UCSB Opens 2012 Campaign at LMU

Peter Schmetz (By Adam Caira)
Peter Schmetz (By Adam Caira)

Weekly Release No. 1

• The Schedule 

Sunday, August 26, 2012 at 3 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara at Loyola Marymount
at Sullivan Field
All-time record vs. Lions: 17-12-2
Last meeting: L, 2-1 (Sept. 13, 2009)
Last win vs. Lions: W, 3-1 (Sept. 7, 2008)
Audio Broadcast • Live stats 

• And We're Off!
UCSB will head to Loyola Marymount on Sunday to play in its official 2012 season opener against the Lions. The match will be the first since 2009 against LMU. Gerry Fall, the Voice of the Gauchos, will be on-hand to provide a free audio broadcast live on UCSBgauchos.com.  

• Preseason Predictions
UCSB has been tabbed as both a top contender for the 2012 Big West crown as well as the NCAA title in a bevy of preseason polls that have been released over the past couple of weeks. The Gauchos were a unanimous pick – receiving all eight first place votes – to win the North Division of the Big West. UCSB is also a consensus top-11 team in five preseason national polls. Soccer America has given the Gauchos their highest ranking at No. 4, College Soccer News and College Sports Madness both have UCSB at No. 9, TopDrawerSoccer.com has bestowed a No. 10 ranking and the NSCAA poll has the team as No. 11. 

• Honor Roll
Three UCSB players have garnered preseason All-Big West distinction: senior midfielder Machael David, senior defender Peter McGlynn and senior forward Dion Acoff. Both David and McGlynn were 2010 All-Big West picks and both are returning to the field after injury-plagued 2011 seasons. Acoff, a transfer from Creighton and three-time All-Missouri Valley Conference player, has also been named a Preseason All-American by Soccer America.  

• 2011 In Review
In 2011, UCSB posted a 15-7-1 overall record, competed for the Big West Conference title and qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the 10th consecutive year, eventually advancing to the round of 16. Six Gauchos garnered All-Big West honors, including 2012 returners Dom Sarle, Josue Madueno and Peter Schmetz

• New Year, New Faces 
After the departure of five of last season's starters, including the scorers of 39 of the team's 51 goals in 2011, head coach Tim Vom Steeg and staff were faced with the task of reloading the roster. Many of the expected contributors this season are new to the program. Among the new additions are eight upperclassman transfers and three freshmen, including the 2012 Gatorade Player of the Year, Ema Boateng. The Gaucho newcomers were on full display in last week's 3-0 exhibition win over Westmont as juniors Goffin Boyoko and Achille Campion each scored and Boateng posted an assist. 

• The Veterans
In addition to the bevy of newbies, UCSB has several talented and battle-tested returning starters, including seniors André Grandt, Peter McGlynn, Machael David, Nic Ryan and Josue Madueno and juniors Peter Schmetz and Mathew Glodack

• Lights, Cameras, Gauchos!
UCSB will once again host a pair of matches that will be broadcast live by FOX Soccer as the NSCAA's College Game of the Week. The Gauchos can be watched on televisions nationwide on Sept. 21 when they host UCLA in a 6 p.m. pairing and again on Oct. 19 when Cal Poly comes to town for a 7 p.m. match-up. 

• Helping Hands
UCSB soccer will participate in its third annual AYSO Skills day this Saturday, Aug. 25 at Storke Field. The Gaucho men's and women's soccer teams will help local AYSO teams kick-off their new seasons with this exciting event. The day will include skill clinics and the opportunity for AYSO players to meet and play with the Gauchos. It will also serve as an opportunity for AYSO players to pick up their team jerseys and to register to play during halftime or serve as a ball kid at a UCSB soccer match. All of the clinics being offered are free to participants. The day will start with a player's clinic for U5-U8 players from 9-11 a.m. A coaches' clinic will follow for coaches of all levels at 11 a.m. A second player's clinic for the U10-U19 age groups will run from 12-2 p.m. For more information on this event, click here

• Get Your Tickets! 
The Gauchos will return home on Sept. 7 to host Valparaiso at 7:30 p.m. at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium. To ensure that you don't miss a minute of the 2012 campaign, purchase your season tickets now. The popular Family Plan includes five tickets for just $178. This year, the plan will also serve as a Flex Plan with either two season passes and three GKids memberships or five tickets – it's your call! GKids remains the best value in town for kids with access to every regular season game in every sport while wearing your GKids t-shirt. Call (805) 893-UCSB or click here to purchase your season tickets.