SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Saturday night's match between the UC Santa Barbara men's soccer team and Cal Poly was the highest attended match in NCAA soccer so far this season, with the final figure of 9,748 fans toppling the previous high of 5,942 (Notre Dame at Saint Louis, Aug. 31) by nearly 4,000.
The figure stands alone as the 28th-best attended match in NCAA soccer history.
Harder Stadium crowds are responsible for seven of the top ten NCAA attendances of all time, and nine of the top ten that were played in a collegiate stadium.
The Blue-Green rivalry between UCSB and Cal Poly regularly attracts the biggest crowds in college soccer, with that specific matchup, either in Santa Barbara or at Cal Poly, making up for 19 of the top 30 all-time highest-attended matchups.
Santa Barbara led the country in attendance for nine straight years from 2007 to 2015, with the program's best year coming in 2010 when over 70,000 fans were welcomed into Harder Stadium over the course of 12 home dates, resulting in an average of 5,873 fans per contest.
After seven home games this season, the Gauchos have enjoyed the support of a total of 21,915 fans. Their average of 3,131 fans per match is second only to Saint Louis, who has averaged 3,263 per game.
The match is not UCSB's only foray into the highest attended Division I games this season, either. The 3,812 in attendance against then-No. 1 Stanford on Sept. 28 ranks as the 12th largest crowd and the season opener against UNLV had the 35th-most fans at a game this season with 2,500 in attendance.