UCLA Travels to Duke for NCAA Second Round Game
NCAA Tournament Second Round
No. 24 UCLA (11-6-1) at No. 14 Duke (13-4-1)
Date/Time: Sunday, Nov. 21 - 10:00 a.m. (PT)
Location: Durham, N.C. (Koskinen Stadium)
Stream: ACC Network Extra
UCLA Travels Cross-Country for Second Round Matchup at No. 7 Duke
After capturing an overtime win in its NCAA Tournament-opener against UC Santa Barbara, the UCLA men's soccer team travels cross-country to face No. 7 seed Duke in the second round of the tourney on Sunday, Nov. 21 starting at 10:00 a.m. PT. The contest will be streamed live on ACC Network Extra. Fans can also follow along with live stats on goduke.com and live updates via the team Twitter account, @UCLAMSoccer.
- UCLA is 11-6-1 overall this season, including an 8-4-1 mark over its last 13 games
- The Bruins are on a three-game winning streak for the third time this year
- For the season, UCLA is outscoring its opponents 32-23 and outshooting them 198-174
- 14 of UCLA's 18 games this season have been decided by one goal or fewer, including 10 of the last 12
- The Bruins are 9-2-1 when scoring first, and 2-4-0 when the opponent scores first
- UCLA is 3-0-0 in overtime games
- The Bruins' 11 wins are their most in a single season since 2015
UCLA Advances to Second Round After Taking Down UCSB
Senior forward Kevin Diaz poked in a loose ball inside the six-yard box in the 103rd minute for an overtime golden goal as the No. 24-ranked UCLA men's soccer team defeated UC Santa Barbara, 2-1, on Thursday night at Wallis Annenberg Stadium in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The game-winner clinched the comeback win for the Bruins, who fell behind 1-0 in the second half but received an 86th minute equalizer from Jose Contell to send the game to overtime. Contell led the Bruins with three points. UCLA outshot UCSB 18-10 overall, and 14-3 after the Gauchos scored the opening goal of the game in the 54th minute.
- Contell (86'): A long throw-in from Aaron Edwards deep along the right touchline goes to Pietro Grassi inside the 18. He heads the ball back towards the top of the box, and Contell first-times a left-footed shot from inside the penalty arc. Shot takes a small deflection and goes inside the left post
- Diaz (103'): Defender Ben Reveno played a long ball from the defensive half of the field to deep on the right wing for Contell. He approached the goal line and then sent a centering pass back across the box. His cross got past one Gaucho defender, but a second got a slight touch on it which made the ball slow down into Diaz's path. Diaz pounced on the ball at the edge of the six and poked it in with his left foot, with the ball crossing the line just before the UCSB keeper was able to swipe it out.
- The golden goal was UCLA's first in a postseason game since Chase Gasper against Providence on Dec. 12, 2014 (NCAA Semifinals)
Bruins in the NCAA Postseason
- UCLA earned an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament after going 10-6-1 overall and finishing third in the Pac-12
- This is UCLA's 46th appearance in the NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Tournament, and first since 2018
- UCLA is tied with Indiana for the second-most NCAA Tournament appearances of any school (St. Louis: 49)
- The Bruins qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 34 consecutive seasons from from 1983-2016
- UCLA is 15-6 all-time in first round games after beating UCSB, including a 5-1 mark in its last six first round matchups
- UCLA is 25-13 in NCAA second round games, and is playing a second round game for the first time since 2016
- The Bruins have won four national championships in program history: 1985, 1990, 1997, 2002
The Pac Has Punch
The Pac-12 finished the 2021 regular season with the top conference RPI in the country. UCLA went 5-4-1 in league play and finished third in the league table; it's the first time since 2015 that the Bruins finished above .500 in Pac-12 play or placed top-three in the conference standings.
