Tourney Bid on the Line in Final Weekend
Oct. 28, 2009
FULLERTON, CA -
10/30 vs. UC Davis* (Fullerton, CA) &\#149; 7 p.m.
11/1 vs. Pacific* (Fullerton, CA) &\#149; 1 p.m.
KICK-OFF: The final regular season weekend and a Big West Conference Tournament berth is in the balance for the Cal State Fullerton women's soccer team (4-8-5 overall, 2-3-1 in the Big West) as the Titans host a pair of teams at Titan Stadium. Fullerton welcomes UC Davis to Orange County on Friday night (Oct. 30) at 7 p.m. before Pacific rolls in on Sunday (Nov. 1) for a 1 p.m. kickoff.
IN THE POLLS: Neither UC Davis, Pacific, nor Cal State Fullerton is ranked entering this week's matches.
IT ALL COMES DOWN TO THIS: The final spot for the Big West Conference Tournament is up for grabs this weekend and the Titans are in the thick of the race. Cal State Fullerton needs to sweep the league's Northern California contingent this weekend while hoping archrival Long Beach State posts a win or a tie against OC rival UC Irvine to secure the No. 4 seed and a semifinal matchup on the road against the regular season champion next weekend.
SERIES RECORDS: Cal State Fullerton leads the all-time series with UC Davis by a 4-1 count, losing for the first time in the series last season by a 2-1 score up north... The Titans lead the all-time series with Pacific, 11-5, but had their eight-match winning streak against the Tigers snapped last season with a 3-2 loss in Stockton.
CAN'T MAKE THE MATCH?: Both of this weekend's matches will be broadcast live over the Internet at FullertonTitans.com. A free live audio stream will be available with veteran Fullerton broadcaster Mike Martinez carrying the play-by-play. Links to the broadcast are available by clicking on the microphone logo on the front page of FullertonTitans.com. Live streaming video will also be available via Big West TV on a subscription basis. Fans can log on to http://all-access.cbssports.com/player.html?code=bigw to access all the action.
ABOUT THE AGGIES: UC Davis enters the weekend with a 6-8-1 overall record and a 1-5 mark in conference play for eighth place after falling to UC Santa Barbara (4-1) in its only match last week... the Aggies have lost their last four straight since topping UC Irvine (2-1) on Oct. 9, having been outscored 8-2 in that stretch... Rochelle Van Buskirk leads the team offensively, scoring 13 goals and assisting on four others for 30 points... Marisa Boge (6 goals, 4 assists) has also been an offensive threat this season... In net, Sarah Peters has posted a 1.38 goals against average in 15 starts, making 56 saves.
ABOUT THE TIGERS: Pacific enters the weekend with a 9-5-3 overall record and a 3-2-1 mark in Big West play for a fourth-place tie with UC Irvine - just three points ahead of the Titans in the standings... the Tigers will play at UC Riverside on Friday before Sunday's showdown with Cal State Fullerton... Last weekend, Pacific fell to league-leading Cal Poly (1-0) and battled UC Santa Barbara to a scoreless tie in Big West action... Maricela Padilla leads the team offensively with eight goals and a pair of assists (18 points) while Angelica Figueroa has scored five times and assisted on eight others to share the team scoring lead... In net, Jill Medigovich has started all 17 matches, posting a 0.81 goals against average and six shutouts while making 54 saves.
FLYING SOUTH: Friday night will feature a rare visit to Titan Stadium for UC Davis as four of the five all-time meetings with the Aggies (including both Big West Conference meetings) have been played in Northern California. The Titans triumphed in the only meeting between the two schools in Southern California, downing the Aggies, 4-1, in a non-conference affair on Oct. 23, 2005. Cal State Fullerton, however, has seen plenty of the Tigers at Titan Stadium, holding a 7-1 record against Pacific at home, including winning the last six straight meetings.¬
FIT TO BE TIED: Cal State Fullerton's scoreless draw with New Mexico on Oct. 25 gave the Titans five ties overall on the season, extending their school record and moving them one shy of the Big West Conference record shared by four teams. The last Big West squad to reach six draws in a season was UC Santa Barbara, which finished 7-7-6 overall in 2006. Last week's scoreless tie with the Lobos was also the second of the year and the sixth in school history - all coming since the 2004 season.
