UC SAN DIEGO ATHLETIC UPDATE (August 25, 2008)
Release: Wednesday 08/24/2008 
by UCSD
Chris Gutierrez and the Men's Soccer team open the 2008 season at home Thursday vs. Hawaii-Hilo.
Chris Gutierrez and the Men's Soccer team open...
Courtesy: Jimmy Gekas/Sideline Studios

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS:

Thu., Aug. 28---Women’s Soccer---UCSD at Western Washington---4:00 PM
Thu., Aug. 28---Men’s Soccer---UCSD vs. Hawaii-Hilo---7:00 PM

Fri., Aug. 29---Women’s Volleyball---UCSD at Coyote Classic---Noon
Fri., Aug. 29---Cross Country---UCSD vs. Point Loma---3:00 PM

Sat., Aug. 30---Women’s Volleyball---UCSD at Coyote Classic---Noon & 5:00 PM
Sat., Aug. 30---Women’s Soccer---UCSD at Central Washington---4:00 PM
Sat., Aug. 30---Men’s Soccer---UCSD vs. Concordia---7:00 PM


HAWAII-HILO FIRST UP FOR MEN’S SOCCER
The Jon Pascale era of Men’s Soccer officially begins Thursday when the Tritons host Division II regional rival Hawaii-Hilo in the first of three home matches to open the season...NAIA Concordia visits two days later...Pascale, hired last spring to replace 26-year veteran mentor Derek Armstrong, who retired midway through the 2007 season, is a graduate of American University in Washington, DC and was an assistant coach at Stanford last fall.

He inherits a youngish team that went 5-9-3 overall a year ago and returns 18 players, just five of whom are seniors...His club was picked to finish third in the CCAA South Division in a pre-season poll of conference coaches...Cal State Dominguez Hills and Cal State L.A. were picked first and second respectively.

Senior goalkeeper Peter Akman and sophomore defender Jared Kukura were both All-CCAA choices in 2007 while senior Tommy Caplan (3) and junior Tony Choi (2) are the top two returning goal scorers.

WOMEN’S SOCCER OPENS 2008 CAMPAIGN ON ROAD
Brian McManus begins his 22nd season at the helm of the Women’s Soccer team when the Tritons travel to Washington to battle Western Washington (Thu.) and Central Washington (Sat.)...The coaching veteran sports 355 career victories and seven NCAA Championships...His 2007 team went 12-4-2 overall and won its eighth consecutive CCAA South Division crown...A spate of late season injuries led to first round losses in the first round of both the CCAA Tournament and the NCAA Regionals.

McManus will field perhaps the youngest team of his tenure at UCSD, one that includes 14 freshmen...Top returning players include first team All-CCAA picks Natasha Belak-Berger (Sr./forward) and Jessica McGovern (Sr./G) as well as senior defender Amanda Esquivel, who earned second team status as a junior...Belak-Berger netted seven goals last season and McGovern started all 18 games in goal.

Despite the inexperience, conference coaches voted UCSD the pre-season favorite to capture a ninth straight South Division title.

CROSS COUNTRY TESTS POINT LOMA IN FRIDAY DEBUT
Fresh off a nine-day high altitude training stint in Mammoth, Coach Nate Garcia’s Cross Country squad takes on cross town NAIA rival Point Loma Friday at 3:00 PM on the campus course.

Garcia’s men’s team seems poised for a breakthrough after scoring an NCAA Championship berth for the first time in four years in 2007...He returns virtually the entire roster, including the senior quartet of Jake LeVieux, Daniel Anderson, Kevin Klein and Greg Geldman as well as junior Jesse Morrill, the top runner much of last fall.

On the women’s side, senior Ashleigh Montgomery leads a comparatively inexperienced group...Gone are senior All-Americans Diane Dunn and Emily McGregor along with last year’s No. 3 runner Amanda Burkhardt...The Tritons posted a solid 11th place finish at last year’s NCAA Championship.

WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL FACES DEFENDING NCAA CHAMPS IN OPENER
Looking to replace five graduated seniors from a 2007 team that went 20-8 and made the NCAA Playoffs, fourth-year Head Coach Tom Black leads his Women’s Volleyball team into action for the first time in 2008, Friday and Saturday at the Cal State San Bernardino Coyote Classic...The Tritons, picked for second in the CCAA in a pre-season poll of conference coaches, will get a good gauge of where they are early, facing defending NCAA Division II champion and pre-season No. 1 Concordia-St. Paul in the tourney opener, followed by two other veteran opponentsóLewis (No. 15 pre-season)  and Shippensburg.

Black will be able to call on several talented returnees, including senior All-American outside hitter Rebecca Bailey and junior middle blocker Sylvia Schmidt who, like Bailey, was a first team All-CCAA honoree last year...UCSD opens its home schedule, hosting the Triton Invitational Tournament, next week.

HARPER TO HAVE VETERAN MEN’S WATER POLO SQUAD
Coach Denny Harper welcomed 23 players into pre-season camp for the Men’s Water Polo team Wednesday...Harper, now in his 28th season at UCSD, has 11 lettermen returning from the 2007 club in addition to a pair of senior redshirts---Adi Jerkovic and A.J. Kotanjian---who were standouts on the 2006 NCAA Final Four team. Also back are senior Chance Vermilyea and juniors Daniel Garcia, Steven Donohoe, Peter Gresham and Sean Roberts...The Tritons kick-off the season a week from Saturday when they host the two-day, 14-team Triton Invitational...UCSD has been ranked 14th nationally in pre-season polls.  Click here to see what Harper has to say about the team and the first tournament of the season.

TRITON OLYMPIC UPDATE
UC San Diego Athletics had a pair of Olympians in Beijing---triathlete Julie (Swail) Ertel and assistant men’s volleyball coach Ron Larsen.

After being among the leaders early in the race, Ertel slipped to 19th, finishing in 2 ho. 2:39.22...She was captain of the silver medal-winning USA Women’s Water Polo team at the 2000 Games in Sydney, Australia.

Larsen’s squad, meanwhile, was one of the major stories of the Games...Overcoming personal tragedy and several tight matches, the Americans won their first gold since 1988, defeating Brazil, 3-1, in Sunday’s championship contest.


For more information on Triton sports, check our website at http://ucsdtritons.com.

Sunday, December 21
W Basketball vs. Cal Poly Pomona
2:00 PM
UC San Diego
M Basketball vs. Cal Poly Pomona
4:00 PM
UC San Diego
Monday, December 29
Swimming & Diving at San Diego State (W)/Air Force/Incarnate Word
2:00 PM
San Diego
Friday, January 02
W Basketball vs. Cal State Stanislaus
5:30 PM
UC San Diego
M Basketball vs. Cal State Stanislaus
7:30 PM
UC San Diego
Saturday, January 03
Swimming & Diving vs. Grand Canyon/Incarnate Word/San Diego State (W)
11:00 AM
UC San Diego
W Basketball vs. Chico State
5:30 PM
UC San Diego
M Basketball vs. Chico State
7:30 PM
UC San Diego
Sunday, January 04
Swimming & Diving vs. Colorado Mesa/Missouri S&T (M)/San Jose State (W)
12:00 PM
UC San Diego
Wednesday, January 07
M Volleyball at Concordia
7:00 PM
Irvine
Friday, January 09
Fencing at North American Cup
8:00 AM
Salt Lake City, UT
W Basketball vs. Sonoma State
5:30 PM
UC San Diego
M Basketball vs. Sonoma State
7:30 PM
UC San Diego
Saturday, January 10
Swimming & Diving at Loyola Marymount (W)/CSU Bakersfield
12:00 PM
Los Angeles
M Volleyball at Grand Canyon
1:00 PM
Phoenix, AZ
2014 NCAA MWP Champs (mid-ad)
Birch Aquarium (mid-ad)