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WCC Men's Soccer Weekly Notes - 10/9

Oct. 9, 2007

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WCC Co-Players of the Week
Vito Higgins, Gonzaga & Austin Guerrero, Portland

A pair of goalkeepers share WCC Player of the Week honors, as Gonzaga's Vito Higgins and Portland's Austin Guerrero each posted two shutouts over the weekend. Higgins, who also earned WCC Co-Player of the Week honors last week, collected five saves in a 1-0 Bulldog victory over Saint Mary's on Friday before notching another shutout with three saves in a 2-0 win at San Francisco on Sunday. Guerrero's effort nearly mirrored that of Higgins, as Portland's freshman netminder collected six saves in a 1-0 victory at San Francisco on Friday before picking up two more saves in a scoreless draw at Saint Mary's on Sunday. Both goalkeepers moved into a tie for the conference lead with four shutouts on the season.

Upcoming Games

Oct. 12
Loyola Marymount at Gonzaga* - 1:00 PM
! San Francisco at Santa Clara* - 5:00 PM
San Diego at Portland* - 7:00 PM

Oct. 14
Loyola Marymount at Portland* - 2:00 PM
San Diego at Gonzaga* - 2:00 PM
Santa Clara at Saint Mary's* - 2:00 PM

* Denotes Conference Game; ! Game televised on Fox Soccer Channel

Around The WCC

Santa Clara And San Francisco To Be Featured On Fox Soccer Channel
One of the most storied rivalries in college soccer history will be renewed on national television on Friday, as San Francisco will make the short trip to Santa Clara for a conference clash on the Fox Soccer Channel. The match, slated for a 5:00 PM (PT) start, will be televised as part of the NSCAA College Match of the Week package, and will feature two conference programs that have claimed each of the last four WCC championships. The match will mark the first time that a regular season WCC men's soccer contest will be broadcast to a national television audience.

Road Teams Dominate Over The Weekend
Road teams dominated on the first full weekend of conference play, as visiting squads posted a 5-0-1 record against their hosts last week. Gonzaga and Santa Clara each recorded a pair of wins, with the Zags knocking off Saint Mary's and San Francisco in the Bay Area and the Broncos posting wins at Loyola Marymount and San Diego. Portland topped the Dons before playing Saint Mary's to a 0-0 tie. In addition, shutouts were recorded in all six conference matches.

SCU Tops In NSCAA/adidas West Region Rankings
The Santa Clara Broncos were ranked No. 1 in the NSCAA/adidas West Region rankings for the sixth straight week after knocking off Loyola Marymount and San Diego on the road over the weekend. Gonzaga jumped up a spot in the regional listing to No. 5 after a pair of road wins. San Francisco is the only other conference team to earn a regional ranking this season, garnering a No. 5 listing on September 18.

WCC Team Notes

Gonzaga Bulldogs (7-2-1 / 2-0-1 WCC)
- Gonzaga extended its unbeaten streak to six straight games with a pair of road wins in WCC play over the weekend. The Zags shut out Saint Mary's, 1-0, before handing San Francisco a 2-0 defeat on Sunday.

- Grant Lundberg netted the game-winner in Friday's win over the Gaels, notching his second game-winning goal of the season.

- Vito Higgins collected eight saves en route to recording his third and fourth shutouts of the season over the weekend. Higgins, who has already matched his shutout total from last year, currently ranks third on the Gonzaga career list with 12 clean sheets.

- The No. 23 ranked Bulldogs return home for the first time since September 7, hosting Loyola Marymount (10/12) and San Diego (10/14) this weekend. The Zags will play six of their final nine contests of the 2007 season at Martin Field.

Loyola Marymount Lions (2-5-1 / 0-1-0 WCC)
- Loyola Marymount fell to No. 4 ranked Santa Clara in the WCC opener for both squads at Sullivan Field on Friday, 1-0.

- Brad Stisser and Nick Blanco attempted two shots apiece in the loss to the Broncos. Stisser upped his team-high shots total to 24 on the season, while Blanco has attempted eight shots so far this year.

- Goalkeeper Patrick Lane continued to be stellar in between the pipes, collecting two saves against Santa Clara. Lane, who owns a 0.97 goals against average, has started seven of LMU's eight games so far this season and enters the week ranked fourth in the conference with 26 saves.

- The Lions hit the road for WCC contests at No. 23 ranked Gonzaga (10/12) and Portland (10/14) this weekend.

Portland Pilots (4-3-3 / 1-0-2 WCC)
- Portland posted a pair of shutouts on the road, knocking off San Francisco by a 1-0 margin on Friday before playing Saint Mary's to a scoreless draw on Sunday.

