In their first two-game road test of the season, UCSB came out on the good end of identical 3-1 scores at Sacramento State and St. Mary's Friday and Sunday, respectively. The Gauchos used a goal in each match from Thiago "Thiba" Martins and Jaime Ambriz, and insurance scores from Brian Reardon and Sean Herrity to seal the victories. Stewart Sanders started both contests in goal for UCSB. UCSB improved to 5-2-0, their best start since 1995, setting them up for a Friday afternoon showdown with rival Westmont College in Montecito.
Anyone who hasn't heard of UCSB's prolific Brazilian goalscorer Thiago "Thiba" Martins is either out of the country or dead. The junior transfer from Santa Barbara City College has been shredding opposing defenses like wet one-ply tissue. After tallying a goal and assist vs. Sac State and another goal vs. St. Mary's, Thiba has early season totals of six goals and 14 points. He stands to crack UCSB's single season top ten lists in both categories. Martins is on pace for 17 goals and 40 total points in 1999. The Gaucho school records are 18 and 41, respectively. In addition to his six goals, Thiba is also tied with midfielders Kenny Newendorp and Steven Sosa for the team lead in assists with two. Finally, although no one can argue with Thiba's Gauchos' early season successes, it is worth noting that UCSB is at its best when the Brazilian scores. At 5-2-0, UCSB's only two losses have come in games in which Martins didn't find the back of the net.
No, the Gaucho front men aren't horse racing junkies, but the members of the goalscoring trio have been getting their fix in other ways this season. Martins (14), Ambriz (7) and Herrity (6) lead the Gauchos in scoring, having racked up 12 of the Gauchos' 15 goals. Ambriz connected in both games this weekend, while Herrity's Sunday goal gave him three in UCSB's last four contests. Sunday also marked the first time the three starting forwards had found the back of the net in the same game.
You Can Go Home Again
Having played at four local institutions in five years, chances were good that sooner or later Kenny Newendorp, the Pride of Santa Barbara, would have to go up against ex-teammates, and that time has come for the senior midfielder. Newendorp spent his high school days at San Marcos before playing two years for current Gaucho head coach Tim Vom Steeg at SBCC, where he was a member of the Vaqueros' 1996 State Championship team. He then played one season at Westmont, helping the Warriors to an early season 2-1 triumph over the Gauchos at Harder Stadium and a GSAC title, en route to a season' end ranking of fifth in the NAIA. However, the wiley double agent's number is finally up, as Newendorp's Gauchos will travel to Montecito to face his former Westmont College Warriors Friday at 4:00 p.m. * UCSB will host UC Irvine at 3:00 Sunday afternoon. The anteaters downed the Gauchos 3-1 last season. The match will not count in the MPSF standings, although UCI is in the Pacific division of the conference with the Gauchos. The teams will play an MPSF game at Irvine in October.
The Bottom Line: Gaucho Scoring and Goalkeeping Leaders
Scoring: Thiago Martins 14 (6 goals, 2 assists), Jaime Ambriz (3 goals, 1 assist), Sean Herrity 6 (3 goals), Lucas Dalgleish 3 (1 goal, 1 assist). Goalkeeping: Stewart Sanders 1.16 GAA, 25 saves, 2 ShO.