Golden 1 UCSBgauchos.com Athlete of the Week - Nick Perera

Dec. 4, 2006

Santa Barbara, Calif. - Nick Perera scored a goal and assisted on another as the men's soccer team won its first national championship Sunday with a 2-1 victory over UCLA in St. Louis.

The sophomore forward from Madrid, Spain wasted no time getting the Gauchos on the board as he tallied the first goal of the match at the 2:12 mark of the opening half.

Perera, along with Bryan Byrne, then assisted on the eventual game-winning goal as he fed Eric Avila to put UCSB up 2-0 at 60:01.

Perera was named the College Cup Most Outstanding Offensive Player.

For the season, Perera totaled seven goals and four assists for 18 points, second on the team.

It was the second time in three seasons that UCSB advanced to the NCAA National Championship match. In 2004, the Gauchos lost to Indiana on penalty kicks in the title game.

The national crown was the second in UCSB's NCAA Division I history as the men's water polo squad won in 1979.