Sept. 12, 2011
BERKELEY - The California women's soccer team made its season debut in the national rankings, checking in at No. 16 in the TopDrawerSoccer.com poll and at No. 25 in the Soccer America poll released Monday.
The Golden Bears have won their last six matches and are 6-1 overall on the season. Cal is coming off a 2-0 shutout at Long Beach State this past Friday. Following a season-opening loss to Pepperdine (2-1), the Bears have defeated San Diego State (2-1 in OT), North Dakota State (7-0), Hawaii (3-0), Kent State (5-1), Denver (4-2) and Long Beach State (2-0).
"It is nice for the players to have their efforts noticed but our only focus is winning our next game," said Cal head coach Neil McGuire.
Senior forward Katie Benz leads Cal in scoring with 21 points, including a team-best nine goals on the year. She has scored at least one goal in each contest during Cal's six-match winning streak. Sophomore goalkeeper Emily Kruger has started all seven matches between the posts for the Bears and owns a 0.95 goals-against average with a pair of shutouts on the year.
It is Cal's first appearance in the national rankings since Oct. 5 of last season when the Bears were ranked No. 16 by Soccer America, No. 20 by Soccer Times and No. 21 by the NSCAA. The latest NSCAA and Soccer Times national polls have not yet been released for this week.
Three Pac-12 teams earned a spot in the latest Soccer America national poll as Stanford held the top spot and UCLA checked in at No. 2 in the rankings. Five conference teams earned a spot in TopDrawerSoccer.com's top-64 poll, including Stanford (1), UCLA (3), the Bears (16), USC (30) and Oregon State (33).
Cal returns to action this Sunday when the Bears take on San Francisco on the road at Negoesco Stadium at 1 p.m.