Two Weeks Left as Titans Look to Improve Position
Oct. 19, 2011
FULLERTON, CA -
KICK OFF: With just two weeks remaining in the Big West Conference regular season, the Cal State Fullerton women's soccer team (7-7-2 overall, 1-3 in the Big West Conference) looks to jump back into the race for the league title this weekend beginning on Thursday night (Oct. 20) as the Titans host Cal State Northridge at 6 p.m. Fullerton, which plays three of its final four matches at home, then closes out the week with its final road match of 2011, travelling to UC Riverside on Sunday (Oct. 23) for a 6 p.m. kickoff.
IN THE POLLS: Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Northridge, and UC Riverside are unranked this weeks national polls, but the Titans are ranked No. 9 in the West Region according to the NSCAA - up one spot from a week ago.
BE A FOLLOWER: Fans can keep up with the latest in Titans athletics by following us on Facebook (CSUF.Athletics), Twitter (@FullertonTitans) and Vimeo.com (vimeo.com/fullertontitans). In addition, the women's soccer team has established its own Twitter feed; get the inside scoop at @CSUF_WSoccer.
"CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?": Select Cal State Fullerton women's soccer matches this season can be heard live over the Internet at www.FullertonTitans.com thanks to a partnership with Arizona-based Stretch Internet. Veteran soccer broadcaster Mike Martinez will have the calls live from Titan Stadium. To access the links, click on the headphones icon in the upper right-hand corner of the homepage at FullertonTitans.com. Due to facility limitations in Riverside, only Thursday's home match against Cal State Northridge will be streamed live this week.
"CAN YOU SEE ME NOW?": Thanks to a partnership between the Big West Conference and the CBS College Sports Network, live video of select Cal State Fullerton women's soccer home and road contests will be streamed live over the Internet via the BigWestTV platform. A monthly subscription of \$9.95 or an annual subscription of \$79.95 delivers exclusive coverage to you. For more information, please visit www.BigWest.org/TV or access the video player at www.fansonly.com/schools/bigw/allaccess/index.html.
CAL STATE NORTHRIDGE BRIEFLY: The Matadors enter the week with a 5-7-2 overall record, but a 3-1-1 mark in the Big West for a second-place tie (10 points)... Northridge has won two straight - and three of its last four - including a 1-0 upset of No. 22 Long Beach State in its last outing... Heidi Farran, who had the game-winner to beat the 49ers, leads the team with six goals and 14 points overall... Melissa Fernandez is second with three goals and nine points and co-leads the team with three assists... Cynthia Jacobo has played all but 36 minutes in net, posting a 1.21 goals against average and 44 saves in 14 starts.
FOR THE RECORD: The Titans lead the all-time series with the Matadors, 10-4, but have lost three straight dating back to 2008 following seven consecutive series wins... Fullerton's last win was a 3-0 triumph at home in 2007 and the Titans haven't won in Northridge since a 1-0 win in 2006... CSUN has outscored Fullerton, 6-1, in the last three matches, including back-to-back shutouts in the last two seasons... the Titans are 6-1 against the Matadors at home in the series.
UC RIVERSIDE BRIEFLY: The Highlanders enter the week similar to the Titans at 7-7-1 overall and 2-2 in the Big West for a fifth-place tie (6 points)... UCR, which is 5-2 at home this season, has alternated wins and losses over its last seven matches, falling 2-0 at UC Santa Barbara before edging Cal Poly, 2-1, in overtime last weekend... Andrea Morales leads the team with four goals and eight points on only 17 shots... six of the Highlanders' eight goal scorers this season have found the back of the net multiple times... Jessica Olafsen, one of three keepers for UCR this season, has seen the majority of time in net, posting a 1.18 goals against average and 52 saves in 10 appearances.
FOR THE RECORD: Fullerton leads the series with Riverside by a 6-4-1 count, having won two straight and five of the last six... the Titans are 3-2-1 against the Highlanders at home all-time in the series... Fullerton's last loss in the series came in 2008 - a 3-2 defeat at home... the Titans have outscored UCR, 12-6, over the last six meetings.
"O CAPTAIN! MY CAPTAIN!": Senior Caitlin Mellano along with redshirt juniors Jennifer Smith, JeAnne Mazeau, and Stacey Fox have been selected by the coaching staff as team captains for the 2011 season.
