Nov. 8, 1999
MPSF Championships - The winners of the last two MPSF Championships will face off on Wednesday, Nov. 10 with the 1999 MPSF title on the line. Mountain Division winner and 1998 MPSF champion Washington (12-4-2, 7-0 in the MPSF) will host Pacific Division winner and 1997 MPSF champion UCLA (16-1-0, 7-0-0 in the MPSF) at Husky Soccer Field at 1:00 pm.
NCAA Play-in - The winner of the MPSF Championship game will move on to host Mid-Continent Conference winner Oral Roberts (12-8) on Sunday, Nov. 14 in an NCAA play-in game for an automatic berth in the NCAA Championships. UCLA is expected to receive a berth in the Championships, whether it be an automatic or an at-large. The NCAA Tournament bracket will be announced on Monday, Nov. 15 at 6:00 pm.
UCLA's MPSF Championship History - UCLA has won four MPSF Championships, including the last three which were decided in a tournament format. Washington won the MPSF last season when the teams were not divided into Mountain and Pacific Divisions and the MSPF winner was decided solely on conference record. UCLA is 4-1 all-time in MPSF Championship games.
The Series - One of the few teams that has had recent success against UCLA is Washington. In the last four years, UCLA is 1-2-1 against the Huskies and lost the last game 2-0 in 1998. However, the one win was a 1-0 victory in the NCAA second round that helped send the Bruins on their way to the 1997 national championship. UCLA leads the overall series against the Huskies 6-3-2.
A Look at the Huskies - The 12-4-2 Huskies are coached by Dean Wurzberger, a former UCLA assistant coach under Sigi Schmid from 1986-88. Assisting Wurzberger is another former Bruin, Nat Gonzalez (1988-91). Like the Bruins, Washington went 7-0 in conference play and has won seven consecutive games. Junior midfielder Kai Carroll leads the team with seven goals and 16 points. Senior midfielder Wes Hart (5g, 1a) is a Hermann Trophy and MAC Player of the Year Award finalist. Senior James Dickinson and freshman Chad Olsen have shared goalkeeping duties throughout the season. Dickinson holds a 1.31 GAA with two shutouts, and Olsen holds a 0.81 GAA with four shutouts.
Bruins Two Away from Consecutive Wins Record - UCLA is currently on the nation's longest winning streak, a 14-game streak that dates back to a 4-3 double-overtime win over Butler on Sept. 12. The 14-game streak is the second-longest in school history. The Bruins are just two wins shy of tying the school mark of 16, set in 1970.
Bruins Break Losing Skid against Titans - UCLA snapped a three-game losing skid to Cal State Fullerton, defeating the Titans 2-1 in overtime Sunday to win the MPSF Pacific Division title. Senior midfielder Sasha Victorine scored the game-winning goal in the 101st minute. UCLA now leads the all-time series 24-6-2.
Victorine Continues Scoring Tear - With 16 points (5g, 6a) in his last 11 games, senior midfielder and Player of the Year candidate Sasha Victorine continues to pile up big numbers at key moments for the Bruins. Victorine, whose game-winning goal against Cal State Fullerton was his team-leading fourth of the season, has recorded career-highs in all scoring categories this year with 10 goals, eight assists and 28 points. Victorine is having the best offensive season for a Bruin midfielder since Eddie Lewis scored 32 points in 1995.
Player of the Year Candidate Updates -
Sasha Victorine, Midfielder: Senior Sasha Victorine (Corona, Calif./Rio Americano HS), UCLA's team co-captain, is UCLA's scoring leader with a career-high 10 goals and 28 points. Victorine has earned multiple honors this season. On top of being selected a finalist for both the Hermann Trophy and the MAC Award, he was picked as a pre-season All-American by both Soccer America and College Soccer Online. After scoring a hat trick in the Bruins' season opener, he was selected the MET-Rx/UCLA Student-Athlete of the Week. Just two weeks later, he was named the MPSF Player of the Week and the SoccerTimes.com Player of the Week (Sept. 13-19) after scoring two goals and an assist against USF. Last weekend, he was selected the Pacific Soccer Classic Offensive MVP. Victorine has scored a goal or an assist in 10 of his last 11 games.
Pete Vagenas, Midfielder: Senior Pete Vagenas (Pasadena, Calif./St. Francis HS), UCLA's team co-captain, ranks fourth on the team in scoring with 14 points and tied for third with eight assists. This season, Vagenas scored game-winning goals in overtime against Butler and against San Diego State and also assisted on game-winners in overtime against LMU, at UNLV and vs. Virginia.
Carlos Bocanegra, Defender: Junior Carlos Bocanegra (Alta Loma, Calif./Alta Loma HS), was named the Defensive MVP at the CS Fullerton FILA Classic and recorded a goal and an assist in the Bruins' 4-3 overtime win over Butler. He has missed UCLA's last eight games with a knee injury and is listed as game-to-game.
Tennyson Returns but Misses Chance at Breaking School Record - After missing four games due to illness, junior forward McKinley Tennyson, Jr. (Indianapolis, Ind.) failed to score a goal against Cal State Fullerton, snapping his school-record tying streak of five consecutive games with a goal. Tennyson shares the record with MLS stars Joe-Max Moore and Billy Thompson.
Orange County Players Make Splash Against Fullerton - Orange County natives had strong showings against the "hometown" team Sunday when they faced Cal State Fullerton. Fountain Valley's Ryan Futagaki, Rancho Santa Margarita's Scot Thompson and Dana Point's Tim Pierce all started. Futagaki, a sophomore midfielder, got off three good shots in his 65 minutes of play. Pierce, a redshirt freshman forward made his first career start, and freshman defender Thompson scored his second goal of the season to break a scoreless tie in the 68th minute.
Bruin Offense Blooms on the Road - Although the Bruins are a perfect 7-0 at home, leaving the friendly confines of the North Athletic Field shouldn't be a problem for UCLA. In away and neutral games, the Bruins are 9-1 and have scored 28 goals, an average of 3.1 per game and 67% of the team's total goals.
Bruin Players Lend a Helping Hand (or Foot) - UCLA leads the MPSF in assists with 55. Midfielder Shaun Tsakiris and forward Martin Bruno lead the conference with nine assists apiece. Pete Vagenas and Sasha Victorine are close behind with eight each. McKinley Tennyson, Jr. rounds out the Top 10 in 10th place with five.
UCLA Head Coach Todd Salda?a - First-year head coach Todd Salda?a has led his Bruins to an impressive 16-1 record and a perfect 7-0 mark in the MPSF Pacific Division. Salda?a is in his third coaching job at UCLA. Prior to assuming the duties of UCLA men's head coach, he was the head coach for the UCLA women in 1998, and from 1989-95 he was an assistant coach under Sigi Schmid for the UCLA men. Salda?a also assumed duties of interim head coach for the UCLA men from December 1993-August 1994 while Schmid was an assistant coach for the U.S. World Cup Team.