Gauchos Host Minnesota Thursday to Open Regular Season

Emma Vanderhyden (Photo by Eric Isaacs)
Emma Vanderhyden (Photo by Eric Isaacs)

This Week
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
Video Stream:

Game No. 2
Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019 at 12:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. San Jose State Spartans
at UCSB's Harder Stadium

Tickets Available Now (CLICK HERE)
Season and single-game tickets for UCSB men's and women's soccer are available online by clicking here. There are numerous great plans available for both programs or for combined season tickets.

Gauchos Host Minnesota, San Jose State to Open Regular Season
The UC Santa Barbara women's soccer season will get underway for real when it hosts Minnesota on Thursday, Aug. 22 and San Jose State on Sunday, Aug. 25. The Gauchos previewed their 2019 campaign on Saturday, Aug. 17 with a 2-0 exhibition win over Westmont College. The games against Minnesota and San Jose will kick-off an outstanding non-conference home schedule for UCSB. In addition, there will be home contests against Cal (5:00 p.m. on Aug. 30), Grand Canyon (7:00 p.m. on Sept. 13), Stanford (1:00 p.m. on Sept. 15) and Fresno State (7:00 p.m. on Sept. 20). In addition, the Gauchos conference home schedule will include defending league champion Long Beach State, Central Coast rival Cal Poly, UC Riverside and UC Irvine.

The Opponents
The Gauchos and Minnesota have played three times with the Golden Gophers holding an 2-1 all-time edge. Minnesota defeated UCSB 2-0 on Sept. 4, 2010 and again 1-0 on Aug. 28, 2011, but last time the teams tangled, on Sept. 1, 2017 in Minneapolis, the Gauchos won 1-0. Santa Barbara and San Jose State have played 10 times with UCSB holding a 6-2-2 lead. The teams last played on Aug. 20 with the Gauchos posting a 1-0 win at Harder Stadium.

UCSB Blanks Westmont 2-0 in 2019 Preview
On Saturday, Aug. 17, UCSB recorded a 2-0 win over visiting Westmont College in the annual exhibition game between the schools. Senior forward Shaelan Murison dominated the Warriors as she piled up eight shots, including six on frame, in her 53 minutes of action. Murison scored an unassisted goal to get the Gauchos on the board in the 26th minute. In the 40th minute, Angelica Ortega scored on an assist from Jessica Wright to give her team the 2-0 lead. Ortega, the 2018 California State Community College Player of the Year at Rancho Santiago College, is expected to play a major offensive role fore Santa Barbara in 2019. In all, UCSB outshot Westmont by a 16-5 margin. Three goalkeepers (Hanna DeWeese, Evann Smith and Natalie Hill) combined for the shutout and needed just one save in the process.

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.

The Gauchos in Season Openers
UCSB is 19-13-4 all-time in season opening matches. The Gauchos have won their last three and five of their last six. Paul Stumpf has seen his teams go 10-7-3 in their first game of the regular season, bur since his first five teams went 0-4-1, they have gone 10-3-2 in the last 15 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 no 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. She was dominant in UCSB's exhibition game against Westmont with eight shots, six on goal, and the team's first goal.

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.