BERKELEY - After 11 days off, No. 12/17 California returns to the pitch for two crucial matches before the opening of Pac-12 play. The Golden Bears will face their biggest test yet this season with their first ranked opponent in Thursday’s 7 p.m. match vs. No. 22/13 Santa Clara at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. Video and live stats will be available on santaclarabroncos.com. The Blue & Gold return to Berkeley Sunday for a match vs. St. Mary’s at 11 a.m. in Edwards Stadium, televised live on the Pac-12 Networks. Live stats for the St. Mary’s game will be available on CalBears.com, and scoring updates for both games will be provided on Twitter via @CalWomensSoccer.
SCOUTING THE BRONCOS
MATCH 7: NO. 22/13 SANTA CLARA BRONCOS (4-2-0) Thursday, Sept. 19 |7 p.m. Buck Shaw Stadium | Santa Clara, Calif. Live Stats: santaclarabroncos.com Twitter Updates: @CalWomensSoccer
All-Time Series Record Total: 16-14-5 Home: 7-6-0 Away: 8-6-3 Neutral: 1-2-2 Last Meeting: 8/23/12, L 1-0
The Broncos are riding a four-game winning streak heading into a weekend where Santa Clara will face two ranked Bay Area rivals in Cal and Stanford. While this is Cal’s first test against a ranked opponent, Santa Clara has already faced three ranked opponents, losing to No. 1 North Carolina 2-0 and No. 8 Virginia 4-0 in opening weekend, and beating No. 16 Maryland 1-0 earlier this month. Senior F Morgan Marlborough and SR MF Julie Johnston lead the team with four goals, two assists and 10 points apiece, capped by Marlborough’s hat trick vs. Iowa State on Sept. 12, which garnered her West Coast Conference Player of the Week honors. Sophomore GK Andi Tostanoski holds down the net for the Broncos with six goals against and 26 saves.
SCOUTING THE GAELS
MATCH 8: ST. MARY’S GAELS (3-5-0) Sunday, Sept. 22 | 11 a.m. Goldman Field at Edwards Stadium | Berkeley TV: PAC-12 NETWORKS | Live Stats: CalBears.com Twitter Updates: @CalWomensSoccer
All-Time Series Record Total: 14-8-5 Home: 8-4-0 Away: 5-3-4 Neutral: 1-1-1 Last Meeting: 10/22/10, T 2-2 (2OT)
St. Mary’s is off to a 3-5 start after facing three ranked opponents in the first five matches. The Gaels dropped games to No. 11 San Diego Stat 1-0, No. 25 Denver 2-0 and No. 25 Marquette 3-0, along with a 2-0 loss to Colorado and most recently, a 2-0 loss to Lehigh. Senior Briana Campos paces the Gaels with three goals for six points, followed by SO Caroline Beaulne’s two goals and one assist for five points. Former Golden Bear Amanda Glass is also on St. Mary’s roster after transferring and has appeared in all eight matches. Freshman Kaeli Schmidt is the team’s leading goalie with 33 saves and 10 goals against for a 1.26 GAA and two shutouts.
POLL POSITION Following a bye week, the Golden Bears maintain a 5-0-1 record and are ranked in the current polls (for play through Sept. 15, 2013): NSCAA - 12, Soccer America - 17, TopDrawer - 18, Soccer Times - 16, BennetRank - 18 & CollegeSportsMadness - 15.
CHART TOPPERS The Golden Bears are led by sophomore Ifeoma Onumonu, who paces the team with 11 points from five goals and one assist. Senior Kory Lamet and sophomore Samantha Witteman lead the team in assists. Senior Emily Kruger has notched a total of 560 minutes in goal with 17 saves for an .810 save percentage and 0.64 goals against average.
LAST TIME OUT - HARVARD & UC DAVIS Cal posted two wins at the University of San Francisco Tournament, where the Bears beat Harvard 2-1 on Sept. 6 and shut out UC Davis 4-0 on Sept. 8 for a 5-0-1 unbeaten record and best six-game start since 2005. Against the Aggies, the Golden Bears scored three second-half goals within 10 minutes, and sophomore Ifeoma Onumonu scored a goal in each game while four other players also contributed goals.
ON THE HORIZON - BACK ON THE ROAD The Blue & Gold will spend a week away from the friendly confines of Goldman Field with the Pac-12 season opener vs. Utah on Friday, Sept. 27 at 6:30 p.m. PT followed by a non-conference match vs. San Francisco at Negoesco Stadium in San Francisco on Monday, Sept. 30 at 7 p.m.
CHANNEL SURFING This season, seven of Cal’s 20 games will be broadcast live on television. Six games will air on the Pac-12 Network: St. Mary’s (9/22), Arizona State (10/4), USC (10/11), UCLA (10/13), Oregon (10/28) and Stanford (11/6). The Nov. 3 game vs. Washington will be televised on ESPNU.
SOCIAL CIRCLES For the latest news on the Golden Bear women’s soccer team and a behind-the-scenes look at practices and games, visit the Bears on social media - on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CalWomensSocer and Twitter @CalWomensSoccer.