Sept. 21, 2010
Friday, September 24, 7:00 p.m. PT
Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-5-1) at University of San Francisco Dons (1-3-1)
Negoesco Field - San Francisco, Calif.
Live Stats, GameTracker, and internet stream available at GoMatadors.com
Sunday, September 26, 11:00 a.m. PT
Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-5-1) vs. Air Force Falcons (2-4)
Matador Soccer Field - Northridge, Calif.
GameTracker available at GoMatadors.com
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - The Cal State Northridge Matadors enter their final weekend before the start of Big West competition with games at San Francisco this Friday night, and their first home game in almost a month when they welcome the Air Force Falcons this Sunday afternoon. Kick-off for Friday's contest will take place at 7:00 p.m., Sunday's game will begin at 1:00 p.m.
FOLLOW THE MATADORS ONLINE THIS WEEKEND
Soccer fans looking to follow the progress of their soccer team during their time in San Francisco can do so by visiting GoMatadors.com this Friday evening. Links for GameTracker, Live Stats, and streaming video of the Northridge-San Francisco game will be available for fans to utilize. If you cannot make it to Matador Soccer Field for Sunday's game against Air Force, GameTracker will be available at GoMatadors.com.
A CLOSER LOOK AT SAN FRANCISCO
Friday's game at San Francisco will end a tough six-game road trip for Cal State Northridge, the longest stretch of consecutive road games since the 1999 season when that respective team also faced a road trip of similar length. Currently tied for sixth place in the West Coast Conference, the Dons will bring a three-game losing streak to Negoesco Field Friday night.
As tough as CSUN's schedule has been, San Francisco has been almost as difficult as they have faced three top-25 opponents, #9 Northwestern, #20 Cal State Bakersfield, and #21 California in their first five games. Currently at 1-3-1 for the season, the Dons have not scored a goal in their last three games as they last found the back of the net on September 5th in their final game of the Saint Mary's Tournament against Cal State Fullerton. San Francisco's game against the Matadors will serve as the midpoint of a stretch of games that sees the Dons competing in six of eight games on their home turf at Negoesco Field. With losses at home to Bakersfield, Stanford, and on the road at Cal, San Francisco will travel to San Jose State on Sunday before starting West Coast Conference play with three straight home games against Loyola Marymount, San Diego, and St. Mary's (Calif.).
A CLOSER LOOK AT AIR FORCE
Sunday's match against the Air Force Falcons will only be the third time the teams have faced one another in their respective histories, and the first non-neutral match-up ever. The first time these teams faced one another took place in 1993 when the Matadors defeated the Falcons 1-0 in the 1993 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Semifinals held at UCLA. Air Force evened the series three years later with their 2-0 victory over CSUN in a meeting that was originally scheduled as a Matador home game, but relocated to Titan Stadium in Fullerton, Calif. due to a last-minute scheduling conflict at North Campus Stadium.
Last Sunday's 4-0 home victory over Oral Roberts snapped a three-game losing streak for Air Force; the Falcons are now tied with UNLV for third place within the Mountain Division of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation with a 2-4 overall record. Sunday's game will be the final tune-up for both teams as each will commence league play on October 2nd when Air Force hosts Denver, with the Matadors traveling to Fullerton once again to face the Cal State Fullerton Titans.
MAKING THE MOST OF A FIRST IMPRESSION
One of 17 newcomers to the squad this season, freshman forward Sam Ball is making quite an impression within the Big West this season. Leading CSUN with two goals scored - an impressive feat as he has only taken four total shots and has capitalized on both shots on goal taken - Ball is tied for the conference lead with 1.50 points per game and 0.67 goals per game, ranks third with 1.33 points per game, and is tied for seventh with five other players with two goals scored after competing in three games so far this season.
THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE HOME
Friday's game at San Francisco will conclude a season-long six game road trip for the Matador men's soccer team. From CSUN's home-opener against San Diego, to Sunday's match against Air Force, 25 days will have passed between home games - the longest period of time between home games of any team in the Big West. Their current six-game road swing is the longest such stretch of games in the Davila era, tying a similar stretch of games the 1999 squad faced when they faced Cal State Sacramento and San Diego on the road before competing in two weekend tournaments in San Francisco and Nashville, Tenn.
NO NEED TO PANIC
Even though the Matadors are off to a tough start of the season, nobody can doubt the quality players Coach Davila has fielded so far as four of the six opponents Northridge has faced this season were ranked in the top-25 last season. Adding to an already challenging schedule is the fact that Northridge has only played one game at Matador Soccer Field, tying Cal Poly for the fewest number of home games played so far in 2010.
ANYONE, ANYTIME, ANYWHERE
Known for creating a tough schedule year after year, the Matador coaching staff have pieced together one of the most challenging schedules ever in an attempt to prepare the team for the challenges and rigors faced during conference play. Almost one-third of the games scheduled in 2010 will be against teams that were ranked in the top-25 nationally by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America in 2009. The list of opponents includes CSUN's season-opening game vs. San Diego (9/1), last season's College Cup runners-up Akron (9/17), San Francisco (9/24), cross-town rival UCLA (10/27), UC Santa Barbara (10/23), and UC Irvine (10/20).
REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS
One indication of the success sophomore goalkeeper Michael Abalos earned last season can be seen in the Matador record books as the San Juan Capistrano native earned a spot on four different lists with his numbers earned during his freshman season at Northridge. Abalos now shares tenth place with Louie Mata (1992-93) with his seven career victories, is fifth all-time with his 1.17 career goals against average, and is now tied for eighth all-time with Joel Entreken (1990-91) and his six career shutouts. His five clean sheets earned in 2009 is also the seventh-highest number of shutouts earned in a season, tying him with Joe Barton (2001) and Mike Littman (1989) and their respective single-season performances.
CSUN'S HOUSE OF HORRORS
Since relocating from North Campus Stadium to their current facility before the start of the 2002 season, Matador Soccer Field has presented a strong home-field advantage for the Matadors. In the 72 games played on-campus, CSUN possesses an overwhelming 49-15-8 record at home for a .736 winning percentage on their home turf.
WELCOME TO THE CENTURY CLUB
With four additional victories, head coach Terry Davila will become the fifth coach in Big West history to win 100 game as a member of the conference. Even though Davila enters the 2010 season with 110 career wins to his credit, the first 14 were earned as member of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. In 2001 the Matadors switched conference affiliation from the MPSF to the Big West, since then Davila's teams have compiled a 96-55-30 overall record (.613 pct.). With his first victory over a conference opponent in 2010 Davila will also become just the third head coach to win 50 or more conference games.
The 2010 Cal State Northridge men's soccer team received 27 points and were picked to finish fourth in the 2010 Big West Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches poll as announced by the league office in mid-August. Northridge was narrowly edged out by Cal Poly as the Mustangs earned 28 points to claim third place by a slim one point margin. Finishing in second place with 43 total points and one first place vote was UC Irvine, with UC Santa Barbara leading the way with 48 points and six first place votes. Cal State Fullerton's 22 points were enough to secure fifth place, with UC Davis and UC Riverside rounding out the poll in sixth and seventh place respectively with 17 and 11 points. This is the third straight season that Northridge was predicted to finish in fourth place; last season CSUN received 32 overall and one first place point en route to a 10-8-2 overall record, clinching a spot in the 2009 Big West Men's Soccer Postseason Tournament.
Tickets for all home men's matches are available through the CSUN Associated Students Ticket Office. Adults are $5, while youth 17 and under and seniors 60 and older are $3. There is also a $3 discounted rate ticket for CSUN Faculty/Staff, Military Service Personnel and CSUN Alumni Association Members with their respective identification cards.
CSUN students receive free admission to all home games with their CSUN I.D. Groups of 10 or more people may purchase $3 tickets, but tickets must be purchased a minimum of 24 hours in advance. For more information, call the A.S. Ticket Office at 818-677-2488.