Sept. 9, 2008
Complete Release in PDF Format
Friday, Sept. 12, 2008
Washington (2-2-0) at Portland (1-2-1) 8 p.m.
Merlo Field Portland, Ore.
Live TV - Fox Soccer Channel
Washington men's soccer will look to build upon its two-game winning streak when it travels to play Northwest rival, Portland, Friday, Sept. 12, at 8 p.m. The contest held at Merlo Field will be televised live to a national audience on the Fox Soccer Channel. The match marks the end of the Huskies' five-game season-opening road, but it will be their second trip down the I-5 corridor to the Rose City. UW played a pair of neutral site games at the Nike Portland Invitational to open the season, Aug. 29 and 31, but did not face the host Pilots. The Huskies will hope to have better luck after losing both games in that tournament. Already on the right track, UW is coming off a pair of victories over College of Charleston (4-1) and Furman (4-0) to win the Diadora/Spinx Invitational title last weekend.
Washington's match on Friday at Portland will be televised live on the Fox Soccer Channel which is available to Seattle area digital cable subscribers on Comcast channel 401. Live scoring of the contest will be available on GoHuskies.com as well. Portland's audio and video coverage can be accessed at PortlandPilots.com.
In the Rankings:
Washington is not ranked in either of the NSCAA or Soccer America polls this week. The Huskies are ranked 26th according to Top Drawer Soccer and received votes in this week's edition of the Soccer Times Top-25.
Scouting The Huskies:
What a difference a week made for Washington. After opening the season with a pair of 2-1 losses to Fairleigh Dickinson (Aug. 29) and then-No. 10 Virginia Tech (Aug. 31) at the Nike Portland Invitational, the Huskies made a complete turn-around erupting for eight goals in victories over College of Charleston (4-1) and Furman (4-0) to win the Diadora/Spinx Furman Invitational in Greenville, S.C., this past weekend. The Huskies swept top tournament honors with freshman forward Brent Richards earning Offensive MVP acclaim and senior midfielder George John earning the Defensive MVP award. Richards scored three of UW's eight goals including a pair in the 4-0 tournament finale win. John contributed on both sides of the ball, helping the defense allow just one goal in two matches while adding a goal and an assist against Furman. Freshmen Dylan Tucker-Gangnes and Casey McCool were also named to the All-Tournament team. After struggling to score goals in their first two games, the Huskies received offensive contributions from seven different players who recorded either a goal or an assist in the two matches in South Carolina. Richards has an early team lead in scoring with this three goals, while Tucker-Gangnes is second with five points on two goals and one assist. Junior midfielder Jo Jo Katz has four points on two goals. Goalkeepers Rylan Hawkins and Stephen Fung have split time manning the net with each starting and playing two matches. Each has one win and one loss under his belt, while Hawkins has tallied six saves and one shutout.
Richards Named To College Soccer News National Team of the Week:
Freshman forward Brent Richards became the first Husky to earn weekly national honors in 2008, being named to the College Soccer News National Team of the Week, the website announced Monday. Richards scored three goals in two games last weekend, including a pair in UW's 4-0 victory over Furman to lead the Huskies to the Diadora/Spinx Invitational title.
Wurzberger Nearing Another Milestone:
Husky head coach Dean Wurzberger needs just two more wins to reach 200 in his 17-year career at the helm of the UW men's soccer program. His overall record as UW head coach stands at 198-93-32. Wurzberger already achieved the 200-career mark last season. Wurzberger was the head coach at Sacramento State for one season (1985) before taking over the reins at Washington. His career record stands at 206-101-37. Under Wurzberger's guidance, the Huskies have reached the NCAA Tournament 12 times, including 11 appearances in the last 13 seasons.
Quick Out of the Gates:
Win or lose so far this season, Washington has not wasted a moment getting on the scoreboard. In each of their four matches, the Huskies have scored a goal in the first 12 minutes of the game or less. UW scored 46 seconds into their opener with Fairleigh Dickinson, at the 2:23 mark versus Virginia Tech, at 11:35 versus College of Charleston and at 8:50 in the contest at Furman.
The eight goals the Huskies scored in back-to-back games last weekend mark the most since UW scored nine goals in consecutive matches to open the 2006 season versus UC Davis (5-0, Aug. 25) and Air Force (4-1, Sept. 1). The eight goals were the most scored by a UW team during a weekend series since 1998. That year, Washington netted 13 goals in contests with UC Santa Barbara (9-1) and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (4-0).
Spreading the Wealth:
In Washington's four games, eight different players have contributed either a goal or an assist. In the Huskies' weekend sweep of Charleston and Furman, seven different players recorded a point with six scoring at least one goal.
The Pilots are riding a bit of a two-game losing streak, dropping a pair of matches last weekend to nationally-ranked foes Creighton (0-3) and Saint Louis (1-5) at the Creighton Invitational in Omaha, Neb. Portland opened the season at its own tournament with a 2-2 draw versus then-No. 10 Virginia Tech and a 4-0 victory over Fairleigh Dickinson. Sophomore midfielder/forward Frankie Lopez leads the squad with nine points on four goals and one assist. Sophomore goalkeeper Austin Guerrero has logged 372:32 minutes in goal, making 14 saves and allowing 10 goals.
