Aug. 16, 2001
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The second decade of Santa Clara University men's soccer under head coach Mitch Murray is officially underway as 42 players, including 18 letter winners, reported to campus and began training on Wednesday.
After completing one of the most successful decades in collegiate soccer during the 90's, Santa Clara looks once again to claim its place among the national elite over the next decade. The Broncos finished the 2000 season with a 10-7-0 overall record and a 4-2-0 record in the West Coast Conference. The third place finish in the WCC continued Murray's streak of never finishing lower than third in conference play.
The 2001 Broncos began their quest to return to national prominence earlier this week, beginning their grueling three-week training session that will conclude with their season opener at San Diego State on August 31st. Returning to the squad this year are eight starters and 16 letter winners from last year's team, which should help curb the usual learning curve that goes along with a new season.
The Broncos will train twice-a-day over the next two weeks on the Santa Clara campus before heading to San Diego one week prior to their season opener. The Broncos will spend a week at the U.S. Olympic Training Center getting ready both physically and mentally for the pending season.
"We hope the week spent down in San Diego will allow our guys to get acclimated not only with the different weather, but with each other and build that bond that great teams need to have," said Murray.
Murray will rely heavily on three all-WCC performers from last year to assist with the quick development of the younger players on the team. Reigning WCC Defender of the Year Jeff Stewart and second team all-WCC performers Anthony Chimienti and Rusty Johnson will provide the leadership and stability necessary for the successful development of those younger players.
Santa Clara will open its home season on Tuesday, September 4th, with a 6:00 p.m. start against Bradley University, a NCAA tournament participant last year. The Broncos home schedule includes four teams ranked in the top-25 of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America's preseason poll. Tickets for men's soccer and all Santa Clara University sports may be purchased online at www.santaclarabroncos.com or by calling the ticket office at 408-554-4660.