- Frankie Lopez tallied the game-winner on an assist from Alex Elliott to provide the difference in Friday's win. It marked the second goal of the season for the freshman, and Elliott was credited with his fourth assist of the year, tying him for the WCC lead.

- Austin Guerrero was outstanding in net, posting his third and fourth shutouts of the season over the weekend. The freshman made eight total saves in 200 minutes of play, and has not allowed a goal in his last 284 minutes in between the pipes.

- Portland returns to Merlo Field this weekend for conference clashes with San Diego (10/12) and Loyola Marymount (10/14).

Saint Mary's Gaels (4-3-1 / 0-1-1 WCC)
- Saint Mary's was edged by then-No. 24 Gonzaga on Friday, 1-0, before playing Portland to a scoreless draw in Moraga on Sunday.

- Keenan Flynn posted his first career shutout, making three second half saves to preserve Sunday's 0-0 tie with the Pilots.

- Justin Kim attempted a pair of shots in each of Saint Mary's games last week. The junior has attempted 17 shots on the year, and enters the week tied for the WCC lead with four assists.

- Friday's loss to the Zags snapped a three-match winning streak for SMC, its longest since the 2003 campaign.

- Saint Mary's returns to action at home against No. 4 Santa Clara (10/14) this week.

San Diego Toreros (3-6-0 / 0-1-0 WCC)
- San Diego was edged by then-No. 18 ranked UCLA, 1-0, before opening conference play with a 2-0 loss to No. 4 ranked Santa Clara at Torero Stadium on Sunday.

- San Diego enters the week ranked fourth in the conference with 11 team goals so far this season. Eight different Toreros have found the back of the net for USD, with Fabrice Gautrat and JT Howlan leading the way with two goals each.

- Dustin Guerrero led the San Diego attack with three shots in Sunday's loss to the Broncos, and enters the week with a team-high 17 shot attempts on the year.

- San Diego continues conference play in the Northwest, as the Toreros will travel to face Portland (10/12) and No. 23 ranked Gonzaga (10/14) this weekend. The Zags will be the fifth ranked team that USD has faced this season.

San Francisco Dons (4-5-0 / 0-2-0 WCC)
- San Francisco opened conference play with a pair of defeats at home, falling 1-0 to Portland on Friday before suffering a 2-0 defeat against then-No. 24 ranked Gonzaga on Sunday.

- Conor Chinn continued to pace the USF attack, attempting a match-high five shots in the loss to Portland and adding two more shots in Sunday's defeat. The sophomore enters the week tied for second in the conference with 25 shots on the year.

- San Francisco's goalkeeper platoon of Eric Conner (27 saves) and Jeremy Coupe (16 saves) has combined to collect 43 saves so far this season, the highest team total in the WCC.

- San Francisco makes the short trip to face Bay Area rival Santa Clara (10/12) at Buck Shaw Stadium on Friday. The contest will be televised live on Fox Soccer Channel as part of the NSCAA College Match of the Week package.

Santa Clara Broncos (7-1-2 / 2-0-0 WCC)
- Santa Clara opened its conference slate by posting a 1-0 win at LMU on Friday before knocking off San Diego by a 2-0 margin on Sunday.

- Kevin Klasila continued his outstanding play in between the pipes for the Broncos, posting back-to-back shutouts on the weekend to move into a tie for the conference lead with four clean sheets. The freshman has allowed just one goal in six starts in the SCU net, and enters the week with a WCC-best 0.19 goals against average.

- Jamil Roberts' second goal of the season proved to be the game-winner in Friday's victory over the Lions.

- The Broncos take a seven-match unbeaten streak into this weekend's matches against San Francisco (10/12) and Saint Mary's (10/14). Friday's contest against USF will be televised live on Fox Soccer Channel as part of the NSCAA College Match of the Week package.

Games To Watch

San Diego at Portland - Friday, October 12 at 7:00 PM
San Diego will look to get back on the winning track when it travels to Portland this Friday. The Pilots have posted a 1-0-2 mark in WCC action this season, while the Toreros will be looking for their first WCC win after falling to Santa Clara on Sunday. San Diego senior midfielder Dustin Guerrero will square off against his brother, Portland freshman goalkeeper Austin Guerrero, in the first collegiate meeting between the siblings from Chula Vista, CA.

#4 Santa Clara at Saint Mary's - Sunday, October 14 at 2:00 PM
Santa Clara will look to extend its seven-match unbeaten run when it meets Bay Area rivals San Francisco and Saint Mary's this weekend. The Broncos have posted a 19-1-2 mark against the Gaels since round robin WCC play began in 1988, but SMC held Santa Clara to a scoreless draw in their first meeting last season. Sunday's contest will mark the end of a four-match homestand for Saint Mary's.