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Men's Soccer 12th In Soccer America Poll

Sept. 10, 2007

SPOKANE, Wash. - Back-to-back wins over nationally ranked opponents has caught the eye of the pollsters and vaulted Gonzaga University's men's soccer team into the national polls.

The Bulldogs are ranked 12th in the Soccer America rankings and 21st by College Soccer News as the first of the four major polls were released Monday. The SoocerTimes.com and National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/adidas polls will not be out until Tuesday.

The Bulldogs defeated previously top-ranked and defending national champion UC Santa Barbara 1-0 on the road the first weekend of the season, then came home last Friday to down the University of Washington, ranked as high as 15th, 2-1 for the Bulldogs inaugural win over the Huskies in 20 tries. Gonzaga is 2-1-0 this season heading to Milwaukee, Wisc., this weekend for the Panther Invitational. Friday Gonzaga will meet the University of Wisconsin, 20th in Soccer America this week, and the host University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Sunday.

This week's rankings mark Gonzaga's first appearance in the poll since Oct. 16, 2001, when the Bulldogs were 16th in Soccer America.

"This is great for the program and shows the dedication our players have put forth," head coach Einar Thorarinsson said. "But at the same time, it means we have a bigger target on our back and have to continue to work hard to maintain the status we've achieved. We still have a lot of soccer to play this season."

In related news, Gonzaga sophomore midfielder Ben Funkhouser has been named the West Coast Conference Co-Player of the Week. The product of Spokane's East Valley High School had the decisive goal Friday in the victory over Washington. His first goal of the season and his second career tally came at 84:42 to snap a 1-1 tie and give the Bulldogs its landmark victory.

Funkhouser shared the award with Daniel DeGeer of the University of San Francisco who had his first two career goals and added an assist in the Dons 3-2 win over San Jose State University.

Soccer America Men's Top 25
(Through Matches of Sept. 9)

Team/Record Last Week 1. Wake Forest (4-0-0) 1 2. Connecticut (4-0-0) 6 3. Indiana (3-0-1) 7 4. Southern Methodist (2-0-1) 9 5. Duke (3-1-0) 2 6. Maryland (2-1-1) 4 7. Santa Clara (3-1-0) 5 8. Notre Dame (2-1-1) 9 9. Virginia (3-1-0) 310. UCLA (0-2-1) 1011. Harvard (3-0-0) 1312. GONZAGA (2-1-0) NR13. UC Santa Barbara (1-1-1) 1814. Ohio State (3-0-1) 1915. West Virginia (2-1-0) 2116. Brown (2-0-0) NR17. Northwestern (3-0-1) 1218. Creighton (1-0-2) 1719. Michigan (4-0-0) NR20. Wisconsin (3-1-0) NR21. Virginia Tech (3-1-0) NR22. South Florida (4-0-0) NR23. California (2-1-0) 1124. UC Irvine (2-0-0) NR25. Illinois-Chicago (1-0-1) 24

College Soccer News Men's Top 30
(Through Matches of Sept. 9)

Team/Record Last Week 1. Wake Forest (4-0-0) 2 2. Indiana (3-0-1) 5 3. Southern Methodist (2-0-1) 7 4. Connecticut (4-0-0) 12 5. Duke (3-1-0) 1 6. Santa Clara (3-1-0) 3 7. Maryland (2-1-1) 6 8. Virginia (3-1-0) 4 9. UC Santa Barbara (1-1-1) 910. Notre Dame (2-1-1) 1011. Harvard (3-0-0) 1312. Northwestern (3-0-1) 1513. California (2-1-0) 814. Ohio State (3-0-1) NR15. West Virginia (2-1-0) 2416. South Florida (4-0-0) 2917. Brown (2-0-0) NR18. Virginia Tech (3-1-0) NR19. Saint Louis (0-1-2) 1420. UC Irvine (2-0-0) 2621. GONZAGA (2-1-0) NR22. Creighton (1-0-2) 2223. UCLA (0-2-1) 1124. Washington (1-1-1) 2125. Villanova (2-1-0) NR26. Loyola (MD) (4-0-0) NR27. Akron (2-2-0) 1628. New Mexico (2-2-0) 1729. Northern Illinois (1-1-2) 2730. Fairfield (2-1-0) 18

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTES: Monmouth, Michigan, Tulsa, Clemson, Wisconsin, Binghamton, Towson, St. John's, North Carolina, Lehigh, VCU, N.C. State, South Carolina, Old Dominion, Memphis, Cornell, Denver.