Nov. 17, 2003
Santa Barbara, Calif. -
The 2003 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship Bracket was announced today by the NCAA's Selection Committee, with UC Santa Barbara receiving the No. 11 seed in the 48-team field. With the Gauchos, who will be playing in their second consecutive NCAA Tourney, receiving one of the 16 seeds they were granted a first round bye and will play the winner of San Jose State and Cal. The second round match will be played in Harder Stadium on Wednesday, November 26th with the kickoff time still to be determined.
UCSB has had recent history with both of the potential opponents who will battle it out on Saturday, November 22 in Berkeley, Calif. The Gauchos opened up their 2003 campaign in San Jose, drawing with the Spartans 1-1, and the Golden Bears knocked Santa Barbara out in the second round of the 2002 NCAA Tournament.
Fifth-year Head Coach Tim Vom Steeg, who now stands tied with the legendary Clive Charles as the 16th winningest coach in NCAA Division I history with a .708 career percentage, had the following to say about his teams' seeding:
"It's a really great accomplishment for the program, where we are now and where we came from. It's a credit to all the effort and energy that the players and coaching staff have put in. We are very excited, I think that we got what we deserved."
Last season the Gauchos hosted the University of San Diego in Harder Stadium in the first round of the tournament, where in front of nearly 5,000 fans UCSB earned the ticket to the second round with a 2-0 victory over the Toreros. Gauchos Assistant Coach Leo Chappel commented on receiving the opportunity to play another NCAA Tournament match at home:
"It's the greatest. We had a couple of let downs [at home] near the end of the season. The best thing about this group of players is that they stepped back and they learned from it. I think that we're a tough team to beat at home, no doubt about it."
Tickets for the match will be sold the day of the event at the Harder Stadium ticket office. There will also presale on the tickets, with the dates and times to determined later this week. For ticketing information the week of the event call 805-893-UCSB.