Women's Soccer All-Decade Team Announced

Women's Soccer All-Decade Team Announced

Dec. 19, 2009


To see the All-Decade women's volleyball team, click here

To see the All-Decade men's water polo team, click here

Chandi Bickford, 2003-06

Jen Borcich, 2001-04

Kristyn Bright, 2002-06

Jamie Considine, 2002-05

Katie Cooper, 2002-05

Darci Gwartz, 2003-06

Allie Kueny, 2003-06

Genelle Ives, 2005-09

April Loveland, 1997-2001

Rachael Ritchey, 2005-08

Krystal Sandza, 2001-03

Sarah Stoltz, 2006-09

Sami Svrcek, 2005-08

The conclusion of the first decade of the new millennium is just days away and to commemorate it, the UC Santa Barbara Athletics Department will take a look back and honor the athletes who have made the biggest impact on their respective teams over the past 10 years.

It has been a decade that saw a national championship, numerous Big West titles, All-Americans, Players of the Year, record-setting performances and far more victories than defeats.

In a retrospective look, the team sports at UCSB will release the All-Decade Teams - compiling the players who helped make those teams successful from 2000-09.

Sure, there are certain criteria for selecting the starting lineups of these teams. To be considered for the All-Decade Team in his or her sport, a student-athlete must have played the majority of their contests in the past 10 years; student-athletes who spent more time at UCSB to accomplish greater things typically will be given the edge over those who either left early or started late, but it won't rule transfer students or those who departed for professional careers out; while the players selected may have won more awards or had better statistics, the All-Decade Teams don't go solely by what happens between the lines or shows up in the box scores - intangibles play a large role; the idea of the All-Decade Team is to make the best starting lineup of the players who competed for UCSB from 2000-09.

The UCSB women's soccer team was in the upper-echelon of the Big West virtually the entire decade. The Gauchos produced numerous All-Big West players, several All-Region selections, and six Big West Offensive Players of the Year. The first 10 years of the millennium were capped by consecutive Big West championships and NCAA Tournament appearances.

UCSBgauchos.com had Head Coach Paul Stumpf, UCSB's coach for the entire decade, help us select the school's women's soccer All-Decade Team.

Here is the Gauchos All-Decade women's soccer team in alphabetical order:

Chandi Bickford, 2003-06, Forward
Although never selected to the All-Big West Conference team, Bickford was a standout, particularly in the final two years of her career. She hailed from a small high school in Maui and came to UCSB as an outstanding athlete, but it was as a Gaucho that she blossomed as an outstanding soccer player. Bickford completed her career with 10 goals and 20 assists. She led the conference in assists in 2005, her junior season.

"She caused trouble with her speed and she could really turn the corner on people," Stumpf said. "She had lots of assists and, as she got better as a player, made the players around her better. Chandi came from a very small school and grew as a player. She was very open to suggestion and willing to learn. We were very fortunate because she came to UCSB on a visit and the rest is history."

Jen Borcich, 2001-04, Forward
Borcich is unquestionably the best offensive player in Big West history. She was three-time Big West Offensive Player of the Year, a four-time First Team All-Big West selection, and a two-time All-Far West choice. Powerful, skilled, tough, and fast, Borcich competed her career ranked third in school history in goals (56), sixth in assists (26), and third in points (138). She is the league's all-time leading goal and point scorer. Borcich is also UCSB's all-time leader in games played with 80.

"When I thought about this team, she was one of the first two names that came to mind," Stumpf said. "She was a lock. Jen did it all for us. She was our team captain, was in the most fit player, worked the hardest, and she was a great teammate. In a word, she was a great player."

Kristyn Bright, 2002-06, Midfielder
Bright was a quiet force for the Gauchos. She was a four-year starter, although she redshirted one season with an injury. She finished her career with six goals and five assists for 17 points and was chosen All-Big West three times, including one First Team honor. Her 78 games played ranks fourth in school history.

"Kristyn was a force in the middle," Stumpf said. "But she was very unassuming about it and would never say that about herself. She was the glue for us. A consistent ball-winner and solid one-on-one defender, she was a swing-type midfielder and one of the best we've had."

Jamie Considine, 2002-05, Goalkeeper
A constant in goal for the Gauchos during her four years, Considine was a vocal and consistent leader on the backline. She completed her career among UCSB's all-time leaders in all key goalkeeper categories. Considine was second in shutouts with 26, third in saves with 293, and fifth in goals against average at 1.17.

"Jamie really spoiled us," Stumpf said. "We have not had anyone since her that was the same. She was a good leader, had good hands and she was a very positive force for us. After her career, she stayed with us for a couple of years as an assistant coach, again showing her leadership."

Katie Cooper, 2002-05, Defender
Cooper was a staple in the back for four seasons. She was twice a Second Team All-Big West selection and she earned Honorable Mention All-Big West once.

"She was one of the best traditional center backs in the program," Stumpf said. "She was athletic, technical and a hard tackler. Katie was tough for opponents to play against."

