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Lions Ready to Kick Off WCC Play Against #4 Santa Clara

Oct. 3, 2007

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This week
LMU (2-4-1) vs. #4 Santa Clara (5-1-2)Friday, October 5 • 4:00 p.m.Sullivan Field

Following a 12-day layoff, LMU is set for West Coast Conference play with a visit from defending conference champions Santa Clara this Friday at 4 p.m. The Broncos will be the fifth ranked opponent for the Lions in their first eight games

Listen and follow live on the web
Loyola Marymount University, in conjunction with Stretch Internet, is proud to present, FREE, live audio broadcasts over the World Wide Web on www.LMULions.com. Just click on the "Listen" or "Archive" link next to the game of your choice (you will be automatically directed to download QuickTime if it's not yet installed on your computer). All broadcasts will be archived within 72 hours of their original airing and will include both the pre-game and post-game shows.All home games will also be available on Gametracker through the LMU website. Select road games will also be featured.For those who greatly enjoy listening to Toby Kennedy, the "Voice of LMU Soccer", on the radio broadcasts, tune in to Fox Soccer Channel on Wednesday at 8 p.m. Pacific as Toby makes his TV broadcasting debut during the UC Santa Barbara-UC Irvine match.

Media Guide
The 2007 LMU men's soccer media guide is available for download at www.lmulions.com. This is the only source of copies of the guide.

About Santa Clara (5-1-2) • National Rankings: #4 (SoccerTimes), #6 (Coll. Soccer News, NSCAA)
Santa Clara is on a two-match winning streak and undefeated in its last five. The Broncos last played September 22, upsetting #5 UCLA 2-1 in overtime. Trailing 1-0 with less than five minutes to go, SCU mounted a tremendous comeback, with Peter Lowry tying the game at 1-1 with four minutes to go. It was Lowry's third goal in two games. Overtime did not last long as Jeff Cosgriff chipped the UCLA goalkeeper 39 seconds in for the game-winner.Head Coach Cameron Rast is in his sixth season at Santa Clara, compiling a record of 72-28-14. Last year, he led the Broncos to their second West Coast Conference title under him, winning WCC Coach of the Year honors in the process. SCU went 13-5-5 overall and 8-2-2 in conference play in 2006. The Broncos made their 17th NCAA Tournament appearance and third in a row, advancing to the Regional Final before falling 3-1 to Wake Forest. Santa Clara won the 1989 NCAA Championship and has made it to at least the national semi-final four other times.Santa Clara leads the all-time series 19-7-1, although LMU has won three of the last four meetings. Last year, the Lions went up to Santa Clara on September 29 and handed the Broncos a 2-1 defeat. The favor was returned at Sullivan Field on October 29 with a 2-0 Bronco victory. LMU has registered at least one victory over the Broncos each year since the WCC went to the home-and-away format in 2003 and is 4-3-1 at home against Santa Clara since 1997.

Last Week Recap
Over 30 alumni showed up on Saturday at Sullivan Field for the annual Alumni Game and the day turned out to be a memorable one. In an extremely competitive match, the alums were afforded a 12th player throughout the 80 minute match, and the game finished in a 2-2 tie. Freshman Rafael Baca opened the scoring in the first half with an outside of the foot bender over the alumni GK. Assistant Coach Mike Erush hit a free kick bomb early in the second half to tie the score, and Armando Melendez put the alumni up 2-1 with his finish after a terrific alumni build-up. Senior Tyler Mehl evened the score at 2-2 with a solid strike from just outside the box, leaving both sides with a positive result.

LMU in WCC openers
LMU is 5-13-1 all-time in its West Coast Conference opening matches but has had success of late, winning three in a row and four of the last five. Under Paul Krumpe, the Lions are 4-4-1.

Sloustcher, Lane, Baca Named All-Tournament
LMU finished second at the LMU Invitational thanks to the play of senior defender Adam Sloustcher, redshirt freshman goalkeeper Patrick Lane, and freshman forward Rafael Baca, all of whom were named to the All-Tournament team. Sloustcher was outstanding as the anchor of the LMU defense, shutting down the high-octane Harvard offense in LMU's upset win. He was his usual steady self against Columbia, as well, earning the tournament's Defensive co-Most Valuable Player honor.Lane continues to shine between the pipes, gaining the win against Harvard with six saves, tying his career-high. On Sunday, he registered his second career shutout against Columbia. At the other end of the field, Baca tormented opposing defenses with his ball control and passing. Against Harvard, he had two assists and probably should have had a goal himself.

LMU at its Home Tournaments
The Lions hosted the LMU Invitational last weekend, the first tournament held at LMU since 2003, when the Lions hosted the last of four consecutive "LMU Fall Classic" tournaments. With this season's 1-0-1 mark, the Lions have gone 5-2-2 in their home tourneys.

