Gauchos Open New Campaign With Westmont Exhibition

Gauchos Open New Campaign With Westmont Exhibition

• The Schedule
Saturday, August 20, 2016 at 7 p.m.
No. 13 UC Santa Barbara vs. Westmont
at Harder Stadium
Last meeting: W, 4-1 (Aug. 22, 2015)

• A New Season Starts on Saturday
The UCSB men's soccer team will open a new campaign this Saturday when they host crosstown rival Westmont in an annual exhibition for the Bryant & Sons Cup.

• Season Tickets Still Available
Season tickets for 2016 UCSB men's soccer, including exciting home matchups against UCLA, Cal, and Cal Poly, are now available! UCSB's annual scrimmage against Westmont on Aug. 20 will kick off an 11-game home schedule featuring some of the biggest names in west coast soccer like UCLA, Cal, UC Irvine, Cal Poly, and LMU. To reserve your tickets today, click here or call the UCSB Athletics Ticket Office at 805-893-UCSB (8272).

• Parking Changes for UCSB Soccer
UCSB soccer fans should be advised that due to construction, parking for all regular season games at Harder Stadium this season will be affected. With the temporary closure of Lot 38 adjacent to Harder Stadium, fans will be directed to instead park their vehicles at Lot 22 (structure adjacent to Thunderdome), Lot 25 (Student Health), and Lot 27 (main Thunderdome lot). Signage with directions to appropriate lots will be posted throughout campus on gamedays. 

• Last Time Out
UCSB bested the visiting Warriors 4-1 in last year's season-opening contest, with Nick DePuy and Kevin Feucht showing a preview of what was to come in the 2015 season. DePuy landed a brace in the contest while Feucht scored off a free kick to open his UCSB scoring account. 

• Big West Respect
UCSB was selected unanimously to repeat as Big West North Division Champions and three Gauchos were named to the 11-man Preseason All-Conference Team when the league unveiled the results of the 2016 Preseason Coaches Poll on Wednesday afternoon. The Gauchos received all eight first place votes and totaled 32 points, more than any other Big West squad. Cal State Fullerton was tabbed to win the South Division. DePuy, Feucht, and forward Ahinga Selemani placed on the Preseason All-Big West Team. 

• AYSO Skills Day Set for Sunday
For the seventh straight year, UCSB will host the AYSO Skills Day this Sunday, Aug. 21, the day after the season-opening match against Westmont. Stretching from 2:30-6:30 p.m. at Harder Stadium, the AYSO Skills Day is free to all AYSO affiliated players, coaches, and parents and will feature skill clinics with UCSB players and coaching clinics with UCSB coaches. Participating teams will be able to learn new skills and tricks, have fun with the Gauchos, and receive promotional items and autographs.

• DePuy's Preseason Publicity
It was a busy offseason for Nick DePuy, who garnered a number of preseason awards. The senior striker was named to the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List, received a College Soccer News Preseason All-America honor, was listed as the top "senior poised for a big year," and was named the 2015-16 UCSB Male Athlete of the Year on top of his selection to the Preseason All-Big West Team. DePuy led the NCAA last season with 15 regular season scores and eight game-winning goals, leading to First Team All-America and Big West Offensive Player of the Year honors.

• Lucky 13
UCSB was ranked No. 13 in the country in the NSCAA Preseason Coaches Poll, second-highest on the west coast behind top-ranked Stanford. The Gauchos were also tabbed No. 16 in the country by College Soccer News. 

• Schedule Breakdown
Tim Vom Steeg has constructed another tough schedule for the Gauchos this season. Key opponents coming to Harder Stadium include UCLA, Cal, UC Irvine, Cal Poly, and LMU. Top road foes include No. 2 Akron, Ohio State, Butler, and Oakland. In all, UCSB will face six opponents this season who participated in the 2015 NCAA Tournament, including two teams who made the Sweet 16 and one, Akron, who advanced all the way to the College Cup. 

• 2015 in Brief
UCSB recorded a 14-7-2 overall record last year, capturing the North Division and Big West regular season crowns with a 7-2-1 mark in league play. After the conference tournament, UCSB received the No. 15 national seed in the NCAA Tournament, earning a bye in the first round before dispatching South Carolina to advance to the seventh Sweet Sixteen in program history. There, the Gauchos battled valiantly against No. 2 Clemson, but ultimately fell 3-2. 

• Filling the House
UCSB drew a total of 46,132 fans (3,844 per game) to Harder Stadium last season to lead the NCAA in attendance for the ninth consecutive season.