No. 5 UCSB Returns to Harder to Host Creighton and Davidson

Sept. 6, 2010

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• The Schedule
Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2010, 7 p.m.

UC Santa Barbara (0-1-1) vs. Creighton (2-0-0)
Series record vs. Jays: First Meeting
at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium
Game available on Gametracker
Broadcast Live by News Press Radio AM 1290

Friday, Sept. 10, 2010, 7 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (0-1-1) vs. Davidson (1-0-1)

Series record vs. Wildcats: First Meeting
at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium
Game available on Gametracker
Broadcast Live by News Press Radio AM 1290

• The Week Ahead
After officially opening the 2010 season with a pair of road matches last week, the fifth-ranked UC Santa Barbara men's soccer team will play its home-opener this Tuesday as the Gauchos host Creighton in a 7 p.m. match at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium. UCSB will remain at home for a Friday pairing with Davidson, also at 7 p.m. Both matches will mark the Gauchos' first meeting with their opposition.

• Listen Up!
If you are one of the Gaucho faithful that can't make it out to Harder Stadium on Tuesday or Friday, there is some good news for you. Both of this week's men's soccer matches are going to be broadcast live on KZSB AM 1290 News-Press radio and online at newspress.com. Longtime Gaucho sportscaster Gerry Fall will team with veteran News-Press sportswriter Mark Patton to call all of the action.

• Home Sweet Harder
UCSB holds a 229-119-40 (.642) all-time record at home and has gone 83-22-12 (.761) at Harder Stadium since Tim Vom Steeg took the program's reigns in 1999. In 2009, the Gauchos posted a 10-2-0 home mark. UCSB outscored its 2009 opposition 22-7 on Meredith Field and posted nine shutouts.

• For The Record
UCSB got out to a 0-1-1 start on the season after falling, 1-0, in overtime to Cal State Bakersfield last Wednesday and tying New Mexico, 1-1, in a double overtime contest on Saturday. This marks the first time since 2007 that the Gauchos have not opened a season with a win. Only two previous times in Tim Vom Steeg's tenure has UCSB failed to win its first two matches of the season: 2005 and 2007. The Gauchos began each of those campaigns with a loss and a tie, but then went on to post 13 wins both years and advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second and Third rounds, respectively.

• Working Overtime
Last week's games also mark the first time in the last two decades that the Gauchos have opened the year with consecutive overtime contests. Vom Steeg's teams have posted a 17-7-21 combined mark in overtime games and average four per season.

• Checking In On Creighton
Creighton, which plays in the Missouri Valley Conference, opened the season with wins over Loyola Chicago, 2-0, and UNC Greensboro, 4-0, last week. Ethan Finlay and Kris Clark lead the team with two goals apiece. The Jays made 17 NCAA Tournament appearances prior to 2009.

• The Dish On Davidson
Davidson, which plays in the Southern Conference, opened the season with a 6-1 win over Marist and a 2-2 double overtime tie with Bowling Green last week. The Wildcats are led by Yannick Pilgrim, who has posted six points (2 goals, 2 assists) and Mark Millard (2 goals, 1 assist). The program has made three NCAA Tournament appearances, the last was in 2003.

• Forward Thinking
Sophomore Sam Garza's first official goal as a Gaucho was a big one. The transfer from Denver scored in the 56th minute at New Mexico, tying the game at one-all. The forward led UCSB with seven of the team's 11 shots during the contest and was responsible for three of the four shots on-goal. For the week, he took nine shots with four on-frame.

• The Vom Steeg File
In his 12th year leading the Gauchos, head coach Tim Vom Steeg is the winningest coach in Big West history. Vom Steeg has posted a 157-62-23 record at the helm of UCSB and a 136-45-22 record since the program rejoined the Big West in 2001. Vom Steeg is also the winningest coach in UCSB men's soccer history and has turned the Gauchos into an annual national title contender. The 2004 and 2006 NSCAA National Coach of the Year, Vom Steeg guided the Gauchos to the NCAA title in 2006 and the championship game in 2004. He has guided UCSB to five Big West titles in the past eight years and eight consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament. He won Big West Conference Coach of the Year honors in 2004 and 2005 and has produced 15 All-Americans.

• Poll Position
With last week's loss and tie, UCSB dropped from fourth to eighth in the Top Drawer Soccer weekly poll. The NSCAA, Soccer America, College Soccer News and Soccer Times polls are released on Tuesday. In the preseason polls, UCSB was ranked fifth by Soccer America, sixth by College Soccer News, tied seventh with UCLA by Soccer Times and eighth by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. In the Big West Preseason Coaches Poll, the Gauchos were picked to repeat as the conference champions and received six of seven first place votes.

• Coming Soon
Following this week's home matches, UCSB will return to Albuquerque for the Lobo Classic hosted by New Mexico. The Gauchos will face Harvard, which was ranked 10th in the NSCAA Preseason Poll, on Friday, Sept. 17 and will take-on Buffalo on Sunday, Sept. 19.

• Smile for the Cameras
UCSB will once again play in a pair of televised games this season. The Gauchos will host nationally-ranked Duke on Oct. 15 in a Fox Soccer Channel game. Just 12 days later, the Fox cameras will return to the Central Coast to broadcast UCSB's match at Cal Poly. The Gauchos have posted a 6-1-3 record in games broadcast on TV and own a 4-1-0 record in Fox Soccer Channel games. Of UCSB's six wins on TV, five have been shutouts.

• Boxall and Hayden in the Running for Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
Senior captains Michael Boxall and Sam Hayden have recently been named as two of the 30 men's soccer candidates for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as a NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. UCSB was the only men's program to have two players named as candidates for the award and is the only Big West school represented.

• The Cup is Coming, The Cup is Coming!
UCSB is the proud host of the 2010 NCAA Men's College Cup which will take place Dec. 10 and 12 at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium. This marks the first time since the 2004 season that the Cup has been held on the West Coast. All-Session passes for the College Cup are currently available for purchase as a part of the 2010 soccer season ticket packages. Individual College Cup passes will be made available for purchase this Wednesday, Sept. 1.

If you would like to purchase your tickets for the 2010 soccer season, or for more information, please call (805) 893-UCSB, visit the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus or buy online by clicking here.

• Golden Scarf Ceremony Set for Sept. 24
This year's "Golden Scarf" ceremony will take place prior to the Gauchos' Sept. 24 match against UCLA. This year, four individuals will be awarded a Golden Scarf for their dedication, passion and commitment to UCSB, the sport of soccer and/or the community. Nominations are now being taken online for this year's honor and each person who submits a nomination will receive a pair of free tickets to a Big West Conference home soccer match of their choosing. To nominate someone that you feel is worthy of recognition, click here.

• Thank You Santa Barbara Airbus
UCSB Athletics would like to extend a special thank you to Santa Barbara Airbus, which is the official sponsor of Tuesday's game against Creighton.