Gauchos Travel to UC Davis For Big West North Battle

Gauchos Travel to UC Davis For Big West North Battle

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• The Schedule
Wednesday, Oct. 19 at 3:00 p.m. PDT
UC Santa Barbara vs. UC Davis (7-6-2, 3-3-0)
Aggie Soccer Field in Davis, Calif.
All-time record vs. the Aggies: 21-7-5
Record vs. UCD in Vom Steeg era: 17-5-3
Last meeting: UCSB 1-0 UCD (Big West Tourney Semi @ UCSB, Nov. 11, 2015)
2015 series: UCSB goes 3-0-0 vs. UCD
UCSB form: W W W T W
UCD form: W L W L W

Saturday, Oct. 22 at 8:00 p.m. PDT
UC Santa Barbara vs. Cal Poly (3-8-2, 1-4-1)
Harder Stadium
TV: Fox Sports Prime Ticket
All-time record vs. the Mustangs: 46-18-8
Record vs. CP in Vom Steeg era: 23-7-6
Last meeting: UCSB 2-1 CP (10/15/16 @ CP)
2015 series: UCSB goes 0-1-1 against CP
UCSB form: W W W T W
CP form: L T L W L

• Gauchos on the Air will carry a live audio broadcast of Wednesday's game at UC Davis, with Voice of the Gauchos Gerry Fall on the mic. A link to the radio broadcast can be found here or on the UCSB men's soccer schedule page

• Blue-Green Matchup Looming
After tomorrow's showdown with the Aggies, the Gauchos will return home to welcome Blue-Green rival Cal Poly for a FOX Sports Prime Ticket-televised showdown on Saturday night at 8:00 p.m. A big crowd is expected, so get your tickets today by calling 805-893-UCSB or clicking here

• Getting Hot
After a five-game slide in mid-September, it looks like UCSB is back on top of its game in conference play as the Gauchos take a six-game unbeaten streak into the week. That is the longest unbeaten streak for the program since 2013 (11 games), and this is just the second time in the past five years that UCSB has strung together multiple four-game unbeaten streaks in one season.

• Selemani Grabs Pair of Weekly Honors
After scoring in each of UCSB's games last week, forward Ahinga Selemani was named to the College Soccer News Team of the Week while repeating as the Big West Offensive Player of the Week. The Ann Arbor, Mich. native potted the opener just six minutes into the tilt with the Hornets, finishing off a deflected through ball from Nick DePuy. Then against the Mustangs, he took advantage of a failed clearance by snatching the ball from a trio of CP defenders before finishing low to the keeper's left for a 33rd minute equalizer, setting the stage for Kevin Feucht's 63 minute PK winner.

• Can't Be Stopped
With his performance last week, Selemani extended his goal-scoring streak to four games and brought his season total to six goals, both career bests. Selemani is the second Gaucho this year with a four-game goal streak (Feucht) and the third in the past two years (DePuy). His six goals rank fourth in the Big West Conference, and his three game-winners are tied for the league lead.

• Playoff Position
With a division-leading 14 points so far in conference play, UCSB is in strong position to return to the playoffs. which would make it 14 postseason appearances in the last 15 years. The Gauchos will clinch a spot in the Big West Tournament with their next victory and would put them in the driver's seat for a fourth straight Big West North title. A win on Wednesday would also put UCSB eight points clear of second place Davis with just three games remaining in the regular season.

• Antagonizing the Aggies
In recent history, UCSB has performed well against UC Davis, posting a strong .740 winning percentage against the Aggies in the Tim Vom Steeg era. The Gauchos have posted four consecutive wins on UC Davis, including three victories during the 2015 season. UCSB's last regulation loss at Aggie Soccer Field came back in 2012.

• Defending Their Crown
With 14 points out of their first six league games, UCSB is in a familiar place: at the top of the Big West North Division. So far in league play, UCSB has the best goal differential (+4) among North teams. The Gauchos have won three consecutive Big West North titles and have nine Big West regular season championships since 2002.

• Confident in Conference Play
UCSB has been dominant in conference play over the past three-plus seasons, accruing a 24-4-8 record  and taking home the regular season title each year. The Gauchos' 80 combined points in league play over that span are easily the most of any Big West school, with all other teams racking up between 34 and 52 points.

• Defense Improving
Though UCSB ranks middle of the pack with a 1.54 GAA for the season, the Gauchos have improved their defensive numbers in conference play, allowing only five goals for a 0.93 GAA that ranks second in the league. After the 2-1 win over Cal Poly, UCSB has now allowed one goal or fewer in a season-best five straight games.

• Feucht on a Roll
After a season-long streak of three games without a point, Kevin Feucht was able to get his name back on the scoresheet against Cal Poly, converting a second half PK for his ninth goal of the year. That figures ranks 11th in the nation and leads both the team and the Big West. His 20 points also leads all conference players, and he has recorded at least one point in nine of the team's 15 games. A strong defensive player as well, the box-to-box beast has been on the field for all but 35 of UCSB's 1,406 minutes of action this season (98%).

• DePuy in a Few
A 2015 All-American after leading the country with 15 regular season goals and eight game-winners, senior forward Nick DePuy was named to the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List before the season. DePuy leads the Big West this year with a 3.20 shots per game average, and he has notched five goals despite drawing heavy coverage to give him 30 for his career. That total ranks ninth all-time in Big West history while his 15 career game-winners rank first in UCSB lore and third in the Big West.

• Storming the South
Earlier this season, UCSB completed an undefeated run through the Big West South portion of its schedule. That should not come as news to Gaucho fans, as the blue-and-gold have accrued a 15-2-3 record against South opponents since the Big West switched to divisional play in 2012, the best inter-divisional record of any school in the league over that span.

• Offense Clicking
Through the first two months of the season, UCSB has proven itself as one of the more dynamic offensive units around, as the Gauchos have scored more goals (27), produced more assists (25), and totaled more points (79) than any other Big West team. UCSB also leads the conference with a 13.6 shot per game average.

• Big Three
UCSB's veteran core – forwards Nick DePuy, Ahinga Selemani, and mid Kevin Feucht – has accounted for 20 of the team's 27 goals this season (74%). A trio of UCSB newcomers account for six more (Daniel Amo, Noah Billingsley, Dalton Pando with two apiece) while senior midfielder Josue Espana has the final tally.

• Le Roux Putting in Work
Just a freshman, goalie Titouan Le Roux has had one of the heaviest workloads in Division I soccer, totaling 1405:54 minutes on the pitch, the third-highest figure in the country. The French national has been between the sticks for every minute of UCSB's season, and ranks second in the league with a 0.93 GAA in conference action.

• Quartet of Gauchos Named to Top Drawer Soccer Freshman Top-100
Four members of the UCSB soccer team were named to the midseason Top Drawer Soccer Freshman Top-100 on Oct. 17. Daniel Amo (No. 20) was the top-ranked Gaucho, followed by Noah Billingsley (No. 61), Titouan Le Roux (No. 81), and Mateo Restrepo Mejia (No. 91). UCSB was the only Big West team with a player on the list.

• RPI Report
In this week's RPI report, UCSB checked in at No. 80, tops in the Big West, while UC Davis came in at No. 95.

• Big West Respect
UCSB was selected unanimously to repeat as Big West North Division Champions and three Gauchos were named to the 11-man Preseason All-Conference Team when the league unveiled the results of the 2016 Preseason Coaches Poll. The Gauchos received all eight first place votes and totaled 32 points, more than any other Big West squad. Cal State Fullerton was tabbed to win the South Division.