#QuestFor8: No. 6 UC San Diego Begins Road to Pittsburgh With San Diego Derby Against Point Loma Saturday
TRITONS BEGIN #QUESTFOR8 AT HOME
The sixth-ranked University of California San Diego women's soccer program begins its pursuit of an eighth national championship, and first since 2001, this weekend. The Tritons (17-2-1) are the top seed in the West Region for the second year in a row, and thus are getting set for an NCAA Championship second-round home matchup on Saturday, Nov. 10. Kickoff at Triton Soccer Stadium on North Campus in La Jolla is set for 12 p.m. The opponent will be San Diego rival Point Loma (16-1-1), the fourth-seeded Pacific West Conference champion, which edged fifth-seeded Chico State, 2-1, in the first round in La Jolla on Thursday afternoon. The tournament began on Thursday with 56 teams, and will conclude Dec. 1 in Pittsburgh, Pa. The California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) double champion Tritons and Sea Lions will be facing off for the fourth straight year. UC San Diego is a perfect 4-0 all-time against Point Loma, with an aggregate score of 7-0. The Tritons are a perfect 10-0 at home in 2018, and 29-0-1 over their last 30 in La Jolla since Sept. 11, 2016. Saturday will definitively be UC San Diego's last home contest of the season, and fans' last opportunity to see seniors Summer Bales, Megumi Barber and Mary Reilly, and potentially fourth-year juniors Kelsey Kimball and Angelica Ramos, on campus. Point Loma, meanwhile, is a perfect 10-0 away from home. Both teams are automatic NCAA qualifiers from their respective conferences.
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP TICKET INFORMATION
General admission for Saturday's NCAA Championship second-round match is $10, with the entry fee $5 for seniors (65 and up), students (with identification) and youth (ages 2-12). Children under the age of two are free. Tickets can be purchased at the venue beginning at 11 a.m. Parking is free all day. By University policy, pets are not allowed at Triton Soccer Stadium, with the exception of service animals.
FIRST 300 UC SAN DIEGO STUDENTS FREE!
The first 300 UC San Diego students, with identification, will receive free entry into Saturday's NCAA Championship second-round match with Point Loma, courtesy of Triton Tide.
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP ON UCSDTRITONS.TV
Saturday's NCAA Championship second-round match will feature a live video stream, free to all, on UCSDtritons.tv. The broadcast is in high definition and can be viewed from smartphones and tablets alongside desktop and laptop computers. It will be archived. Fans can access live coverage from the Schedule/Results page, or by clicking on the links above. Starting lineups, live in-game updates and other news and notes can be found on the UC San Diego Athletics Twitter handle (@UCSDtritons). You can also check out in-match Instagram stories on the UC San Diego Athletics (@ucsdtritons) and Triton Women's Soccer (@ucsdwsoc) accounts.
UC SAN DIEGO IN THE UNITED SOCCER COACHES POLL
• Nov. 6: 6 (1st in West)
• Oct. 30: 10 (2nd in West)
• Oct. 23: 6 (1st in West)
• Oct. 16: 11 (2nd in West)
• Oct. 9: 10 (2nd in West)
• Oct. 2: 1 (1st in West)
• Sept. 25: 1 (1st in West)
• Sept. 18: 2 (1st in West)
• Sept. 11: 2 (1st in West)
• Sept. 4: 2 (1st in West)
• Preseason: 5
A LOOK BACK AT LAST WEEK
UC San Diego rolled to a fourth consecutive CCAA Tournament title last weekend, doing so for the second straight year as the top-seeded host, to extend the program's record haul now to 12 tourney banners in all. The Tritons routed No. 4 seed San Francisco State, 5-0, on Friday afternoon through five different goal-scorers, with Maddy Samilo providing a career-high four points from a goal and two assists. Mary Reilly and Natalie Saddic, the CCAA Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year, each scored in the first half to give UC San Diego a 2-0 lead at the break. In Sunday's final, a rematch of last year's thriller, the Tritons trotted out to a 2-0 halftime lead over No. 3 seed Sonoma State thanks to a first career two-goal brace by Megumi Barber. Reilly added a third in the second half. UC San Diego was making an 18th CCAA Tournament appearance, more than any other current member, in its 19th season in the conference. The Tritons have now won nine straight league tourney games, by an aggregate score of 26-5. Barber was the Most Valuable Offensive Player, with Saddic repeating as the Most Valuable Defensive Player. Reilly, Samilo, Summer Bales and Kelsey Kimball also made the All-Tournament Team. UC San Diego has now won the event all five times it has hosted the tournament (2001, 2006, 2008, 2017, 2018). The Tritons are an undefeated 11-0-1 in CCAA finals, lifting the banner after all 12 appearances.
The Tritons are in search of an eighth national title. The first five came during the NCAA Division III days, with the last two coming in UC San Diego's first two seasons at the Division II level (2000, 2001). UC San Diego is making its 16th Division II tourney appearance in its 19th year since moving to Division II, and starting a milestone 30th NCAA run in all. The Tritons take a record of 26-11-4 (.683) in NCAA Division II Championship games heading into Saturday. They have seven Division II West Region crowns, with last year's their first since 2012. UC San Diego previously was 37-8-2 (.809) in 14 NCAA appearances in Division III.
