Sept. 19, 2007
Up Next: The University of New Mexico men's soccer team will hit the road this weekend for a two-game swing through California. The 28th-ranked Lobos will first travel to Cal State Northridge on Thursday, Sept. 20, for a 5:00 p.m. (M.D.T.) match against the Matadors. UNM will then head to San Francisco on Saturday, Sept. 22, for an 8:00 p.m. (M.D.T.) kickoff against the 12th-ranked Dons.
Cal State Northridge comes into the match with a 3-1-1 mark on the season. The Matadors have wins over Detroit, Cleveland State and UNLV, a loss to Michigan and a tie against Memphis. Cal State Northridge has nine starters returning from a team that posted an 8-6-5 mark last season. One of their six losses came against New Mexico on Sept. 10, when David Gualdarama one-timed the game-winner from the top of the box in the 68th minute to give the Lobos a 1-0 win. It is the fifth consecutive year these two teams wil meet, with the Lobos leading the all-time series at 6-3-1. The last time UNM visited Northridge was in 2004 when the 19th ranked Lobos won 3-2. New Mexico is 1-2-1 in four trips to the Matadors' home field.
An audio broadcast of the Lobos-Matadors match will be available through Cal State Northridge's website www.GoMatadors.com. Links to the audio broadcast will also be available on GoLobos.com.
The Lobos-Dons game will be a rematch of last year's NCAA first round battle won by New Mexico 1-0 in San Francisco. Stephen Brown snuck in a goal off a corner kick from Joey Vitalgiano with 18 seconds left on the clock to give the Lobos the win and their third straight trip to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. That win also evened the all-time series between the two schools at two wins each and gave UNM its first win in two trips to USF. This season USF is ranked No. 12 in the current Soccer America Top-25 and boasts a 4-1-0 record. After a season-opening loss to Vermont, the Dons have won four straight against Alabama A&M, San Jose State, No. 11 Cal and Stanford. The Dons scored at least two goals in each of their four wins over the last two weekends.
USF will provide video and play-by-play for their match with UNM. A link to the broadcast is available on the Dons' website www.USFDons.com. Click the `Audio/Video' link in the drop-down menu under `Athletics' to access the broadcast. A link to the broadcast will also be available on GoLobos.com. Live stats will also be provided through GameTracker on GoLobos.com.
Cal state Northridge Matadors (3-1-1)
Location: Northridge, Calif.
Conference: Big West
Head Coach: Terry Davila (CS-Northridge `94)
Record at Cal State Northridge: 88-55-20 (9)
Career Record: same
Letterwinners Returning/Lost: 16/8
2006 Record: 8-6-5
2006 Conference Record: 5-2-3 (3rd)
UNM vs. Cal State Northridge: 6-3-1
Last Time: No. 15 UNM won 1-0 (9/10/06) at Home
Last Time at Cal State Northridge: No. 19 UNM won 3-2
Top Goal Scorer: Delvin Deldo, Sunghyun Kim, Camilo Rojas (2)
Top Assists: Delvin Deldo (2)
Top Goalie: Kevin Guppy (0.60 g.a.a., 3 SHO)
Notes: The Matadors are led by junior keeper Kevin Guppy. Guppy posted shutout wins over Cleveland State and UNLV last weekend. He now has 16 on his career, making him the all-time leader in shutouts at Cal State Northridge. Junior midfielder Devin Deldo leads the team in scoring with two goals and two assists. Sophomore Sunghyum Kim, a 2nd team All-Big West selection last season, has a pair of goals and an assist, while freshman Camilo Rojos also has a pair of assists.
Web Site: www.GoMatadors.com
No. 12 San Francisco Dons (4-1-0)
Location: San Francisco, Calif.
Conference: West Coast
Head Coach: Erik Visser (San Francisco `82)
Record at San Francisco: 67-47-8 (8)
Career Record: same
Letterwinners Returning/Lost: 12/8
2006 Record: 12-7-1 (NCAA)
2006 Conference Record: 7-5-0 (2nd)
UNM vs. San Francisco: 2-2-0
Last Time: UNM won 1-0 (11/10/06) at San Francisco
Top Goal Scorer: Connor Chinn (4)
Top Assists: Daniel DeGreer, Brandon McDonald (2)
Top Goalie: Eric Connor (1.26 g.a.a in 3 games)
Notes: The Dons are led by sophomore Connor Chinn, the reigning West Coast Conference Player of the Week. Chinn scored both goals in the Don's 2-1 win over No. 11 Cal on Friday and added another in a 2-1 OT win over Stanford on Sunday. He has nine points on four goals and an assist on the season. Senior defender Daniel DeGeer has also earned player of the week honors this season, scoring two goals in a 3-2 win against San Jose State. He also earned a spot on the CollegeSoccerNews.com National Team of the Week. USF has split time with a pair of keepers in goal. Junior Eric Conner has started three games and has a 1.26 g.a.a. while senior Jeremy Coupe has made two starts and has a 1.42 g.a.a.
Web Site: www.USFDons.com
Recapping Last Weekend: The Lobos split a pair of matches last weekend against top-25 teams. UNM dropped a 1-0 decision to No. 24 Washington on Friday, but rebounded with a 2-1 win over No. 9 UC Santa Barbara on Sunday. Junior Chris Wright and senior Diego Barrera both added their second goals of the season in the match against UCSB.
