April 3, 2013
Sunday, April 7, at Oregon
12 p.m. PT - Cal (6-4, 3-0 MPSF) at Oregon (5-5, 0-1 MPSF)
Pape Field - Eugene, Ore.
Series Record: 6-7
Last Meeting: L, 14-11 (4/27/12 MPSF Tournament at Stanford)
Coverage: Live Video
Five MPSF Conference games remain on the slate for the California lacrosse team as the Golden Bears begin a stretch of three straight conference road games begins this week. Cal ventures north this week to face Oregon on Sunday, April 7, at noon in Eugene Ore. The Bears are currently tied for first with Denver in the MPSF.
A Look at the 2013 Golden Bears
The Bears have won their last six out of eight contests, including a decisive 19-2 victory over Stetson at Memorial Stadium in Cal's last game.
With five games remaining in the regular season, Cal is tied for first place in the MPSF with a perfect 3-0 conference record.
Scoring 18 goals against Saint Mary's and UC Davis, and 20 against Iona, Cal tallied 18 or more goals three consecutive times for the first time in school history. The last time the Bears notched 20 goals in a game was in the 2010 MPSF Tournament. In addition, Cal is 6-0 when scoring 10 or more goals this season.
The 2012 MPSF Player of the Year Megan Takacs is once again leading the charge for the Bears. Takacs is the team leader in points (34), goals (29) and draw controls (44). She scored four times at Fresno State, earning MPSF Offensive Player of the Week honors last week.
Junior Paige Gasparino has provided an offensive spark for the Bears this season, as well. She is second behind Takacs in shots with 60. She has tallied 23 points (17 goals, 6 assists) that ranks third on the team after Melissa Humphrey's 28 points (11 goals, 17 assists).
With her five assists against Stetson last Monday, freshman Lizz Lavie passed Humphrey for the team lead in assists with 18. Lavie also added a goal against the Hatters when she picked off a pass and immediately scored off of her own caused turnover.
The Bears are in the midst of a stretch of playing six of seven games on the road. The road tilt at Fresno State on March 19 started the section of the schedule. Following last Monday's victory at home over Stetson, Cal now heads back on the road for three straight conference road games at Oregon, USC and San Diego State.
Christman Enjoying Breakout Season
While Megan Takacs and Melissa Humphrey were tabbed as Cal's two big returning offensive weapons from 2012, Gaby Christman was somebody head coach Ginger Miles picked as a potential breakout player in 2013 after she was named to the MPSF All-Tournament team a year ago. This season, Christman has proved Miles' words to be true, as she is fourth on the team in points (14), second in goals (14) and third in draw controls (15). Christman has garnered her biggest games this season against conference foes. She scored five times against Saint Mary's and three times each against UC Davis and at Fresno State.
Score 10, Bears Win
Cal has played 10 games thus far in the 2013 season. When the Bears score 10 goals, they are a perfect 6-0. However, when the Bears are held to single-digit tallies, they are winless this season at 0-4. Among the six wins, four times Cal has reached the 18-goal plateau, garnering 18 goals twice (Saint Mary's and UC Davis), 19 goals vs. Stetson and 20 goals vs. Iona. Cal also notched 16 goals in a win at Fresno State and 12 when it was victorious at Fairfield. Three of the four Cal losses have come on the East Coast (James Madison, UMBC and Yale). The Bears will remain on the West Coast for the remainder of the campaign.
Oregon leads the all-time series by a slim margin of 7-6. The Ducks topped the Bears, 14-11, in the MPSF Tournament last year
The 5-5 Ducks have lost four of their last five. They host USC on Thursday night prior to meeting Cal on Sunday
Shannon Propst leads Oregon in points with 33 (14 goals, 19 assists), while Kate Cathell is the Ducks' leader in goals with 19
Carly O'Connell boasts 18 ground balls and 21 draw controls, and Nikki Puszcz has notched a team-high 25 draws and 14 ground balls
Goalie Salliebeth Finnegan boasts a save percentage of .397 and a GAA of 9.91 - 56 saves, 85 goals against
Takacs, Humphrey Climbing Cal's All-Time Charts
Megan Takacs and Melissa Humphrey were Cal's offensive leaders in 2012 and they're doing it again this year. After being held off the scoreboard in the first two games of the season, Takacs is now the team leader in points (34) and goals (29). She now boasts 125 career goals which ties for second on Cal's all-time career goals list, 20 goals away from first. Against Fresno State, Takacs posted 11 draw controls for the second time in her career. That total also is tied for the second-most draws in MPSF history. Humphrey is finding her name in the Cal record book in the assists categories. She now has 62 for her career which ranks third all-time at Cal, just one helper shy of second and 21 away from first. She recorded six against Saint Mary's and has tallied two in the last two games.
Gasparino Named MPSF Rookie of the Week
Brynn Gasparino was named the MPSF Rookie of the Week on March 18 after scoring six goals vs. Iona on March 13. It was Cal's first conference weekly honor of the season. Gasparino had a breakout game in Cal's victory against the Gaels. After Iona got on the scoreboard first, Gasparino rattled off four straight goals to give the Bears a 4-1 lead halfway through the first half. She would later add two more scores in the second half to give her six for the game on eight shots. The six goals tied her for second on Cal's single-game record list. She also added an assist, a ground ball and a draw control. Against Virginia Tech on March 16, Gasparino scored again, this time on a free position shot.
Takacs Named MPSF Offensive Player of the Week
Megan Takacs was named the MPSF Offensive Player of the Week on March 25 after scoring four goals and collecting 11 draw controls against Fresno State on March 19. Behind a strong game from Takacs, Cal defeated Fresno State, 16-8. Takacs notched four goals, and has now tallied 20 this season. In addition to her four goals, Takacs' 11 draw controls were huge for the Bears in maintaining possession. It was the second time in her career that she notched 11 draws in a single game (April 4, 2012, vs. UC Davis). The 11 draws also tied for second in the MPSF single-game record book.
This week's road tilt at Oregon is the start of a three-game MPSF road trip before having two home games to finish the regular season. Following this week's clash against the Ducks, the Bears venture to Southern California to face USC on Friday, April 12, at 3 p.m., and then at San Diego State on Sunday, April 14, at noon.
Head coach Casey Reid and Marissa O'Meally are blogging this year to give their fans some behind the scenes insight on the Cal lacrosse team. Miles' blog is called "Mondays With Miles" while the player blog is called "Roll on With Ris and Reid." Stay tuned to CalBears.com for new blog entries throughout the season.
Follow the Bears on Twitter; Like the Bears on Facebook
Looking for even more Cal lacrosse news? Join the Bears in their new territory - Facebook and Twitter. By liking Cal Lacrosse on Facebook, you can see photos, discuss the latest happenings with fellow fans and much more on the social networking site. Following @CalWLacrosse on Twitter means similar inside information, status updates of the Bears as well as up-to-date scoring information.
Like any of the pictures on CalBears.com? They are available for purchase! GoldenBearSports.com, the official photographer of the Cal Athletics Department, has game photos available for purchase on their Web site at GoldenBearSports.com. You can also follow @GBSports on Twitter or Like the GoldenBearSports page on Facebook to get instant notifications when new albums and galleries are posted to the website. Visit twitter.com/gbsports to follow.