All-Time Series With Portland:
The last time these teams met, the Huskies ended the Pilots' season with a 1-0 victory in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament in Seattle, Nov. 23. Then-senior forward Ely Allen connected on a penalty kick in the 86th minute to send the Huskies to the second-round. UW swept both meetings last year (including a 1-0 regular season win in Seattle, Sept. 18) after losing the previous four straight games from 2004-06. The Huskies lead the all-time series 25-16-3 and are 13-9-1 on Portland's home pitch.
Early Pac-10 Leaders:
Washington is tied for the league lead in goals (10) with California, is second in points (26), tied for second with UCLA in assists per game (1.5) and is second in corners (25). UW freshman Brent Richards leads the Pac-10 in shots (15) and is tied for the lead in goals (three). He is also tied for second in points (six). Washington is tied for 19th in the country in scoring offense with 2.5 goals per game.
John Named To Hermann Trophy Watch List:
Senior midfielder George John was one of 48 Division I men's soccer players named to the 2008 Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy Watch List, the National Soccer Coaches Association of America announced Aug. 19. The Hermann Trophy is considered soccer's top collegiate individual honor. A two-year co-captain for Washington, John is a two-time NSCAA All-Far West Region and two-time All-Pac-10 honoree. He was a first-team All-Pac-10 team member in 2007, helping the Huskies to their second-straight trip to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. John has also excelled in the classroom, earning NSCAA Scholar All-American status last year and is a two-time Pac-10 all-academic selection. The recipients of the MAC Hermann Trophy are selected by Division I head coaches who are current members of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. A list of 15 semifinalists is selected by a coaches committee in November with three finalists announced in early December. They will be invited to the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis, Mo., for a news conference on Jan. 9, 2009, where the winner will be announced, with a presentation banquet following. John is the second-straight Husky named to the list as forward Kevin Forrest was tabbed as a preseason candidate last season. Husky standout C.J. Klaas was a semifinalist for the award in 2003 and 2004.
Huskies Projected To Finish Fourth In Pac-10 Coaches' Poll:
Washington was predicted to finish fourth in this season's Pac-10 standings according to a vote of the league's coaches the conference office announced, Aug. 13. California, coming off back-to-back Pac-10 championships, was picked to win a third-straight crown, followed by UCLA, Stanford, the Huskies, San Diego State and Oregon State. Cal received four first-place votes with the other two going to UCLA and Stanford. Washington was one of three Pac-10 squads to earn a spot in last year's NCAA Men's Soccer Championship, advancing as far as the second round for the second-straight season. The Huskies compiled an overall record of 9-8-4 and finished fifth in the league with a 3-4-3 tally.
The Washington men's soccer incoming recruiting class was ranked 32nd in the nation according to CollegeSoccerNews.com, the website announced. The Huskies' incoming freshmen group includes goalkeeper Brooks Hopp from Seattle who was tabbed one of "100 Freshmen To Keep an Eye On" this season by CSN. Headlining the class is also Brent Richards, a forward from Camas who was named the 2008 Gatorade State Player of the Year for Washington. Additional freshmen who could make an impact on the squad right away include midfielders Casey McCool from Bend, Ore., and Dylan Tucker-Gangnes from Bainbridge Island, Wash. Two other Pac-10 squads joined Washington in the CSN rankings with UCLA at No. 8 and California at No. 20.
2007 Season Review:
In 2007, Washington finished the season with a 9-8-4 overall record and placed fifth in the Pac-10 (3-4-3). The Huskies earned an NCAA Tournament berth for the 11th time in 13 years and advanced as far as the second round for the second-straight season. UW downed Portland 1-0 in a first-round match in Seattle, the gamewinner coming from an Ely Allen penalty kick. The Huskies traveled to Southern California to face the defending champs UC Santa Barbara, falling for the second-straight year by a one-goal deficit (1-0). Season highlights included UW notching the program's 500th all-time victory and head coach Dean Wurzberger winning his 200th career game. For the second-straight season, a Husky was tabbed Pac-10 Player of the Year - an honor going to Allen who shared the award with Cal's Andrew Jacobson. Allen was also named to the All-Pac-10 first-team, was a College Soccer News second-team All-American and earned NSCAA All-Far West Region honors. George John was also named to the All-Far West Region team. Washington's great tradition of sending players to the professional ranks continued with Ely Allen being selected in the second round of the MLS SuperDraft by the L.A. Galaxy. Kevin Forrest, whose senior year was cut short due to injury, was picked up by Colorado in the MLS Supplemental Draft.
Head Coach Dean Wurzberger:
Husky coach Dean Wurzberger is in his 17th year at the helm of the Washington men's soccer program. The 2004 Pac-10 Co-Coach of the Year and the all-time winningest coach in program history, Wurzberger has spent nearly two decades building the Husky program into one of the nation's finest, fielding teams that annually compete for conference and national championships. Under his tutelage, the Huskies have reached the NCAA Tournament 11 times in the last 13 years, including a school-record Sweet 16 trip in 2003. His record at Washington seasons stands at a stellar 198-93-32 (.663).
Tickets for all Husky home matches are on sale now either online at gohuskies.com or by calling the Husky Ticket Office at 206-543-2200. Tickets may also be purchased at the field on game day. Individual tickets prices are $6 for adults, $4 for children/seniors and $3 for groups of 15 or more purchased in advance.
Washington will make its home debut hosting the Husky Fever Classic, Friday, Sept. 19, and Sunday, Sept. 21. Rounding out the four-team field will be Portland, New Mexico and Cal State Fullerton. UW will face Cal State Fullerton on Sept. 19, at 7 p.m. and New Mexico on Sept. 21, at 1:30 p.m.