Aug. 13, 2004
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - With at least three of its six fall sports teams expected to rank among the various national top-25 polls and two teams having already arrived on the Mission campus for preseason workouts, the Santa Clara University Department of Athletics and Recreation is already gearing up for another successful season in 2004-05. The Bronco women's soccer team reported to campus the first week of August then embarked on a 10-day trip to Costa Rica. A NCAA quarterfinalist last season, Santa Clara enters 2004 as the preseason favorite to capture its eighth West Coast Conference title since 1993 and will be looking to advance to the College Cup for the 10th time in school history. Jon Wallace's women's volleyball squad, ranked 22nd in the AVCA national poll, began preseason drills August 13 with a youthful squad that features one of the nation's top recruiting classes. Despite the loss of All-America Becky Potter and setter Kelli Sousa, who led the nation in assists as a junior in 2002, the Bronco program is picked to finish second in the WCC this season and is generally considered among the country's top programs. Only an improbable overtime goal by eventual champion Indiana prevented the Bronco men's soccer team from advancing to the national title game last season. This year, a veteran squad reports to campus on August 16 expecting to compete for a national title as the favorite to win the much-respected WCC. Despite the loss of two players who left college early to become first round draft picks in Major League Soccer, Santa Clara returns All-America Will Weatherly and U.S. U19 National Team member Erik Ustruck to its talented first team. The theme for the 2004-05 season at SCU is Bronco Spirit. With the help of generous alumni and local contributors, the athletic department retooled the school's fight song ("Fight For Santa Clara") and is reintroducing a number of traditions to SCU athletics this year. With the help of the Ruff Riders, the Student-Athlete Advisory Council, the Activities Planning Board, the SCU Cheerleaders and a number of others, athlettics is embarking on an initiative to encourage faculty, staff, the student body and the local community to help increase school spirit. Tickets to all Bronco volleyball and men's and women's soccer matches are currently available by calling 408/554-4660 or by clicking here. In addition, season tickets and family plans for SCU men's and women's basketball are also available, as are tickets to the 2004 Pete Newell Challenge and the 2005 WCC Championships. A few other highlights from Bronco Athletics
Fall Sports Home Openers
Volleyball - Sept. 1 vs. Sacramento State, 7 p.m.
Cross Country - Sept. 4 at Bronco Invitational
Men's Soccer - Sept. 16 vs. San Jose State, 7:30 p.m.
Women's Soccer - Sept. 24 vs. Marquette, 7:30 p.m.
Men's Water Polo, Oct. 17 vs. UC Santa Cruz, 1 p.m.