Feb. 27, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The defending national champion UC Santa Barbara men's soccer team has taken the first step towards returning to the College Cup for the third time in four years with the addition of midfielder Ciaran O'Brien, a sophomore transfer from the University of San Diego, to the roster in 2007.
A native of Tacoma, Wash. and the 2005 Washington State Gatorade Player of the Year, O'Brien is expected to help fill the void in the Gaucho midfield left by the departure of Tyler Rosenlund. The All-College Cup selection leaves UCSB for the professional ranks after scoring four goals and four assists in 17 games as a junior.
The most widely recruited transfer player in the nation, O'Brien comes to UCSB after a very successful freshman campaign with the Toreros. He appeared in a total of 19 games and started 14 for a San Diego team that finished with a 10-8-1 overall record last season and a 5-6-1 mark in West Coast Conference play. A NSCAA Freshman All-America, O'Brien was third on the squad with six goals and four assists for 16 points in 2006. He was also named to the All-WCC second team and earned co-freshman of the year honors for his performance at USD.
The 5' 9" midfielder was a four-year starter at Decatur High School, where he earned NSCAA high school All-American honors. O'Brien tallied 38 goals and 29 assists for the Gators and was an All-South Puget Sound League First Team selection all four years at DHS. He was named the league MVP as a sophomore and a senior.
"Ciaran is big time personality player that will be able to step right in and make a difference for us," head coach Tim Vom Steeg said. "He is very good at going forward and attacking from midfield and he is talented around the box, as well. We are very pleased Ciaran has decided to join our program and his addition will ensure that we will once again field one of the most talented midfields in the country."
O'Brien was also recruited by the University of Washington, Indiana, and Maryland before deciding to transfer to UCSB.