Women's Soccer Season Opener Pits Host Titans Against Former Big West Foe
Aug. 24, 2006
FULLERTON, CA -
TIME FOR KICK OFF
The Cal State Fullerton women's soccer team opens the 2006 regular season at home on Sunday (Aug. 27) at 1 p.m. as the Titans take on former Big West Conference foe Idaho at Titan Stadium.
ON THE AIR
This Sunday's match will be broadcast live over the Internet at www.FullertonTitans.com. Mike Martinez, who handled the broadcasts for all of last season, will handle the play-by-play once again in 2006.
Cal State Fullerton holds a 4-2-1 all-time record against Idaho, last posting a win over the Vandals in 2004 - a 4-0 triumph at Titan Stadium - in Idaho's last season as a member of the Big West. Fullerton has won three of the last four meetings with the Vandals dating back to 2001 with Idaho last posting a win in the series in 2003 - a 2-0 shutout win in Moscow, ID. The Titans hold a 16-7 advantage in scoring in the history of the series.
Idaho is under the direction of second-year head coach Pete Showler and returns six starters and 12 letterwinners off of last season's 3-16 squad. Senior Jenny Springer returns to lead the offense after scoring four goals in 2005.
The Titans open their eight-match September road trip on Labor Day weekend at the California Invitational in Berkeley, Calif. Fullerton kicks-off on Friday (Sept. 1) at 2 p.m. against Saint Mary's before meeting host California on Sunday (Sept. 3) at 1 p.m. Live stats will be available for all games at www.calbears.com.
FULLERTON OPENS IN TOP 25
After finishing the 2005 season ranked in the top 15 in a pair of polls, the Titans will open the 2006 campaign in a similar position. Cal State Fullerton is ranked No. 15 by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America and No. 21 according to the Soccer Times preseason poll. It is the first time in the program's history that the Titans have been ranked in any poll to open a season.
Sunday's contest against the Vandals will be the only chance for fans to catch the Titans at home for more than a month as Fullerton will play its next eight matches away from the friendly confines of Titan Stadium - a venue where Cal State Fullerton posted 10 wins in 11 matches a season ago. The Titans won't take the field at Titan Stadium again until Sept. 28 against Arizona.
Cal State Fullerton has historically struggled in season openers, posting a 4-9 opening day record and losing eight of its last 10 season openers. The Titans, who have opened a season away from home only once in the history of the program (1993 at San Diego State), have lost their last two openers after winning back-to-back openers in 2002 and 2003. In more encouraging news, all four of Fullerton's season-opening wins have come at Titan Stadium - the site of this weekend's opener.
HOME SWEET HOME
Titan Stadium has truly been a home field advantage for Cal State Fullerton as the Titans have posted a 36-9-2 (.787) record on the home pitch over the last five seasons - including a school-best 10-1 mark last season. Fullerton, which is 78-53-6 (.591) all-time at home in the 13-year history of the program, is currently riding a 10-match home winning streak dating back to the 2005 season-opening loss to San Diego State and has triumphed in 13 of its last 14 home matches dating back to the 2004 season.
SCHEDULE WILL TEST YOUNG TITANS
The young Cal State Fullerton roster will be tested early on as the Titans' 2006 schedule features six teams that participated in last year's NCAA Tournament, including three teams that advanced to the third round (California, Texas A&M, and Arizona) and a national quarterfinalist (Santa Clara). In addition, four of Cal State Fullerton's 2006 opponents (Santa Clara, Texas A&M, California, and Arizona) are ranked in the top 25 by one or more of the nation's preseason polls.
THE TITANS' OWN "COACH K"
Fullerton is led by sixth-year Head Coach Ali Khosroshahin, who has led the Titans to a 64-32-4 (.660) overall record and three Big West Conference titles in his five seasons at the helm. Under his tutelage, 39 players have been named to All-Big West Conference teams (including 21 first-team honorees), seven players have earned individual accolades from the conference, 11 players have been named to various All-West Region teams, and the program has seen its first two All-Americans (Karen Bardsley and Marlene Sandoval) and an Olympian (Marlene Sandoval - Mexico, 2004).
TITANS PICKED 2ND IN BIG WEST
The Cal State Fullerton women's soccer team received two first-place votes and was picked to finish second in the Big West Conference in 2006 according to a poll of the league's coaches.
Long Beach State received three first-place votes and 56 points overall to finish atop the preseason poll for the first time in school history.
The Titans, who garnered 48 points overall, are right behind the 49ers followed by UC Santa Barbara in third place with 42 points and Cal Poly, which received two first-place votes, in fourth place with 41 points overall.
Pacific (35 points, one first-place vote) was picked fifth place with UC Riverside (34 points), Cal State Northridge (20 points), and UC Irvine (12 points) rounding out the poll.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE TITANS
Following a record-setting season in 2005, it will truly take a team effort in 2006 for the Titans to defend their Big West title and make a second-straight trip to the NCAA Tournament. Fullerton returns just four starters and 11 letterwinners off of last season's 19-4 squad (6-1 in the Big West) while welcoming 14 newcomers to the fold and sporting a 36-player roster that features 20 underclassmen - including 14 true or redshirt freshmen.
TITANS TO MAKE NATIONAL TV DEBUT
The Cal State Fullerton women's soccer squad will make its television debut in late October as the Titans' clash with rival Long Beach State at Titan Stadium will be shown live on the Fox Soccer Channel at 8 p.m. For more information and local channel (cable and satellite) listings, visit their website at www.foxsoccer.com.