September 22, 2005

Gauchos Take Four-Match Winning Streak to Arizona State, 23rd-Ranked Arizona

Sept. 22, 2005

The Schedule
Match No. 9
Friday, September 23, 2005 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at Arizona State Sun Devils
at ASU's Sun Devil Soccer Stadium

Match No. 10
Sunday, September 25, 2005 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at University of Arizona Wildcats
at Arizona's Murphey Stadium

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara enters its road matches in the Grand Canyon State with an overall record of 5-3-0. The Gauchos' Big West mark continues to sit at 0-0 and that is likely to hold true until they play their first league opponent. Since losing three consecutive contests, UCSB has won four straight. Two weekends ago, the Gauchos defeated Rutgers (2-0) and Villanova (2-1) to win the Maryland/adidas Classic. Last week, they posted non-conference home wins over Hawaii (3-1) and George Washington (1-0). With victories in four straight matches, UCSB has equaled its longest winning streak of the 2004 season.

This Week
UCSB will head to the desert to play at Arizona State and at 23rd-ranked Arizona. When the Gauchos return home they will host third-ranked UCLA on Wednesday, Sept. 28, at 7:00 p.m. Santa Barbara has a 1-0 lifetime record against Arizona State. Last year, the Gauchos blanked the Sun Devils in Santa Barbara, 3-0. UCSB and Arizona have never played.

On The Stumpf
Paul Stumpf is in his seventh season at UC Santa Barbara. He enters this week's action with a record of 70-45-11. His total of 68 wins ranks second on UCSB's all-time list. He has led the Gauchos to four consecutive seasons of double-figures in wins, the first time the program has accomplished the feat since 1988-91. Last season, he guided UCSB to a 13-6-2 record, the Big West regular season championship and to the Big West Tournament championship match. 2004 marked the fifth straight season in which the Gauchos finished at or over the .500 mark, a feat last accomplished more than a decade ago. In 1999, Stumpf's first season as the head coach at UCSB, he took a team that was selected to finish last in the conference, but instead posted an 8-9-1 overall record and a 5-4 mark in the Big West. Following the season, Stumpf was chosen as the Big West's Coach of the Year. Before arriving in Santa Barbara as an assistant coach in 1998, Stumpf spent two seasons as an assistant at Humboldt State. In addition, the San Diego native spent several years coaching club teams in the Santa Rosa area.

Offense Kicks Into Gear
The Gauchos got off to an uncharacteristically slow start on the offensive end of the field. Through its first four matches, UCSB had scored just two goals, both in a season-opening win at Fresno State. Following the two-goal performance at Fresno, the Gauchos were blanked in three straight. Just as, if not more, alarming than the lack of goals was that UCSB was getting few chances to score. In the first four matches, the Gaucho offense could muster just 21 shots, only six of which were actually shots on goal. In the last four matches, Santa Barbara has scored eight goals and taken 71 shots. So, since averaging 0.50 goals and 5.25 shots in the first four games, UCSB has upped its production in the last four to 2.00 goals and 17.75 shots per game in the last four. Finally, in the Sunday's win over George Washington, the Gauchos needed overtime to post a 1-0 win, but they outshot the Colonials by a 26-3 count. The 26 shots was a season-high.

Ives League
Freshman forward Genelle Ives (Dana Point, Calif./Dana Hills HS) has started to fill the vacuum left by the graduation of three-time Big West Offensive Player of the Year Jennifer Borcich. Ives started out on the right note with a goal in the season-opener at Fresno State and since she and the entire team went silent for three matches, she has gotten hot offensively. In her last four matches Ives has scored two goals and assisted on five others. In last week's wins over Hawaii and George Washington, she either scored or assisted on all four goals. Ives enters Friday's contest at Arizona State with the team-lead in goals (three), assists (five) and points (11).

Defenders Pick Things Up As Well
UCSB's offense has turned thing around in the last four matches, but the defense got a head start on the turnaround. Although the Gauchos dropped three straight matches prior to their four-match winning streak, the defense only struggled in the first of the three losses, a 4-0 defeat to Central Florida. In the next two losses, the defenders allowed just two goals and during in the four wins that followed opponents have scored just two goals, one of which was a penalty kick. Overall UCSB's goals against average is at 1.12, but in the last six matches it is a meager 0.66. The defense, incidentally, has had to overcome the loss of sophomore Jessie Steinberg, a starter all of last season, due to illness. Senior Katie Cooper (Claremont, Calif./Claremont HS) and sophomores Katie Dwyer (Orcutt, Calif./Righetti HS), Kandice Mclaughlin (West Hills, Calif./Michigan) and Katrina Wright (West Vancouver, B.C./UNLV) have led the way defensively.

The Bickford Files
Junior forward Chandi Bickford (Haiku, Maui, HI/King Kekaulike HS) made her return to action in Sunday's 1-0 overtime win over George Washington. Bickford, who led the Big West in assists last year with 11, entered the match in the first half and played about 50 minutes total. Coming off of a sprained knee, she looked a bit rusty, but for the most part it was a good first step. In the second half she made a handful of nice offensive runs, including one which resulted in a shot and a hit goalpost. As Bickford gets healthier, she and Ives should give UCSB a solid forward duo.

Soler Eclipse
Freshman goalkeeper Kelly Soler (Moraga, Calif./Campolindo HS) made the first start of her career against George Washington and although she didn't have to work too hard, she did not have a save, she did post her first career shutout. Soler has now played just over 110 total minutes in two matches and she has yet to allow a goal.

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