TITANS SLIP TO FIFTH AMONG BIG WEST TEAMS IN LATEST NCAA RPI REPORT: Cal State Fullerton stood fifth among its Big West Conference bretheren in the NCAA's fourth RPI report for the 2011 season released on Oct. 19. The Titans are ranked No. 88 this week - just one spot back of Thursday night's opponent, Cal State Northridge. UC Irvine (No. 35), Long Beach State (No. 56), and UC Davis (No. 81) lead the way while Cal Poly (No. 102), UC Santa Barbara (No. 153), Pacific (No. 165), and UC Riverside (No. 167) round out the conference rankings. The complete list is available at http://www.ncaa.com/rankings/soccer-women/d1.
WIN-WIN SITUATION: Fullerton's win over Bakersfield on Sunday gave the Titans their seventh win of the year -- surpassing last year's total and the most in a single-season since the 2008 squad finished 7-11-1 overall. One more victory will give Fullerton its highest win total since 2007 (12-8-2) and three wins in its final four matches will put the Titans in double figures for the first time since that same year.
90 MINUTES? WE DO THAT IN OUR SLEEP: For the first time in nine weekends, the Cal State Fullerton women's soccer team DID NOT play an overtime match in splitting it's two contests in regulation time last week. The Titans, who have played in a school-record nine overtime matches this season, are 3-4-2 in overtime this season and have played extra time 26 times in 95 matches (27%) in the four-plus seasons under Head Coach Demian Brown, posting a 7-9-10 (.462) mark in those contests.
MORE "OT" FUN FACTS: Fullerton's loss to UC Irvine ended a streak of four-straight overtime contests - the first time that has happened in the history of the program... Fullerton has now played a grand total of 107:02 of extra time this season - that's a whole extra game plus ANOTHER 17:02 of overtime... after going winless in their previous 11 overtime matches (0-4-7), the Titans are now 3-2-1 in their last six OT contests... Fullerton's overtime matches against Columbia (Sept. 11) and New Mexico (Sept. 16) marked the 13th time in school history that the Titans have played extra time in back-to-back matches, but the first time that they have won both contests... Including this season, the Titans are 19-24-22 (.462) overall in overtime in the history of the program and 9-6-15 (.550) in double overtime matches only.
MCCANTS FINDS HER WAY BACK TO THE SCORING COLUMN: Sophomore Nikki McCants rejoined the ranks of Titan goal scorers on Sunday against Bakersfield, as her eighth-minute strike stood up in Fullerton's 1-0 win. It was the first goal for the Corona, Calif., native since scoring the first of three Titan goals against New Mexico in Albuquerque on Sept. 16 and moved her into second place on the team with four on the year. Her six career goals are the second-most among active Titans, trailing only teammate Stacey Fox, who leads the group with 11 career strikes and 25 career points in two-plus seasons.
GOTTA GET UP PRETTY EARLY: McCants' strike with just 7:14 gone in the match against the Roadrunners marked the quickest Titans goal this season, besting the previous mark of 13:14 (also scored by McCants) against Long Island on Aug. 21, and the quickest for a Titan in over four years when Lauren Cram (2004-07) scored just 51 seconds into a match against Loyola Marymount on Sept. 20, 2007.
GO WEST, YOUNG WOMAN!: Whatever sophomore Janali West had for breakfast last weekend better be on the menu from now on. West added three more points to her total this past weekend, scoring her second goal of the season on Friday night against UC Irvine and adding a game-winning assist on teammate Nikki McCants' game-winner on Sunday against Cal State Bakersfield. West's big weekend gave her a point in three of the team's last five matches and moved her into sixth place on the team in scoring with five points, becoming the sixth multiple-goal scorer on the Titans' roster this season.
CROWD PLEASERS: The third-largest crowd in school history watched conference rivals Cal State Fullerton and UC Irvine battle it out on Oct. 14 in front of 1,277 fans -- the most since the Titans drew 1,288 for an NCAA Tournament match-up with UNLV on Nov. 11, 2005. It was only the sixth time in school history that Fullerton has drawn better than 1,000 fans and just 293 shy of the school record of 1,570 drawn against Long Beach State on Oct. 19, 2001. The Titans have now played in front of a trio of top-15 crowds this season, drawing 845 fans for their match against Pepperdine on Aug. 26 (which ranks No. 9 on the list) and 770 fans for Fullerton's win over Long Island on Aug. 21 (which ranks No. 14). Nationally, the 4,265 fans in attendance to watch Fullerton's match at BYU in Provo, UT, is currently the seventh-largest in the country in 2011, while the 2,091 fans for the Titans' match at New Mexico is the second-largest that they have played in front of this season.