Diaz On a Roll
Senior F Kevin Diaz is on another hot streak, recording points in three straight and four of the last five games. It's the second time he's gone on a tear this season, as had a five-game point streak from Sept. 16 to Oct. 3 (4-2-10). He's the first Bruin with a five-game point streak since Milan Iloski opened the 2019 campaign with 16 points in five games (he led the NCAA in goals per game that year at 1.06). Diaz had never scored a goal in back-to-back games before his three-game streak from Sept. 25 to Oct. 3, and his previous career-long point streak was two games. Diaz has potted the game-winner in two of the last three games, powering the Bruins to arguably their two biggest victories of the entire campaign (against No. 1 Oregon State and in the NCAA first round vs. UCSB).
Entering the weekend, UCLA has a four-way tie for the team lead in points as Tucker Lepley, Kevin Diaz, Tommy Silva, and Jose Contell all have 16 points. The Bruins are the only team in the Pac-12 with four separate 16-point players. UCLA hasn't had multiple players with 16 points since the 2016 season, and hasn't had a quartet of 16-point players since 2015.
Taking Down the Top
UCLA's win over No. 1 Oregon State on Nov. 7 represented the the second time under third-year head coach Ryan Jorden that UCLA defeated a top-ranked opponent. Previously, UCLA defeated then-No. 1 and defending champion Maryland by a score of 3-2 at Wallis Annenberg Stadium on Sept. 6, 2019 (UCLA's first-ever home game coached by Jorden). Prior to that, UCLA had most recently beaten No. 1 Akron by a score of 6-1 on Sept. 5, 2016.
Redshirt freshman forward Jose Contell has picked a nice time to record his first-career three-game points streak, as he's gotten on the scoresheet for each game during UCLA's current winning streak. Contell has notched a career-high three points (1-1-3) in back-to-back games.
Feeling Like A 10
The Bruins' win over SDSU in the regular-season finale was the team's 10th of the year. It marks the 62nd time in program history, and first since 2018, that UCLA reached double-digit wins. Conversely, UCLA can finish with no more than seven losses this year; UCLA has just two double-digit-loss seasons on its ledger since 1937.
Clinical From the Spot
At 2-for-2, UCLA's Yoni Sorokin is the only player in the Pac-12 Conference with multiple PK makes and a 100% conversion rate. Only 19 players nationwide have gone 3-for-3 or better in 2021.
Fair or Foul
Thanks in part to a large advantage in possession numbers, UCLA is committing just 9.39 fouls per game to this point of the season. That figure ranks 11th in the country and is by far the lowest in the Pac-12, with no other league school sitting in the top-35 nationally. Only 23 schools nationwide are averaging single-digit fouls.
The Series Against Duke
UCLA holds the edge in the all-time series against Duke at 4-3-0, but the two teams have matched up just twice since 2000. UCLA is 2-1-0 all-time against Duke in Durham, with the Bruins making trips to Durham in 1984 (W, 2-0), 1995 (L, 3-4), and 2006 (W, 3-2). The Blue Devils emerged victorious in the most-recent matchup between the two schools, with Brian White notching an 88th minute goal to break a scoreless tie at Drake Stadium on Sept. 2, 2016. All seven matchups:
- UCLA 1-2 Duke - Sept. 12, 1982 (neutral)
- UCLA 2-0 Duke - Sept. 16, 1984 at Duke
- UCLA 3-0 Duke - Nov. 2, 1986 at UCLA
- UCLA 3-4 Duke - Sept. 10, 1995 at Duke (OT)
- UCLA 4-2 Duke - Nov. 2, 1997 at UCLA
- UCLA 3-2 Duke - Nov. 26, 2006 at Duke (OT; NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals)
- UCLA 0-1 Duke - Sept. 2, 2016 at UCLA
Postseason History Against Duke
UCLA and Duke have met just once in the postseason, with the Bruins taking down the Blue Devils 3-2 in overtime on Nov. 26, 2006 (NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals). The Bruins came back from a 2-0 deficit in that game, with Sal Zizzo notching a 78th minute equalizer and then scoring a golden goal just 30 seconds into the overtime session. Jason Leopoldo got the Bruins on the board in the 41st minute, halving a 2-0 lead the Blue Devils built after scoring twice in the opening 20 minutes of the game. Duke was the top-ranked team in the country at the time. The win sent UCLA to the College Cup, with the team ultimately finishing national runner-up.