BARRERA NAMED MPSF PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Diego Barrera was named the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Week. Barrera, a senior from Thousand Oaks, Calif., scored the game-winner in the Lobos' 2-1 win over No. 9 and defending NCAA Champion UC Santa Barbara on Sunday. With the strike against the Gauchos, Barrera has a team-high six points on two goals and two assists. He is also tied for the MPSF lead in scoring and assists. Barrera transferred to UNM from Loyola Marymount prior to the start of the season. An all-region selection in 2006, Barrera was one of the most sought after transfers in college soccer over the summer. His impact on the Lobos has been immediate, with his other goal being a game-winner against Cincinnati on Sept. 9.
Lobos Boast Highest Winning % Since 2004: The University of New Mexico men's soccer team boasts the highest winning percentage in Division I over the last three years. The Lobos are 52-10-8 (.800) since the start of 2004. Only Maryland (54-17-6) and UC Santa Barbara (53-17-6) have more wins than the Lobos over the last three years. Here is a look at the top teams in the nation based on winning percentage since 2004.
New Mexico - 52-10-8 - .800
Akron - 48-13-8 - .754
Indiana - 50-13-11 - .750
SMU - 49-14-9 - .743
Maryland - 54-17-6 - .740
UCSB - 53-17-6 - .737
Lobos not a good host for defending champs: UNM's 2-1 win over No. 9 and defending NCAA Champion UC Santa Barbara Gauchos marks the second time in three years a defending champion has left the UNM Soccer Complex with a loss. New Mexico also dropped No. 1 Indiana at home on Sept. 19, 2004, 1-0 in double-overtime.
Lobos taking on tough Competition: So far this season the Lobos have posted a 2-1-0 record against teams the were in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. UNM defeated Cincinnati 1-0, a first round participant, and UCSB 2-1, the 2006 NCAA Champs. UNM has split its two matches against top-25 teams, defeating the Gauchos and dropping a 1-0 match to No. 24 Washington.
Graczyk ties all-time shutout mark at unm: Senior keeper Mike Graczyk tied the Lobos' all-time shutout mark with a 1-0 win over Cincinnati on Sept. 9, the 25th of his career. He is now even with his predecessor Andrew Weber who played nearly every minute in goal from 2001-04. Graczyk was named to CollegeSoccerNews.com's preseason All-American second team and the Soccer America preseason All-American squad coming in to 2007. His 0.64 career g.a.a. coming into the season was the lowest in school history. Graczyk has been the primary keeper since the start of the 2005 season and played in every minute of every game in 2006.
Lobos Picked to Win MPSF Title...Again: The coached around the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation selected UNM as the preseason favorite to win the MPSF in 2007. New Mexico is going for its fourth straight conference title and the sixth in the last seven years.
2007 MPSF Preseason Coaches Poll
1. New Mexico
3. San Jose State
4. Sacramento State
6 . Air Force
In The Rankings: The Lobos are currently No. 28 in the CollegeSoccerNews.com Top 30 but have dropped out of all the other polls this week. New Mexico has now been ranked for 43 consecutive weeks, dating back to the start of 2004.
Sajjadi, Brown Power Texans to National title: Sophomores Bryan Sajjadi and Stephen Brown led their Dallas Texas club team to the U.S.Y.S.A. U-19 National Title in July. It is the third straight national championships for the duo as members of the Texans. Ironically, they defeated fellow Lobo Zach Tierney's Chicago Magic squad in the finals.
Academic All-American Streak Continues: When Chris Wright earned CoSIDA ESPN The Magazine 2nd Team Academic All-American honors last season, it gave the Lobos at least one representative on the squad each year since 2003. Duquesne, Maryland and Wisconsin-Milwaukee are the only other schools to have at least one student-athlete honored each year during that same stretch.
Nine All-MPSF Honorees Return: Not only do the Lobos return nine starters in 2007, but they also have nine players who were honored on one of the MPSF's three all-league squads in 2006. Senior's David Gualdarama and Mike Graczyk and sophomore Simon Ejdemyr were first team selections in 2006. Returning from the second team are juniors Mike Porter and Chris Wright and sophomore Zach Tierney while third team honorees who are back from last year include senior Joey Vitagliano, junior Jack Smithson and sophomore Stephen Brown.
Recruiting class ranked NO. 31: CollegeSoccerNews.com pegged the 2007 Lobo recruiting class as the 31st best in the nation. It is the fourth year in a row New Mexico has had its recruiting class in the top-40 by CollegeSoccerNews.com. Senior Diego Barrera, sophomores Charles Conway and Ryan Lytle and freshmen Ryan Farquharson, Joel Theissen and James Urbany make up the 2007 incoming class.
Two All-Americans Ready for 2007: A pair of NSCAA High School/Youth All-Americans are ready for action after redshirtting the 2006 campaign. Freshman Michael Reed, the 2005 New Mexico Player of the Year, had a medical redshirt in 2006 after injuring his knee. He is still rehabbing the injury and could be ready for the season weekend of the regular season. Freshman Gardner Morrow also sat out last season, but the former Vermont Player of the Year is looking for a productive 2007 slate. Other redshirts who are ready to play this season include freshmen Eric Staver, Justin Fite, Dominique Romero and Andrew Parsons.