Rankings Mean Nothing
The 3-2 win over #7 Harvard gave LMU a 2-2 record against ranked foes in 2007 and has 14 wins over top-25 teams since 2003. Even more incredible is that LMU has won four of its last six against ranked opponents when playing on the other team's turf. With home-and-home games coming up against Santa Clara, Gonzaga, and San Francisco, all of which have been ranked this season, there will be ample opportunities for the Lions to claim more ranked pelts.

Lions End Tourney Stretch
The first month of the season is always an interesting time as teams try to adjust to new players and get their bearings after a few months off. Add in long road trips against powerhouse opponents and things get even more difficult. With that in mind, the month that LMU had must be considered a success. With 11 newcomers on the field and four matches against ranked opponents, there was little margin for error. Injuries have also been a factor, with seniors Adam Sloustcher and Nick Blanco and junior Jawaan Delaney all missing games. So, taking all that into consideration, LMU's September record of 2-4-1, including victories over #7 Harvard and #17 New Mexico and last-minute 1-0 losses to #16 Creighton and #24 Saint Louis, is something to be proud of. Now, with 12 days off to rest, recuperate, and re-strategize, the Lions will be set to explode once WCC play begins.LMU went 2-3-1 in tournaments in 2007. Since Paul Krumpe took over as head coach in 1998, the Lions are 22-22-6 in regular season tournaments.

Gomez Selected as Candidate for Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
Senior Trini Gomez has been selected as one of 20 candidates nation-wide for the 2007 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. While the on-the-field performance during their collegiate soccer careers is a factor in determining candidates and the eventual winner, their personal character and off-the-field achievements in the classroom and community are major areas of focus.Gomez, a biological sciences major, is a co-captain on the 2007 Lion squad. He transferred to LMU from UCLA as a sophomore and made an immediate impact, leading the Lions with six goals and earning honorable mention All-West Coast Conference honors. A native of Inglewood, Gomez was named a WCC Scholar-Athlete and has been on either the LMU Dean's or Director's List every semester. He has also been awarded the Mexican American Alumni Association Scholarship. This past summer, he shadowed doctors at the UCLA Harbor Hospital as he pursues his goal of going to medical school.From the list of 20 candidates in each sport, a national media committee will select 10 finalists in October. Those ten names will then be placed on the official ballot for a nationwide vote beginning October 16 and concluding November 21. Fan balloting will be coupled with votes from coaches, media and sponsors to determine the recipient of the award. Winners will be announced during the NCAA Soccer Championships, scheduled on December 14-16 in Cary, NC.

Lane is the Main Man in Goal
The competition was fierce for the starting goalkeeper job during preseason training but redshirt freshman Patrick Lane has proven that he was the right man for the job. Lane is 2-3-1 this season with a pair of shutouts in six matches. He has victories over two ranked foes (#7 Harvard and #17 New Mexico) and has been named to two all-tournament teams (Nike/TLC Plumbing & Utility Invitational and LMU Invitational). Through six games, Lane has a 0.96 goals-against-average and has made 24 saves in 561:59 minutes. He ranks second in the WCC in saves and fourth in GAA.

Stisser Strikes Gold
After tying for the team lead with four goals last season, junior midfielder/forward Brad Stisser is out to show that he can do so again. Stisser had the game-winning goal on a free kick to lift the Lions to a 1-0 upset win at #17 New Mexico and supplied the assist on the first goal in the win over #7 Harvard. For his efforts, he earned All-Tournament honors in New Mexico.Stisser has five goals on the Bluff since transferring in from Coastal Carolina in 2006, the most in that time frame among active Lions. He also has shown a knack for producing in crunch time, with three of his five goals as game-winners.Stisser leads the 2007 Lions with 22 shots and is tied for second in the WCC in shots per game at 3.14.

Josh Carroll, Offensive Juggernaut
Redshirt freshman Josh Carroll has been a welcome addition to the midfield corps as he provides a hard-nosed edge and tenacity for ball-winning. His blue-collar work ethic would never be confused with the finesse of a goal-scorer but that's exactly what happened against #7 Harvard as Carroll had a goal and an assist for his first collegiate points. He provided the build-up for the game's opening goal, then gave LMU a 2-0 lead just after halftime with his first career goal, threading a shot through the defense.Carroll's defense was noted when he was named to the Nike/TLC Plumbing & Utility Invitational All-Tournament Team.

Baca on the Scene
It has taken him some time to appear in any of the scoring columns but freshman Rafael Baca has lived up to his billing as the South Bay Daily Breeze Regional Player of the Year. Baca has started all seven matches and is showing signs of adapting to collegiate soccer. He was outstanding in the LMU Invitational, teasing defenders by running at them with pace but also showing field vision and unselfishness by finding open teammates. It was this vision that earned him two assists in the win over #7 Harvard. He set up the Lions' second goal by penetrating the Crimson defense and firing a shot that was saved by the goalie. The ball came back to Baca with the goalie out of the net. It might have tempted any other player to take another whack to score himself but instead Baca showed the maturity to play the ball to Carroll, who had a better shooting angle and made it count. Baca got his second assist when he, at 5-8, out-jumped the taller Harvard defenders to flick on a free kick that was scored by sophomore Steffen Canty.