Gauchos Host Westmont in Saturday Exhibition, Open Regular Season Aug. 22 vs. Minnesota

Lauren Hess (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Lauren Hess (Photo by Tony Mastres)

The Schedule
Exhibition Game No. 1
Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019 at 5:30 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Westmont College Warriors
at UCSB's Harder Stadium

Game No. 1
Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. University of Minnesota Golden Gophers
at UCSB's Harder Stadium

Gauchos Debut vs. Wesmont Saturday, Host Minnesota Thursday
The UC Santa Barbara women's soccer season will kick-off on Saturday, Aug. 17 when the Gauchos host crosstown opponent Westmont College in an exhibition game. The match against the Warriors will be the first of four consecutive home contests for UCSB, which will host Minnesota on Thursday, Aug. 22, San Jose State on Sunday, Aug. 25 and Cal. The four matches are the beginning of one of the program's finest home schedules ever. Other non-conference home matches indlude Grand Canyon (Sept. 13), Stanford (Sept. 15) and Fresno State (Sept. 10). Stanford advanced to the Final Four in 2018 and are ranked among the top-5 again this season.

Stumpf Enters 21st Season as Head Coach
Paul Stumpf is entering his 21st season as UCSB's head coach. He enters the year with a school record 188 wins and an overall mark of 188-163-45. Stumpf is a two-time Big West Conference Coach of the Year (1999 and 2015), he has guided the program to two NCAA Tournaments, coached six Big West Offensive Players of the Year and three Big West Freshmen of the Year. Including his one season as an assistant coach at UCSB, he has been with the program for 22 seasons.

UCSB Picked to Finish 2nd in 2019 Big West Race
The UC Santa Barbara women's soccer team has been picked to finish in second-place in the annual poll of the Big West Conference coaches. The Gauchos, who finished second in the regular season standings in 2018 with an overall record of 13-7-1 and a conference mark of 5-2-1, earned 69 total points and one first-place vote in the poll. Long Beach State, the regular season and Big West Tournament winner in 2018, received five first-place votes and 76 total points. UC Irvine was picked third with two first-place votes and 65 total points. Cal State Fullerton was a distant fourth-place pick with 42 points. CSUN and UC Riverside each garnered 35 points for fifth-place, Hawai'i was seventh with 31 points, UC Davis was eighth with 28 and Cal Poly received one first-place vote and 24 total points for ninth-place.

Murison Named to Preseason All-Big West Team, Leads Returnees
Senior forward Shaelan Murison was named to the Preseason All-Big West Conference Team and it's now wonder. Murison was a First Team All-Big West selection in 2018 after finishing second in the league in goals with 10 and total points with 24. She is the league's top returning scorer and should be one of the top scoring threats once again. Murison enters her senior season with 17 career goals and nine career assists for 43 points. 

DeWeese Returns in Goal
Senior Hanna DeWeese entered UCSB's 2018 match at Cal in the second half and never left the lineup again. DeWeese played in 16 contests as a junior and made 15 starts. She posted a 0.94 goals against average and came up with 60 saves and a save percentage of .800. She had five complete game shutouts, including a victory over UC Irvine in the semifinal round of the Big West Tournament to propel the Gauchos into the conference championship match. In all, the Carlsbad, Calif., native allowed two or fewer goals in 15 of her 16 appearances and finished with a 9-6-1 record.

Some Happy Returns
It would be overstating it to say the Gauchos have many happy returns in 2019, but, in fact, they do have some key returnees from a 2018 team that won 13 games. In addition to Shaelan Murison and Hanna DeWeese, UCSB returns a handful of other starters. Senior midfielder Lynsee Voss (16 matches/14 matches started/3 goals), senior forward Katherine Sheehy (19 matches/17 matches started/1 goal and 5 assists), junior midfielder Christine Maurer (17 matches/15 matches started/2 goals and 1 assist), sophomore midfielder Lauren Hess (21 matches/19 matches started/Big West All-Freshman Team) and senior defender Sophia Dertorossian (21 matches/21 matches started).

Key Newcomers Could Contribute Immediately
The Gauchos will depend on some important newcomers, three of which are transfers. Emma Vanderhyden played her first two seasons at Eastern Washington and will give UCSB another veteran presence on the backline. Midfielder Angelica Ortega joins the program after two seasons at Santiago Community College where she was the California State Player of the Year as a sophomore. According to Coach Paul Stumpf, she has exceeded all expectations. Another JC transfer, forward Isabella Viana, joins the Gauchos from Santa Barbara City College, where she was an All-Western States Conference choice. In addition to the transfer, freshman midfielder Dylan Lewis (Los Angeles, Calif./Culver City HS) could have an immediate impact.