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Men's Soccer Prepares For Two Games This Week

Sept. 19, 2007

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This Week In Men's Soccer: The Saint Mary's men's soccer team (2-2) will travel to Sacramento State (0-5-1) and then return home to host San Jose State (3-2). The Gaels will face the Hornets on Friday, September 21 at 4 p.m. from Hornet Field. SMC then returns to Saint Mary's Stadium to face SJSU on Sunday, September 23 at 2:30 p.m.

Last Week Recap: Saint Mary's took care of its lone contest of the week by dropping Wright State by the score of 2-1. Senior Erik Robert tallied the game-winner on his first collegiate goal. Junior Brian Siu tallied his first SMC goal in the first half.

Who's Hot: Saint Mary's senior midfielder Erik Robert has had a stellar start to his senior campaign. The Inglewood native recorded his first career goal in impressive fashion by tallying the game-winner against Wright State on Sunday. On the season, Robert is tied for the team lead in points with three.

Scouting Sacramento State: The Hornets have yet to find the win column as they post a 0-5-1 overall record. The Hornets tied their last game 2-2 with UC Riverside and dropped their five previous. On the season, the Hornets have netted five goals and allowed 15. They have been out-shot 100-45.

Individually Sacramento State is led by Ernesto Carranza and Cody Shields. The duo pace the squad with four points each, with Carranza tallying two goals and Shields posting a goal and two assists. In net, Ryan Kenny has logged the majority of the minutes. Kenny has started five games and allowed 15 goals for a 2.59 GAA and 31 saves.

Versus The Hornets: The two teams have met 24 times in the history of the two programs with the Gaels holding a 12-9-3 all-time advantage. The two squads last met in 2005 at Saint Mary's Stadium where the Gaels won 3-0. SMC tied its last road match with Sacramento State 1-1 in 2004.

Scouting San Jose State: The Spartans are currently 3-2-0 on the season. They are coming off of a 1-1 weekend with a victory over UC Riverside and a loss to No. 20 UC Irvine in overtime. SJSU will face No. 6 ranked Santa Clara on Thursday before heading to Moraga. As a team, the Spartans have tallied 12 goals and allowed nine and have benn out-shot by their opponents 77-64.

Individually senior Ismael Ibarra and sophomore Colby Moore lead San Jose State on offense. Both forwards have three goals and six points on the season. In goal, junior co-captain Richard Mann has started all but one game of the season thus far and has made 19 saves.

Versus The Spartans: The two programs have met 24 times with SJSU holding a 16-8 all-time advantage. The two teams met last season in San Jose where the Spartans won 1-0. SMC has dropped its last six to SJSU.WCC Leaders: Saint Mary's junior Justin Kim ranks second in the West Coast Conference with three assists. Kim added to his total in Sunday's contest against Wright State with a hand out on Brian Siu's first SMC goal. Freshman Erik Rivas is second in the conference in shots (14) and shots per game (3.50)

Record Watch: Senior goalkeeper Brian Mason continues to climb up the SMC record books. In three years in net, Mason has put together quite the resume. Mason ranks 1st all-time with a 1.27 career GAA and added another shutout to have 14.5 on his career. Mason moved to second all-time with 5373 minutes played in goal. Randell Smith (1983-86) leads the category with 5,530 minutes played. Mason ranks fourth all-time with 257 career saves, 13 behind Steve Reardon (1995-99), who ranks third all-time. The senior also sits second all time with 58 matches played and is tied for third with 19 wins in net. Smith ranks first with 67 matches played and Kellen Wilson (1999-01, 03) holds the mark with 22 wins.

15 Newcomers Join Saint Mary's: Head coach Adam Cooper welcomes 15 newcomers, including 13 freshmen to the squad. Cooper secured two transfers in Bowling Green defector Justin Kim and CS Northridge defender Brian Siu. Kim was an All-MAC selection as a sophomore while Siu helped guide the Matadors to the 2005 NCAA Tournament. Of the 13 freshmen, Nick Cashmere will see significant time up front while Erik Rivas, Kyle Deremer and Jordan Grider are in line to start a good amount of games. Cooper has a lot of young depth at his disposal at nearly every position.

Head Coach Adam Cooper: In his first season at the helm of the Saint Mary's men's soccer program, Adam Cooper led the Gaels to new achievements. For the first time in school history the Gaels downed ranked opponents in back-to-back games. To start the 2006 conference season, SMC defeated No. 11 USF 1-0 and No. 10 USD 4-2.

Under the direction of Cooper, Desmond Brooks was selected second overall in the Major League Soccer Supplemental Draft by Chivas USA. Brooks became the first men's soccer player at SMC to be drafted by the MLS. Matt Fitzgerald was selected by the California Victory in the 2007 USL First Division College Player Draft.

Cooper was named the head coach for of the U.S. Maccabi junior boy's squad. Cooper will head a team of 14 and 15 year olds for the Maccabi Pan-American games in Argentina.

Next Week: Saint Mary's will take a week off to prepare for its conference slate. The Gaels will open WCC play at home against Gonzaga on Friday, October 5 at 4 p.m. from Saint Mary's Stadium.