UCR, UCSB Women's Soccer Undefeated in 2014
Women's Soccer Release No. 2
This Week in the Big West - August 25-31, 2014
UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara are perfect through the first weekend of the 2014 season.
BIG WEST AT A GLANCE
Splitsville: Cal Poly heads into the second week of the 2014 season with a 1-1 overall record after dropping its first match to Pepperdine in a 2-1 loss on the road and finishing off the weekend with a 2-0 shutout over Lamar at home.
First And Foremost: Junior Allie Begin scored the first goal of the new season for the Big West Friday, when she headed a perfect cross from Breanna Rittmann straight into the back of the net. The goal marked Begin’s second collegiate netter for the Mustangs.
Giannetti The Giant: Giannetti recorded a total of nine saves over the weekend, including seven in the season opener. The junior currently ranks fourth in the CP record book for career saves and has also started every match since becoming a Mustang in 2012.
Half And Half History: In the last five seasons, the Mustangs have split their opening weekend twice (2010, 2011). In 2009 CP went 0-2 and in 2012 and 2013 the Mustangs went undefeated.
CAL STATE FULLERTON
Holding Their Own: Although its record does not reflect a winning weekend, Cal State Fullerton covered significant ground after opening the 2014 season with a double overtime draw against No. 22 Brigham Young. The last time the Titans emerged with either a win or a tie over a ranked opponent was on Sept. 30, 2012 versus No. 21 Long Beach State in a 2-1 victory.
#BWCWords: Coach Demian Brown on season opening tie: “It’s a great way for us to start going into a season. The things that happened through the course of the game were completely expected in the sense that BYU is a great program.” *Check out more #BWCWords HERE
First Impression: Sophomore Ivy Diego came up clutch in Friday’s match versus the Cougars when she scored the equalizer on a double assist from teammates Connie Caliz and Christina Burkenroad. This marked Diego’s first collegiate goal as a Titan.
Dynamic Defense: While CSUN is still looking for its first win of 2014, the Matadors have only given up two goals, tied for third-best in the Big West after falling to No. 7 Michigan 2-0 and playing to a 0-0 double overtime stalemate at Toledo.
TOUGH Tafoya: Junior Cynthia Tafoya kept the Matadors in the game Sunday, holding Toledo scoreless through 110 minutes of action. The junior goalkeeper has six saves to start the season, the fifth-best total in the league so far. Sunday’s game also marked Tafoya’s third career shutout. The junior entered the season ranked fourth in conference with a 119 career save total among active leaders.
In The Bonus: With Sunday’s draw, the Matadors’ overtime record improves to 4-5-9 since 2009. Last season CSUN went 1-1-1 in OT.
Spread Success: A total of 14 players took shots over the weekend led by Brittanie Sakajian who had five. Last season a total of 10 players combined to score 17 goals.
LONG BEACH STATE
On The Hunt: Long Beach State looks for its first win of the new season after dropping its season opener in a 1-0 finish against USC and battling to a 0-0 double overtime draw versus No. 20 Georgetown. The 49ers held their own over the ranked Hoyas and are now 2-1-1 versus top 25 teams since 2013. LBSU’s next ranked opponent will be Denver on Aug. 31.
Shotstopper: Sophomore goalkeeper Ashton McKeown recorded the first shutout of her collegiate career, Sunday. The 49ers recorded four shutouts in 2013.
Stat-Strong: LBSU bested the Hoyas in shots (11-7) and shots on goal (6-2) while also outshooting the Trojans 10-5, Friday. Mimi Rangel led the Beach with five shots, three of which were on goal.
Home Field Advantage: Last season the 49ers also started off slow going 0-2 in its first weekend of play before stringing together a three-game win-streak that included No. 23 Texas Tech. Long Beach looks to bounce back in a similar fashion with its home opener Friday.
Weekend Split: In the new Aggie era, UC Davis started the 2014 season strong with a 1-0 win over rival Sacramento State before dropping its second match of the new year to San Diego State.
Unbeaten Out Of The Blocks: 2014 marks the fifth straight year in which the Aggies have won their season opener. Since their inaugural season in the Big West in 2007, the Aggies have yet to drop an opener and own a 6-0-2 all-time record in the conference in their first games of the season.
Best In League: UCD currently leads the Big West with a .632 shots on goal percentage with the third-best number of shots on goal at 12. Five Aggies made attempts on goal while Kayla Collins and Celina Minissian led the pack with four apiece.
