Oct. 7, 1997
Bears (5-4-1) Ready for Pac-10 Play
THIS WEEK: Friday 0ct. 10 UCLA, Berkeley, CA - Witter Field 4:00 p.m. Sunday Oct. 12 USC, Berkeley, CA - Witter Field 1:00 p.m.
ON TAP: The Cal women's soccer team, winners of two straight, opens Pacific-10 Conference play this week as the Bears host 11th-ranked (Soccer News) UCLA (8-2-0) on Friday, Oct. 12, and No. 25 (SoccerBuzz) USC (9-1-1) on Sunday, Oct. 12.
ABOUT THE OPPONENTS: Friday's match versus No. 11 UCLA will be the fourth meeting between the Bears and Bruins with Cal holding a 2-1 series advantage. Last year, Amy Balavac (San Jose) netted two goals as Cal defeated the then 17th-ranked Bruins in Berkeley, 2-1 in overtime. UCLA, which last year posted a record of 11-7-1, (4-3 Pac-10, t-4th place) has split its last four matches and has cooled significantly since opening the season with six straight victories. Sunday, Cal will take on the Trojans of USC. One of the most improved teams in the Pac-10, the Trojans are off to their best start ever at 9-1-1. The two teams have met only twice with the Bears winning both matches, including last year's in Los Angeles, 1-0.
REWIND: Last week, Courtney Carroll (Fremont) scored in the second half and Stacey Mallison (Los Gatos) netted the game-winner in overtime as Cal defeated Cal Poly SLO, 2-1, in an important regional contest played in San Luis Obispo. The Bears fell behind early as Cal Poly netted the game's opening goal only 18-minutes into the match. But Cal roared back, winning in overtime for the first time in three tries this season. (Cal lost its first game of the season in overtime, 2-1, to Northwestern and tied San Diego, 2-2, in its other overtime match on Sept. 5). The Bears outshot the Mustangs, 16-9, for the match. In fact, Cal held Cal Poly without a shot during the entire 12 minutes of overtime.
BIEFELD RETURNS TO BERKELEY: UCLA head coach, Joy Biefeld-Fawcett returns to Berkeley to lead the 11th-ranked Bruins versus her alma mater, Cal, on Friday, Oct. 10. Biefeld-Fawcett, who played at Cal from 1986-89, is perhaps the best women's soccer player ever to don the Cal blue and gold. A three-time All-American, she is the Bears all-time leading scorer having recorded 133 points on 55 goals and 23 assists. She also led Cal to a 62-12-4 (.838) overall record as the Bears made three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, including two Final Fours (1987 and '88), during her collegiate career. Following graduation, Biefeld-Fawcett played for the U.S. National team, helping the squad to a world championship and an Olympic gold metal. For her outstanding contributions to Cal soccer, Biefeld-Fawcett will be inducted into the Cal Hall of Fame at the annual banquet, which is also scheduled to be held Friday evening.
CARROLL HEATING UP: Senior forward Courtney Carroll seems to be heating up as Cal hits the mid point of the '97 season. Carroll scored a goal for the second consecutive game when she found the net at the 76-minute mark against Cal Poly last Friday. Later, in sudden-death overtime, Carroll assisted on Stacey Mallison's game-winner as the Bears pulled out an important regional road victory. Carroll now has registered eight points on three goals and two assists on the season and is on pace to surpass last year's total of 11 points (three goals and five assists).
FRESHMAN CLASS CONTRIBUTIONS: Freshmen Natalie Stuhlmueller (Los Gatos), Gretchen Vanderlip (Clayton Valley), Maresa Zanneti (Laguna Niguel) and Miren Zabala (Boise, ID) continue to play increasingly important roles as the 1997 season unfolds. Zabala has started three consecutive matches and has a 0.83 goals against average. Zanneti seems to have won a starting job along the back line, having started four of Cal's last six matches. Vanderlip has been a key off the bench, appearing in all 10 matches and leading the Bears in assists with three. Stuhlmueller has started 6-of-10 matches in the midfield and ranks fourth on the team in scoring with six points on two goals and two assists.
BEAR NOTES: The Cal offense continues to be balanced this season with eight Bears having tallied at least one goal ... in Friday's win over Cal Poly, the Bears outshot the Mustangs, 16-9, and upped their lead in shots taken in all games to 141-115. It was the seventh time in 10 games that Cal has outshot an opponent ... the Bears also took five more corner kicks than the Mustangs, 6-1. Cal has now taken 15 more corner kicks than its opponents, 53 compared to 38.
HEAD COACH KEVIN BOYD: The 1997 season is head coach Kevin Boyd's first at the controls of the Cal women's soccer program. Named Cal's seventh head coach on May 20, Boyd spent last season as the Bears assistant coach. He helped guide the Bears to their best record of the '90s in terms of wins --13-3-2 overall (5-2 Pac-10, second place). He is aided by two former Golden Bears: assistant coach Katharin Roth (Cal '86) and goalkeeper coach Duncan Lyons (Cal '89), who played for the men's soccer program during the 1988 and '89 seasons.