Cal Claims No. 2 Spot in Pac-12 Poll
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  08/14/2012

Aug. 14, 2012

BERKELEY - California earned the No. 2 position in the Pac-12 Men's Soccer Coaches Poll, the conference announced Tuesday. The Golden Bears garnered 18 points and one first-place vote, while defending Pac-12 champion and national runner-up UCLA (24 points, 4 first-place votes) took the top spot in the voting among the six conference head coaches.

Washington received the other first-place vote along with 17 points to rank third, Stanford (14 points) was fourth, San Diego State (11) placed fifth and Oregon State (6) was sixth.

Cal (3-9-5 overall record, 0-7-3 in the Pac-12) finished sixth in the inaugural season of the Pac-12. The Bruins - ranked No. 2 in this year's National Soccer Coaches Association of America preseason poll - claimed the 2011 Pac-12 crown a year after Bears won the Pac-10 title

Head coach Kevin Grimes brings a talented squad back to Goldman Field at Edwards Stadium, including All-Pac-12 First-Team defender and Cal co-captain Steve Birnbaum, All-Pac-12 midfielder and co-captain Tony Salciccia and 2012 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year Seth Casiple. A midfielder, Casiple led the conference for much of last season in assists and wound up with a team-high six.

Senior forward John Fitzpatrick led Cal with five goals and 11 points in 2011, when goalkeepers Robby Gogatz (1.63 goals-against average) and Kevin Peach (1.34 GAA) shared time in goal.

The Bears open the season on Aug. 24 at 7 p.m. at Santa Clara. They host their first home game against Central Florida on Sept. 7. The match against UCF - slated for a 4:30 p.m. start - also marks Cal's first of eight appearances on the Pac-12 Networks.

2012 Pac-12 Men's Soccer Coaches Poll

Rank/Team	        Points
1. UCLA (4)	        24

2. California (1) 18

3. Washington (1) 17

4. Stanford 14

5. San Diego State 11

6. Oregon State 6

First-place votes in parentheses