On The Mark
So far this season, the Bruins have shown themselves to be adept at getting their shot attempts on target, with 96 of the team's 197 shots going on frame. UCLA's 49% shot accuracy as a team paces the Pac-12 Conference and ranks 12th in the country.
UCLA in the Pac-12 All-Conference Team
The Pac-12 Conference unveiled its 2021 all-conference team on Nov. 16, and the Bruins had seven players represented:
- 2nd Team (4): Justin Garces (GK), Pietro Grassi (D), Tommy Silva (D/F), Yoni Sorokin (MF)
- Honorable Mention (3): Kevin Diaz (F), Aaron Edwards (D), Ahmed Longmire (D)
- UCLA's seven honorees were third-most in the conference, narrowly trailing Oregon State (9) and Washington (8)
Hitting Pay Dirt
UCLA scored multiple goals in four consecutive games before being limited to a single goal at No. 2 Washington on Oct. 3. It was the first time the Bruins scored multiple goals in four consecutive games since Oct. 25 to Nov. 8, 2015. UCLA has scored in all but two games so far this season, and has notched multiple goals in 10-of-18 contests (53%). The Bruins have notched multiple goals in three consecutive games entering their matchup with Duke.
Entering the postseason, Tommy Silva led the team in goals and was tied for the team lead in points (6-4-16). In addition, his four game-winning goals this season pace the Bruins, are tied for the most among any Pac-12 player, and rank 19th nationally. Much of his production has come in bursts, as he has a pair of five-point performances this year (Sept. 6 vs. CSUN, Nov. 12 at SDSU; no other Bruin has a 5-point game this year). The left-side attacker has eight goals and seven assists for 23 points over 30 career games at UCLA.
Brace For Impact
The Bruins have received four braces this year, all coming in wins:
- Tommy Silva vs. CSUN - Sept. 6 (W, 4-0)
- Aaron Edwards vs. No. 14 Loyola Marymount - Oct. 14 (W, 2-1)
- Constantinos Michaelides vs. No. 1 Oregon State - Nov. 7 (W, 3-2)
- Tommy Silva at San Diego State - Nov. 12 (W, 4-1)
Lucky Number Seven
Despite playing a pair of quality teams, the Bruins posted a combined seven goals in their final two games of the regular season (vs. No. 1 Oregon State, at San Diego State). This marks the second time under third-year head coach Ryan Jorden that the Bruins have 3+ goals in back-to-back games, the first being Oct. 1-6, 2019 (8 total vs. UC Riverside, San Diego State).
In The Polls
UCLA appeared at No. 24 in this week's TopDrawerSoccer poll, and finished the regular season with the No. 25 RPI in the country. The United Soccer Coaches poll hadn't been updated as of Wednesday morning, but UCLA was a season-high No. 22 in their final poll of the regular season. The Bruins were ranked for 10 consecutive weeks in the United Soccer Coaches Far West Region poll, including a season-high No. 3 in last week's rankings (the regional poll also has not been updated).
Bruins Helping Bruins
So far this season, the Bruins have registered the full two assists on 15 of 25 goals scored in open play (60%). 13 separate Bruins have tallied a helper for UCLA, and 11 have registered multiple assists. Tucker Lepley and Jose Contell co-lead the Bruins with six assists apiece.
Nate the Great
Freshman keeper Nate Crockford has started the last three games in goal for UCLA, coinciding with the team's current three-game winning streak. Crockford has notched 14 saves so far, including a career-high eight in the regular season finale at SDSU, and has allowed one goal or fewer in two-of-three games.