr, Hollingshead and Collins have played in all nine, with Hollingshead and Hoffman starting in five each.
Preseason Honors -- Senior midfielders Michael Stephens and Kyle Nakazawa were named to the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy Watch List. Soccer America named Stephens and Brian Perk preseason All-Americans (Stephens 1st team, Perk 2nd team), and College Soccer News picked Stephens as a first-team preseason All-American.