ONE IS THE LONLIEST NUMBER: And, frankly, probably one of the most frustrating in the sport of soccer. Fullerton's 1-0 win over Bakersfield on Sunday marked the team's fifth-straight one-goal decision and improved the Titans to 4-7 in one-goal contests this season. The Titans, who have scored 22 times this season (one shy of last year's 19-game total), haven't scored more than one goal in a match since they earned their first conference win this season at UC Santa Barbara on Oct. 2 in a 2-1 win.
GOALS WANTED: Fullerton is 2-5-1 in matches where it has scored only one goal this season as Sunday's win over Bakersfield was the Titans' first since a 1-0 overtime victory against Columbia on Sept. 11 at home.
WELL, THAT ENDS THAT "STREAK": Cal State Fullerton's 1-0 win Bakersfield ended a string of four consecutive 2-1 decisions for the Titans dating back to their trip to Cal Poly on Sept. 30. The 2-1 score hasn't been kind to Fullerton this season as the Titans are just 1-5 in matches that have ended in that score, falling to Pepperdine (Aug. 26), BYU (Sept. 2), the Mustangs, Long Beach State (Oct. 9), and UC Irvine (Oct. 14) while posting their only win in those games at UC Santa Barbara on Oct. 2.
PLAYING WITH A LEAD: For the third consecutive match -- and the fourth time in their last five contests -- the Titans were the first on the scoreboard against Bakersfield but, Sunday, the result was a lot different as Fullerton was able to hold on for the win after losing heartbreakers to Long Beach State (2-1 in overtime) and UC Irvine (2-1) in back-to-back conference matches. Prior to Sunday's win, the Titans were 0-3-1 in their last four contests in which they scored first.
SOMETHING'S A LITTLE "OFF": Cal State Fullerton's offense has seemed to be a step too quick this season, whistled for 39 offsides through 16 matches this year compared to just six for its opponents in 2011. Last weekend against Bakersfield, the Titans were whistled for six offsides against the Roadrunners -- just one shy of the team's season high of seven set against Utah (Aug. 19) and Long Beach State (Oct. 9). Only four teams have been called for an offsides against Fullerton: Utah, Long Island, UC Santa Barbara, and UC Irvine, but the Titans have been called for at least one offside infraction in 13 of their 16 matches this season.
AWWW, SHOOT!!!!: Cal State Fullerton remains atop the Big West Conference with 265 shots thus far this season - a drastic improvement over the offensive struggles that the Titans endured a season ago. The 265 shots eclipsed Fullerton's total from all of 2010 (195) and are the most shots in a season for the Titans since they took 290 shots as a team in 2007. Cal State Fullerton has already reached double-digit shot totals in 15 of its 16 matches this season (compared to just seven times in 19 matches overall in 2010), including three 20-shot matches and a 30-shot performance against Columbia on Sept. 11, and have outshot its opponent 11 times - four more than during all of last year.
NEVER MET A SHOT SHE DIDN'T LIKE: Junior Ann Marie Tangorra continues to lead the Titans with 40 shots on the year -- the highest shot total for a Titan since Brianna Buffington finished with 42 shots in 2007. Tangorra's 43rd shot this year will be the most for a Fullerton player in six years when a quintet of Titans finished with 43-plus shots in 2005: Kandace Wilson (63), Lauryn Welch (55), Lisa Kosena (48), Rebekah Patrick (45), and Erin Shelton (43).
LEADER IN THE CLUBHOUSE: Redshirt junior Stacey Fox found the back of the net for the second-straight contest at Long Beach State, scoring for the third time this season and moving into a tie for second place on the team in that category. The score was Fox's 11th of her career, placing her atop the list in that category among active Titans and tied for 10th among active players in the Big West Conference this season. Her goal against UC Santa Barbara on Oct. 2 put her amongst an elite group as she became only the 17th Fullerton player in the history of the program to reach double-digit goals in a career and she is now just two scores shy of breaking into the school's all-time chart with Brianna Buffington (2005-07) and her 13 career goals that rank No. 10 on the list.