Oct. 5, 2004
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The Loyola Marymount University men's soccer team, winners of three straight, will head to Northern California this weekend to face San Francisco and St. Mary's. The Lions are a perfect 2-0 to start conference play, securing wins over Gonzaga and #20 Portland last weekend.
Scouting San Francisco
The Dons are currently 5-2-1, falling to #4 Santa Clara in their last game, and tying #1 UC Santa Barbara last Friday. It's USF's best start since 1991. Aaron Chandler leads the Dons with six goals and one assist. Chandler leads the WCC in points and goals and was named the WCC Co-Player of the Month. Jordan Keyes has two goals and three assists on the year, while Al Bedrossian has six points (2 goals, 2 assist). Mark Meleady has played six games in goal for USF, recording a 0.95 GAA and a .625 save percentage.
Scouting St. Mary's
The Gaels are 2-3-3 and opened conference play with a 1-0 loss to Santa Clara last weekend. St. Mary's has struggled to score all season, scoring just 0.67 goals per game. Derek Youpel and Anthony Butler both have two goals to lead SMC. Matt Fitzgerald was named the WCC Freshman of the Year in 2003 and leads the Gaels in shots this season with 17. Brian Mason has played all 780 minutes in net for St. Mary's and has a 0.92 GAA and a .830 save percentage.
Senior Matt Kovar was named the men's soccer WCC Player of the Week for the week ending October 3, 2004. The defender led the LMU defense to two consecutive shutouts over Gonzaga and #20 Portland to open the conference schedule with a 2-0 record.
The defense limited Gonzaga to just three shots on goal in Friday's 2-0 win. Kovar helped the defense contain reigning WCC Player of the Year, Alejandro Salazar, to just one shot in the 2-0 win over Portland. He also assisted on the game-winning goal in the Portland win. This is the first time in LMU men's soccer history that the Lions have opened conference play with two wins.
This is the second time that Kovar has been honored as Player of the Week by the WCC. He earned the same honor on November 17, 2003 after scoring a goal in the 3-0 win over Santa Clara.
A Look Back
Freshmen took care of most of the scoring this weekend for the Lions, as Tyler Mehl and Nick Blanco scored three of the team's four goals in the 2-0 wins over Gonzaga and Portland.
Against the Zags, Mehl put the Lions onto the board at 16:42. After Junior Ybarra drove a free kick into a crowd in front of the Gonzaga goal, Mehl was able to deflect the ball into the net for his first score of the game. He gave the Lions a cushion about 20 minutes later. Danny Williams headed a pass fron Diego Barrera toward the Bulldog goal, but Gonzaga goalkeeper Sean Sosnovec was able to knock the ball down. He could not control the ball, and Mehl took advantage, blasting a shot into the left side of the goal. Shaun Kalnasy recorded his first shutout of the season, and improves to 3-0-1 as the LMU starting goalkeeper.
Against Portland, LMU controlled play for most of the game. LMU had outstanding ball control, and its forwards were able to elude the taller Portland defenders. In the 36th minute, Matt Kovar sent in a beautiful cross from the right side. Danny Williams directed the ball towards the goal, and Portland's Luis Robles was able to block the ball away. In the midst of the chaos in front of the goal, Nick Blanco was able to kick the ball into the back of the net for his first career goal. After taking a 1-0 lead into halftime, the Lions struck again early in the second half. The offense put on a passing clinic, as forwards Blanco and Bobby Burling threaded the Pilot defense before Sean Rhynard put the ball into the back of the net for his second goal of the season. Robert Flores made seven saves for his first win of the season in goal and his second shutout.
A Look Ahead
The Lions will play their final non-conference game as they travel across the country to face Wake Forest on Friday, October 15th. The Demon Deacons are ranked #18 in this week's Soccer America poll. Things won't get any easier when the Lions return to California as they will host #4 Santa Clara on Sunday, October 17th at 3:00pm.
Strength of Schedule
LMU will play a home and away game against each WCC opponent this season, making their usually difficult schedule even more difficult. Four of LMU's past opponents have been ranked in the top 25, and upcoming opponents Santa Clara, Portland and Wake Forest have all been ranked in the top 25.
Follow the Lions all season with GameTracker for men's soccer. During any LMU home game you can get the up to the minute score, as well as updated game stats and a play by play. For more information, go to www.LMULions.com.
The Lions finished their preseason European Trip with a 4-1 record. Armando Melendez led the Lions with 15 points (5 goals, 5 assists) while freshman Diego Berrera had an impressive trip with two goals and three assists. Diego Souza finished with seven points for LMU (2 goals, 3 assists) and Aneesh Rana scored three goals.
LMU Head Coach Paul Krumpe
Success has become an expected part of the LMU men's soccer program. The reason: Head Coach Paul Krumpe.
Entering his seventh season as a head coach in the collegiate ranks, Krumpe has guided the Lion soccer program into the national spotlight. Under Krumpe's tutelage, the Lions have made three straight appearances to the NCAA College Cup, with the last two squads playing and beating the nation's best.
The 2003 squad finished the season at 12-7-1, earning a top-16 seed in the NCAA College Cup and a first-round bye. That season was a continuation of the 2002 campaign, as they posted a record breaking season under Krumpe. The Lions earned a program-best 15 wins (15-4-2 Overall/4-2-0 WCC) while collecting their first ever postseason win with a 1-0 victory over Cal State Northridge in Round 1 of the tournament. In his last five seasons at LMU, Krumpe and the Lions have collected an impressive 54 wins, the most by any coach in five seasons in LMU soccer history.
Krumpe's eye for recruiting extremely gifted and talented players continues to show year after year. He had three players earn All-American honors, including a pair of NSCAA All-Americans in 2002, Arturo Torres and Andres Murriagui. In addition, in six seasons he has coached 34 players who have earned All-West Coast Conference honors. His guidance off the field is just as evident, coaching the program's first ever Academic All-American in Jeff Kovar (2002).
In addition, Krumpe's ties with the professional ranks has also been impressive. Three former Lions have gone on to play in the MLS, as Torres, Murriagui and Michael Erush have all signed to play with MLS programs.
Krumpe, who helped guide UCLA to the 1997 NCAA Men's Soccer National Championship as an assistant coach, took control of the program at LMU in 1998. After a long and storied career as both a player and an assistant coach with the Bruins, he was announced as LMU's third head coach in as many seasons on April 2, 1998.
Prior to accepting the Lions' head coaching position, Krumpe spent three seasons as an assistant at UCLA. As a major contributor to one of the most successful programs in the nation, he helped guide the Bruins to a record of 56-9-1. During those seasons, UCLA made three NCAA regional appearances and won the 1997 national championship. That squad also featured four players who were selected in the Major League Soccer (MLS) collegiate draft, the most from any university in 1997.