Darci Gwartz, 2003-06, Midfielder
Gwartz was a four-year starter in the midfield for the Gauchos. She played in 79 games during her career, second in school history, scoring seven goals and assisting on 12 others for 26 points. Gwartz was a three-time All-Big West choice, including one first team honor.

"Darci was a competitor," Stumpf said. "It didn't matter whether it was a game or a drill, she competed. More than almost anyone in the program, she hated to lose. Lose possession, lose a game, lose anything. She was solid all four years."

Allie Kueny, 2003-06, Utility
Kueny was Stumpf's go-to player at several spots during her career. She was just as comfortable playing up-front or in the midfield. Kueny completed her career with 18 goals and 18 assists for 54 points and she was named First Team All-Big West twice.

"On any given day she was our best player at any of three positions," Stumpf said. "She was willing, and able, to do it all for four years. Allie was one of our best soccer players and athletes."

Genelle Ives, 2005-09, Forward
Ives was one of the most athletic and fastest forwards that UCSB has had. She put defenses on their heels and created opportunities for her teammates. A Big West Offensive Player of the Year, Ives was named First Team All-Big West twice and Second Team All-Big West once. She was also an All-Region selection.

"Three of her four years she was the most talked about striker in the Big West," Stumpf said. "Everybody knew about her and yet she was still able to get it done. Genelle allowed us to stretch defenses and play underneath. She was a great athlete and a big reason why we went to the NCAA Tournament."

April Loveland, 1997-2001, Defender
Loveland was one of the most physical and toughest defenders over the last decade. She was a First Team All-Big West choice and the glue of the defense.

"April was not the most technical player, but she was tremendously effective," Stumpf said. "She was very physical, had a very good right foot and was able to release pressure for us. She was also one of the toughest right backs I've ever seen."

Rachael Ritchey, 2005-08, Defender
A pure, stay-at-home defender, Ritchey was the heart of the Gauchos' defense for nearly four years and it paid off in three First Team All-Big West awards.

"Rachael was a three-year starter and a two-year captain," Stumpf said. "She was, without question, one of the best center backs we've ever had. We never really knew what we had until she was gone. Rachael really held it together in the back. She was a great communicator and kept everyone on the same page."

Krystal Sandza, 2001-03, Midfielder
During her three seasons, Sandza proved to be one of the best players in the program's history. In those three years, she scored 43 goals and 16 assists for 102 points. Her 43 goals ranks her fourth in UCSB history. In 2002, Sandza scored 25 goals, the most by a Gaucho in the decade, and in a game at Air Force, she set a school record with five goals.

"Krystal was special," Stumpf said. "She scored 25 goals as a sophomore and she just had that special knack of scoring or assisting on goals that won games. She, quite simply, had a talent."

Sarah Stoltz, 2006-09, Midfielder
Stoltz was the calming force in the Gaucho midfield. She was one of the key players in helping lead UCSB back to the NCAA Tournament in 2008 and 2009. She completed her career with three goals and three assists.

"Sarah brought great composure to us," Stumpf said. "She had a calm about her that was very important to our success. She kept her head when others were losing theirs. She was very effective in crowds and had a lot of other skills that made her a great soccer player, but it was her sense of humor and her laugh that really had an impact on our team. She just had a way of making things better."

Sami Svrcek, 2005-08, Midfielder
One of the hardest workers in the program, Svrcek was a two-time First Team All-Big West choice. She was also, unquestionably, one of the finest defensive midfielders that the program has seen. Svrcek completed her career with three goals and 12 assists for 18 points.

"Her work rate was incredible," Stumpf said. "For a smallish player, Sami could go box-to-box with anyone. We matched her up with the best players from UCLA and Stanford and neither even got a shot on goal. Sami was also our captain and her leadership really helped get the program back to the NCAA Tournament."

In addition to the 13 players who comprise the UCSB women's soccer All-Decade Team, there were several others who deserve mention.

Forwards Randi Johns teamed with Borcich for two seasons after transferring from a community college. In her two seasons Johns scored eight goals and had 15 assists for 31 points. Another forward who contributed during that era and who deserves consideration, was Santa Barbara native Alma Martinez. A transfer from Santa Barbara City College, Martinez ultimately played for the Mexican National Team in the Olympic Games.

"Randi brought emotion to our games," Stumpf recalled. "Whenever we scored a goal, she would be leading the celebration. She was such a great teammate."

Left backs Molly Martin and Katrina Wright and center backs Kandice Mclaughlin and Katie Wilson also stand out.

"Molly and Katrina were so solid," Stumpf said. "They just came to play every game. Kandice and Katie were both overachievers. They had comparable ability and were both outstanding players for us."

Stumpf also recognized players from the current team, who if their careers were over, would deserve consideration. Among those players are Kailyn Kugler, Alexa Stringer, Jacqui Simon, Cory Yoshida, and Julia Speace.

To see pictures of the rest of the All-Decade Team, please continue to scroll down.