OH MY, OT: Fullerton has provided its fans with bonus soccer six times this season (all at home) - the third-most overtime matches in school history. The school record was set in 2007 when the Titans went to OT eight times while the inaugural 1993 squad played in seven overtime matches. The five double overtime matches are also the second most in school history behind the six played in 2007. Fu¬llerton is 16-22-25 (.452) all-time in overtime matches: 8-16-7 (.371) in single overtime contests and 8-6-18 (.531) when going to double overtime.
EASY AS 1-2: After 10 consecutive matches of neither team scoring more than one goal, sophomore Stacey Fox and junior Christina Murillo finally gave the Titans' offense a spark, each denting the back of the net in a 2-0 victory over Long Beach State. It marked only the second time this season that Fullerton had scored multiple goals in a match dating all the way back to a 2-0 win over Michigan on Sept. 11 at home.
MURILLO ON THE MOVE: Junior Christina Murillo netted the 11th goal of her career in the Titans' victory over Long Beach State, putting her just one goal shy of matching former Titan Michele Bannister (2001-02) for 10th on the school's all-time list. The goal also gave Murillo 25 career points - just seven shy of Kim Houg (11 goals, 10 assists) for 10th on that career list. Murillo's 11 goals and 25 points are the most among active Titans.
CHANGE IS GOOD: No butterflies for freshman goalkeeper Jessica Change in her first career Division I start as the rookie made four saves to log her first career shutout against New Mexico last weekend. It was only the second appearance of the season for Change, who hadn't played since entering at halftime of a loss to USC on Sept. 4 in San Diego.
MY HERO ZERO: All four of Cal State Fullerton's victories this season have come via the shutout and, coupled with the Titans' two 0-0 results against Cal State Bakersfield and New Mexico, have compiled six clean sheets on the year - three more than all of 2008 and the most since they posted eight shutouts in 2007. All three of Fullerton's goalkeepers have netted shutouts on the season led by Shannon Simpson's three clean sheets.
ONE IS THE WINNINGEST NUMBER: Apparently, it's all you need. Of the Titans' last 11 matches, six have finished with 1-0 results (with Fullerton going 2-4 in those contests) while three others have ended in 1-1 draws (San Francisco, Washington, and UC Irvine).
OFFENSIVE WOES, DEFENSE DOMINANT: Cal State Fullerton's offense has struggled to find the back of the net in its last 13 contests, scoring just nine times while battling to a 4-4-5 record in those matches. The defense, however, has been solid, allowing just seven goals (0.50 goals against average) in that span with six shutouts.
MORE ON THE DEFENSE: If the season ended today, Fullerton's 17 goals allowed would stand as the second-fewest allowed in a season in school history, just two more than the record of 15 goals allowed in 2005 during the Titans' run to the third round of the NCAA Tournament. Should Cal State Fullerton allow less than three goals in its final two matches of the year, the 2009 season will mark only the third time that a Titan squad will have allowed 20 goals or fewer in a season joining the 2005 and 2004 (18) teams. This season's 0.94 goals against average also stands among the best, ranking third all-time behind the 2005 (0.64) and 2004 (0.89) teams.
THE OFFENSE, HOWEVER...: While the defense may be enjoying one of its finer campaigns, the Fullerton offense has had one to forget as the Titans' 10 goals this season are the fewest in school history. Barring a pair of four-goal outbursts against UC Davis and Pacific this weekend, Fullerton will break the previous mark of 18 goals scored set by the inaugural Titan team in 1993. Also in danger, marks for fewest assists (8 in 2009, 9 in 1993), fewest points (28 in 2009, 51 in 1993), and fewest shots (139 in 2009, 155 in 1993).