Sept. 18, 2000
This Week -- Head coach Todd Salda?a's No. 1-ranked UCLA men's soccer team (4-0-0) will travel down the 405 freeway to face UC Irvine (5-1-0) on Thursday, Sept. 21 at Anteater Stadium on the UC Irvine campus at 4:30 pm (PLEASE NOTE THIS CHANGE IN GAME TIME!). The Bruins will return home to take on UC Santa Barbara (3-3-0) on Sunday, Sept. 24 at Frank W. Marshall Field at 2:00 pm.
A Look at UC Irvine -- UC Irvine, coached by George Kuntz, is off to its best start in six years. Coincidentally, six years ago in 1994, the Anteaters had a 5-1 record entering their home match with UCLA and won, 4-2. Jon Spencer leads the team with 11 points on four goals and three assists. Eric Monterastelli is close behind with nine points on four goals and one assist. Goalkeeper Tyler Reid holds a goals against average of 0.67 with three shutouts.
A Look at UC Santa Barbara -- UC Santa Barbara, coached by 1999 MPSF Pacific Division Co-Coach of the Year Tim Vom Steeg, was hit hard with major injuries in games last week. On Sept. 13, senior forward and leading scorer Thiago Martins suffered a concussion and missed the remainder of that match along with the Sept. 17 match at California. He is listed as probable for this weekend. On Sept. 17, co-captain A.J. Albertalli was rushed to the hospital after suffering multiple facial fractures and a concussion after a collision with a Cal player. He will miss the rest of the season.
The Series -- UCLA leads the series against UC Irvine, 12-1, with the only loss coming in 1994. UCLA has won the last five meetings, including a 1-0 victory a year ago. The Bruins also lead against UC Santa Barbara, 27-2-0, with 13 consecutive victories. In last year's contest, Ryan Lee scored a goal, and Shaun Tsakiris added two assists to help lead the Bruins to a 3-1 victory.
Tennyson Nets Second Consecutive Hat Trick -- Hermann Trophy nominee McKinley Tennyson Jr. netted his second consecutive hat trick Sept. 17 against San Francisco, scoring all three goals in UCLA's 3-0 win. He becomes the first player in UCLA history to record two consecutive hat tricks. The three goals give him seven goals in just three games this season, giving him a per-game average of 2.33. Tennyson, last week's SoccerTimes.com National Player of the Week and the Pac-10 Player of the Week, now has 32 career goals and 82 career points, and his seven career multiple goal games are tied for second in UCLA's record books.
Gregorio Takes Over Assist Lead -- Freshman forward Adolfo Gregorio has quickly found his niche on the UCLA team, dishing out a team-leading five assists in his last two games. Gregorio's favorite target so far has been McKinley Tennyson Jr. Four of Gregorio's five assists have led to Tennyson goals. The Hilmar, CA native ranks third on the team in scoring with seven points and has scored a goal or assist in three of the Bruins' four games.
Orange County Athletes Return Home -- The Bruins should have a big contingent of fans for Thursday's game at UC Irvine, since several team members hail from Orange County, including Irvine native and Irvine HS grad Matt Taylor, who ranks third on the team with two assists. Also returning home are defender Scot Thompson (Rancho Santa Margarita/Trabuco Hills HS), midfielder Ryan Futagaki (Fountain Valley/Fountain Valley HS), forward Cliff McKinley (Fountain Valley/Fountain Valley HS), forward Tim Pierce (Dana Point/Santa Margarita HS) and Zach Wells (Costa Mesa/Newport Harbor HS).
The Fountain Of Youth -- UCLA's youth movement has made quite an impression thus far in 2000. The nation's top-ranked team starts no less than six true freshmen regularly. Starting all four games this year have been goalkeeper DJ Countess, defenders Nelson Akwari and Alex Yi, midfielder/defender Leonard Griffin and forwards Adolfo Gregorio and Matt Taylor. Forward Cliff McKinley also has one start.
Dear Diary -- Senior defender and team captain Ryan Lee will share his thoughts during the season with a weekly diary on UCLA's official athletic website, www.uclabruins.com. In his latest entry, Lee talks about some changes on the team and about preparing to start regular play.
Briefly -- UCLA is averaging 3.75 goals a game, totalling 15 goals and 14 assists this season. McKinley Tennyson Jr. has accounted for 47% of the team's goal scoring ... UCLA holds the No. 1 ranking in the NSCAA, SoccerTimes.com and NCAA Men's Media Polls for the third consecutive week and should remain at No. 1 in the Soccer America poll for the second straight week ...Goalkeeper DJ Countess became the first true freshman in 20 years to start in goal for UCLA on opening day. Countess holds a 0.31 GAA with three shared shutouts and also picked up his first career point with an assist on the game-winning goal Sept. 17.