2006 Gauchos Debut Saturday at Home With Exhibition Contest Against Cal State Dominguez Hills

2006 Gauchos Debut Saturday at Home With Exhibition Contest Against Cal State Dominguez Hills

Aug. 18, 2006

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The Schedule
Exhibition Match
Saturday, August 19, 2006 at 5:30 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Cal State Dominguez Hills Toros
at UCSB's Harder Stadium

Match No. 1
Friday, August 25, 2006 at 3:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at No. 17 USC Trojans
at USC's McAlister Field

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara ended the 2005 season with an overall record of 9-10-0 and a Big West mark of 3-4-0. The Gauchos finished fifth in the conference and, for the first time since its inception, did not advance to the league's postseason tournament. In fact, 2005 marked the first time since 1999 that UCSB finished the year with a record below the .500 mark.

This Week
On Saturday, Aug. 19, UCSB will host Cal State Dominguez Hills, an NCAA Division II opponent. The Gauchos and Toros have actually played 15 times with UCSB holding a 13-1-1 record. The last time the teams met was in 1995. Saturday's match, which will begin at 5:30 is an exhibition and will be followed by a UCSB men's soccer exhibition match against local rival Westmont College.

On The Stumpf
Paul Stumpf is in his eighth season as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara. He enters this week's action with a record of 74-52-11. His total of 74 wins ranks second on UCSB's all-time list. Prior to last season, he had led the Gauchos to four consecutive seasons of double-figures in wins, the first time the program had accomplished the feat since 1988-91. Last season, he guided a young and injury-riddled UCSB team to a 9-10-0 record. Prior to the 2005 campaign, Stumpf had coached the Gauchos to five straight seasons of .500 or better, a feat that had last been accomplished more than a decade ago. In 1999, Stumpf's first season as the head coach at UCSB, he took a team that was selected to finish last in the conference, but instead posted an 8-9-1 overall record and a 5-4 mark in the Big West. Following the season, he was chosen as the Big West's Coach of the Year. Before arriving in Santa Barbara as an assistant coach in 1998, Stumpf spent two seasons as an assistant at Humboldt State. In addition, the San Diego native spent several years coaching club teams in the Santa Rosa area.

UCSB Selected Third In Big West Coaches Poll
UCSB was picked to finish third in the annual preseason poll by the Big West coaches. Although they did not receive any first-place votes, the Gauchos totaled 42 points, one point more than Cal Poly. Long Beach State, which enters the season ranked nationally, was picked to win the regular season title with 56 points and three first-place votes. Cal State Fullerton, the defending regular season and tournament champion, was picked second with 48 points and two first-place votes. Cal Poly also received a pair of first-place votes but still finished in fourth-place behind UCSB. Pacific was picked fifth with 35 points, but the Tigers also earned one first-place vote.

2006 Big West Coaches      Poll
1. Long Beach State (3)	   56
2. Cal State Fullerton (2) 48
3. UC Santa Barbara 	   42
4. Cal Poly (2)		   41
5. Pacific (1)		   35
6. UC Riverside 	   34
7. Cal State Northridge	   20
8. UC Irvine		   12

What A Difference A Year Makes
In 2005, UCSB entered the season with a roster that was dominated by newcomers. In 2006, the opposite is true. Last year the Gauchos had 18 newcomers on a roster of 30, this year they have just nine, two of whom are juniors and one of those was in Santa Barbara for the 2006 spring quarter. Although the roster has nine new names, UCSB has just four seniors.

Ives League
UCSB's top returnee is sophomore forward Genelle Ives. The Big West Conference's co-Freshman of the Year and a second team all-league selection, Ives paced the 2005 Gauchos in goals with six and points with 18. She was also second on the team in assists with six. Ives team-leading total of six goals was double the total of the next closest player, Allie Kueny, who finished the season with three.

More Forward Thinking
While the numbers say that Ives is UCSB's top offensive returnee, she will by no means be lonesome on the frontline. Although Allie Kueny (three goals, nine assists, 15 points) suffered a knee injury during the summer, the Gaucho coaching staff was still hopeful that she can return this season. In addition to Kueny, Santa Barbara returns senior Chandi Bickford. Last season injuries limited Bickford to just seven matches, but as a sophomore in 2004 she had three goals and a team-leading 10 assists for 16 points. Arguably the best all-around athlete on the team, Bickford is expected back at full-strength in 2006. Joining the group of returnees up front will be Heather Young, a talented transfer from Ohio State. Like Bickford, Young is a very good athlete and whatever trio gets the bulk of the playing time, the Gauchos should be more dangerous up front in 2006 than in 2005.

Have I Seen You Before?,
Not only do the Gauchos return several players who were regular starters in 2005, they also return a pair of players who were starters in 2004 but sat out the 2005 campaign. Senior midfielder Kristyn Bright and sophomore defender Jessie Steinberg are likely to contend for starting spots that they each held during the 2004 season. Bright, who was First Team All-Big West in 2003 and Second Team in 2004, will pair with senior Darci Gwartz to give the Gauchos a veteran tandem in the midfield. She has played in 62 matches at UCSB, starting 60. Steinberg actually played in a trio of contests before redshirting in 2005. As a freshman in 2004, she played in all 21 matches, starting 20.

Setting New Goals
Jamie Considine was a four-year starter at goalkeeper for UCSB. In 2006, the Gauchos will sport a new look at the position. Considine has become part of the team's coaching staff and there are three candidates to take over the starting role. Junior Katie Wright, a transfer from Nebraska, is tall (5-foot-10) and athletic. As a sophomore in Lincoln, she played every minute of all 23 matches and paced the Cornhuskers to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Wright was injured early in 2005 and was awarded a medical redshirt year. Freshman Tammy Lenham also has good size (5-foot-9) and athleticism and she will challenge for the job. Redshirt freshman Austen Everett, also 5-foot-9, could see action as well.

In The Middle
In addition to Kristyn Bright, who returns in the midfield after missing all of 2005 with a knee injury, UCSB has several other midfield returnees. Senior Darci Gwartz, an Honorable Mention All-Big West choice last year, is back in 2006. She has started 38 of a possible 40 matches the last two seasons and over that span she has four goals and six assists. Junior Kathleen Prieto, limited to seven matches as a defender last season, has made the move to outside midfielder in 2006. She has one of the most powerful legs on the team and could become a key offensive weapon. Sophomore Linda Allen, who made 14 starts in 2005, will again compete for a starting job. A pair of talented freshmen, Erin Doherty (Lakewood, Calif./Wilson HS) and Sarah Stoltz (Ojai, Calif./Nordhoff HS), will also vie for minutes in the middle.

In Defense Of The Gauchos
UCSB will have a very good deal of depth and talent at defender in 2006. The Gauchos return three of the four players who finished the 2005 season as starters and Steinberg, a full-time starter in 2004. Katie Dwyer, who started all 19 games last season, Kandice Mclaughlin, who started 17 and Katrina Wright, who started 13, could each return to the starting lineup. Rachael Ritchey, who played in 12 matches in 2005 and had an outstanding spring, will also battle for a key role on defense.