Fast Start: Sophomore Minissian netted the Aggies’ first goal of the season in the 81st minute Friday -- her first in a Davis jersey.
Headed Home: The Aggies return home to host San Jose State in their home opener Friday.
Top 25 Trials: In UC Irvine’s first weekend of 2014, the Anteaters faced some of its toughest competition in No. 10 Santa Clara and defending national champions, UCLA. The ’Eaters fell 2-0 and 3-0 respectively.
Tip-Top Shape: No. 1 UCLA was the first top-ranked team the Anteaters have ever faced in program history. They have played a No. 2 program twice in UCLA (2006) and Stanford (2011).
Getting The Goals: The last time the Anteaters were shutout in back-to-back games was on Sept. 22 and Oct. 4 versus Washington State and UC Santa Barbara, the only occasion last season. However, the ’Eaters had the second-best goal total last season with 29 goals scored in 18 games played for a 1.61 goal-per-game average.
Pressure Builds Diamonds: Already having played two top-25 teams, Irvine’s non-conference schedule is ranked the 55th toughest in the nation. UCI is now 7-8-1 versus ranked opponents since 2010.
Undefeated: After taking down Grand Canyon 3-0 and Northern Arizona 4-2 in the UNLV Rebel Classic, the Highlanders are undefeated at 2-0 for the sixth time in their 14-year history.
Keep Them Coming: The Highlanders scored four goals Sunday for the first time since Sept. 7, 2008 when they shutout San Jose State 4-0. UCR scored a season-high three goals in 2013 on Oct. 4 versus CSUN in a 3-1 win.
MVP: Junior Tyler Cunningham was named the UNLV Rebel Classic Tournament Most Outstanding Player after leading the Highlanders to an unbeaten 2-0 mark in the tourney. Cunningham netted a goal and recorded two assists over the weekend.
Recognitions: Alina Cheatham, Amber Marani and Cunningham received All-Tournament honors for their efforts in Las Vegas.
Thrice As Nice: If the Highlanders take their next match versus San Diego State on the road, it will be the first time UCR wins three in a row to begin a campaign since 2008.
UC SANTA BARBARA
Pitch Perfect: UC Santa Barbara recorded a perfect opening weekend with a 3-0 win over Cleveland State Friday and a 2-0 victory versus Southern Utah, Sunday, in its two-game home-stand.
Top Echelon Underclassmen: Of Santa Barbara’s four goal-scorers over the weekend, two were underclassmen in freshmen Amanda Ball and Brittney McKinney. Freshman Zoe Purcell and sophomore Dakota Griggs recorded assists to help the Gauchos to back-to-back victories. In Ball’s first collegiate showings, the first year has already recorded two game-winners.
Tim Howard-esque: Goalkeeper Beth Ritter recorded the ninth and 10th shutouts of her career dating back to the 2013 campaign. The Gauchos recorded five back-to-back shutouts last season from Sept. 6 to Sept. 20 for a total of nine blank sheets in 2013.
Stockpiling Points: UCSB netted five goals in the first weekend, the most its scored in a single weekend since Sept. 14th and 16th, 2012 when the Gauchos netted three over San Francisco and two versus Weber State. *Coach Paul Stumpf discussed preseason goal of scoring more goals in the #BWCWarmUp HERE
Tournament Tests: Hawai‘i begins the new season at 0-2 after falling to Arizona State 5-2 Sunday and Texas 2-1, Monday. The Rainbow Wahine look to the OHANA Hotels No Ka Oi to record their first W of 2014.
Taking Chances: While UH didn’t emerge with a win, the Rainbow Wahine own the second-best mark in league with a .167 shot percentage. Krystal Pascua paced the squad with six followed closely by Storm Kenui who had four of her own. A total of nine players put up shots over the weekend.
Power Performances: Lidia Battaglia, Kenui and Krystal Pascua received All-Tournament Team honors for their efforts in the Outrigger Resorts Shootout. Krystal Pascua recorded her first goal of the season and her first in the Big West. Pascua led the team in 2012 with four netters and has nine career goals as a Rainbow Wahine.
They’ve Got Spirit: Prior to the start of the season coach Michele Nagamine spoke to the team’s energy -- something that wasn’t lacking over the weekend as UH scored their first goal of the season just seven minutes into play, Saturday.