Men's Soccer Begins Second Half of WCC Season

Men's Soccer Begins Second Half of WCC Season

Oct. 29, 2003

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This Week: Broncos Travel to Moraga for WCC Road Match
Santa Clara men's soccer begins the second half of its West Coast Conference season this weekend with a 1 p.m. matchup against Saint Mary's on Sunday in Moraga, Calif. The Broncos ended the first half of the league season with a perfect 3-0-0 record and are currently tied atop the WCC standings with San Diego who is also 3-0-0 in conference play.

No. 5 Santa Clara vs. Saint Mary's
The Broncos and Gaels will square off for the 31st time in the two program's histories with SCU holding an overwhelming 27-2-2 advantge in the all-time series. The last time that the Broncos lost to the Gaels was in Moraga on November 14, 1997, a 2-0 loss that cost SCU the outright conference crown. SCU is 5-1-1 at Garaventa Field in their last seven matches at Saint Mary's, including a 1-0 victory in 2001, which was also the last time the Broncos captured the WCC crown with their 5-1-0 record. SMC is currently 6-10-0 overall and 1-3-0 in leauge play. They have split their last two contests, capturing a 2-1, double overtime victory at LMU on October 19 before dropping a 1-0 contest last weekend at home against USF. Jon Bernal and Matthew Fitzgerald lead the team with their nine points on the year with Bernal scoring four goals and adding one assist, while Ftizgerald has three goals and three assists. Kellan Wilson has taken every minute between the pipes for Saint Mary's, notching a 1.77 goals-against average in his 1474:34 minutes of play.

Pan Named WCC Player of the Week
SCU defender Jason Pan was named the West Coast Conference Player of the Week on Monday following his game-winning goal performance in double overtime against Portland Saturday night at Buck Shaw Stadium. The junior from Milwaukee, Wis., placed a free kick from just outside the penalty box into the lower right corner of the goal to lift the Broncos to a 1-0 win with only 1:47 remaining in double overtime. The goal was his third of the season and second in league play, as his first conference goal came off a similar play in the first half at San Francisco, a match in which the Broncos ended up winning 2-1. His stellar defensive play also helped the stingy Bronco defense to their second shutout in the last four games and their ninth shutout of the season. While Pan has been on the field, SCU has posted a 0.53 goals-against average. Pan's three goals this season rank second on the team while his six points place him in a tie for fourth.

Rast in Elite Company
Second year head coach Cameron Rast became only the second head coach in Santa Clara men's soccer history to win 10 games in his first two years at the helm of the program. He joins his predacessor and mentor Mitch Murray as the only two to have accomplished the feat. Rast is now 21-8-4 overall after going 10-6-1 in his first year while Murrary posted records of 20-1-2 and 10-7-1 in his first two campaigns. Former coaches Dave Chaplik (1972-80), Ralph Perez (1981-85) and Steve Sampson (1986-90) all posted 10 wins in two of their first three seasons, but not posted back-to-back 10-win years to begin their coaching careers on the Mission Campus.

Last Week: Broncos Defeat Portland in Double Overtime
Jason Pan's goal with only 1:47 remaining in double overtime lifted the sixth-ranked Santa Clara University men's soccer team to a 1-0 victory over the University of Portland Saturday night at Buck Shaw Stadium. Much like last season's double-overtime contest in Portland, the Broncos and Pilots battled tooth and nail the entire match. This time it was SCU who came out on top as Pan's third goal of the season moved the Broncos' record to 11-2-3 overall and 3-0-0 in West Coast Conference action. With the loss, Portland falls to 7-7-0 overall and 2-1-0 in league play. The first half was dominated by the defense on both sides as only one shot was taken by either team in the half. Santa Clara out-shot Portland by a 5-4 margin in the second half and a 3-0 margin the overtime periods. The final shot was the one that counted as the Broncos took advantage of the Pilots' aggressive nature as their 21st foul of the game came just outside the penalty box. Pan, a junior from Milwaukee, Wis., bent a low ball around the right side of the wall and just inside the right post into the back of the net for the game-winner. Portland keeper Luis Robles made two saves in the second half but was unable to reach the low bending shot from Pan in the second overtime. Paul Robinson was very good for Portland on the defensive side and his lone shot of the game was a dangerous one that SCU netminder Steve Cronin was able to stop. Cronin was brilliant between the pipes for SCU, making four saves on the five shots taken by the Pilots. Ryan Cochrane and Pan also guided the stingy Bronco defense as the duo dominated play in the Santa Clara half, both in the air and on the ground. The shutout is the team's ninth of the season and Cronin's sixth.

Talk About Home Field Advantage
Santa Clara improved to 5-0-1 at home in 2003 and extended their home unbeaten streak to 11, with its 1-0 double overtime victory over Portland last weekend. The Broncos' last loss at "The Shaw" came on September 26, 2002 to California. SCU's all-time record at Buck Shawis now 172-67-20, which is a .703 winning percentage. Since the WCC began sponsoring soccer in 1988, Santa Clara has dominated at home, registering a 118-24-11 (.807 win percentage) overall record at Buck Shaw, including a 31-4-3 (.813 win percentage) against WCC teams.

In the Rankings
The Santa Clara University men's soccer team rose to No. 5 in the Soccer America poll while remaining steady at No. 6 in the Soccer Times poll. They rose to No. 9 in both the NSCAA Coaches' Poll and the College Soccer News Poll. and No. 12 in the College Soccer News poll. Three WCC teams remained on the NSCAA/Adidas Far West Region Poll this week. Santa Clara achieved their highest ranking so far this season, moving up two spots to No. 2, behind only UCLA. San Diego stayed at No. 7 despite an overtime victory over Loyola Marymount. The Lions remained at No. 9 despite the loss to San Diego. Portland's loss to Santa Clara dropped them out of the poll after checking in last week at No. 10.

Up Next: Broncos Return Home for Matchup with San Diego
Santa Clara returns to Buck Shaw Stadium next weekend for its final regular season home match of the year. The Broncos will play host to the visiting Toreros of San Diego on Senior Day at "The Shaw." SCU will honor its four outgoing seniors, Audren Cashman, Kirk Fonseca, Kellen Gilmore and Matt Upton, with a special prematch ceremony at midfield. Santa Clara has won its last three senior day matches, and nine of its last 10. The Broncos hold a commanding 16-8-1 all-time series advantage over USD.

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