MARQUEE MATCHUP UP TOP
Saturday's match will feature a showdown of the top two forwards statistically in the West Region in UC San Diego senior Mary Reilly and Point Loma junior newcomer Julia Glaser. Reilly leads the West in total goals, with a career-high 15, with Glaser right behind her, having tallied her 14th as the game-winner in Thursday's first-round contest. Glaser and Reilly are also 1-2 in the West Region in game-winning goals, with Glaser's Thursday decider her 10th, which is tied for second in the nation. Reilly is at a career-high seven. Glaser was an All-Mountain West Conference First Team selection at Fresno State with a program-record 16 goals a season ago. She is the PacWest Player and Newcomer of the Year, while Reilly is the CCAA Offensive Player of the Year.
UC San Diego is an undefeated 29-0-1 over its last 30 home matches, dating back to a 1-0 defeat to then-sixth-ranked Colorado School of Mines on Sept. 11, 2016. The Tritons wound up 13-0-1 in La Jolla in 2017. They were winners of 19 straight at home ahead of a 1-1 draw with UC-Colorado Springs in last year's national quarterfinals, eliminated via penalty-kick tiebreaker. Thirteen marked UC San Diego's most home wins since going 15-1 in La Jolla in 2001 en route to winning its second straight Division II national title, at Triton Soccer Stadium. The only other times the Tritons have completed a home season unbeaten in their Divison II era, were 2006 (11-0-1), 2002 (9-0-1) and 2000 (12-0). Around that 2016 meeting with Mines, UC San Diego is 37-0-2 in La Jolla since its last home loss to an unranked team, a 3-2 overtime defeat to Cal State San Bernardino on Sept. 20, 2015.
Eleven Tritons earned postseason recognition from the CCAA, led by Mary Reilly and Natalie Saddic sweeping the two main awards for CCAA Offensive Player of the Year and CCAA Defensive Player of the Year, respectively. Saddic is the league's first two-time defensive winner. Summer Bales joined them on the All-CCAA First Team, with Megumi Barber and Caitlin McCarthy earning second-team spots. Honorable mentions went to Michelle Baddour, Kelsey Kimball, Angelica Ramos, Marissa Ray, Maddy Samilo and Natalie Widmer. Eleven Tritons were also honored two years ago, after a perfect 12-0 league slate. Reilly will finish her great career a perfect four-for-four in All-CCAA First Team selections.
UC San Diego is 34-2-1 over its last 37 conference matches, and 45-2-2 in its last 49 against CCAA foes in all competitions. The Tritons were 28-0-1 in their last 29 CCAA games and 37-0-2 over the previous 39 contests against CCAA opposition, prior to the Oct. 3 loss at Cal State San Marcos. Both those streaks began after another 1-0 CCAA road loss, at Sonoma State, on Oct. 18, 2015. UC San Diego had won 23 straight league matches prior to a 1-1 draw at Cal State East Bay last Oct. 26, and 29 straight games against CCAA foes before a scoreless tie at Cal State San Marcos last Oct. 21. The Tritons held a 93-15 scoring advantage and trailed in only three of those 39 matches. In 2016, UC San Diego completed the league slate unbeaten and untied for the first time since joining the CCAA in 2000, at a perfect 12-0. It marked the first such effort by a CCAA squad since Sonoma State went 14-0 in 1998. The Tritons went on to win both of their CCAA Tournament games, 2-0 and 1-0, to give them a 14-0 mark against CCAA foes, outscoring them 35-2 during the regular season and 38-2 overall. UC San Diego followed that up with a 10-0-1 ledger in 2017 to become the first team in CCAA women's soccer history to post back-to-back unbeaten league slates. The 29-game run is a league record.
UC San Diego's 27-game (23-0-4) unbeaten run, a new record for its Division II history (since 2000), was one of several lengthy streaks snapped by the Tritons' 1-0 loss at Cal State San Marcos on Oct. 3. The overall streak had matched the all-time program standard, with a previous 27-gamer (24-0-3) from Oct. 12, 1992, through Nov. 7, 1993. Both those years ended in Division III third-place finishes.
ATOP THE POLL
UC San Diego ascended to the top of the United Soccer Coaches Division II national poll on Sept. 25. It marked the Tritons' first No. 1 ranking since Sept. 2, 2002. They held onto that spot for the Oct. 2 listing, before a road split moved them back down to No. 10. Triton great and current coach Kristin Jones was an All-American junior forward on that 2012 team, which began the year as the two-time defending Division II national champion. When UC San Diego lined up against Sonoma State on Sept. 28, it was the first time it had taken the field as the No. 1 team in the land, since Sept. 2, 2002, when the lone goal in a 1-0 season-opening home win over Tusculum (TN), came from Jones in the 71st minute. Reigning national champion Central Missouri had its 32-game win streak (perfect 26-0 for first crown last year) snapped at Missouri Western in St. Joseph, Mo., on Sept. 21, 1-0, moving then-undefeated UC San Diego up from No. 2.
Twice this season, including Oct. 16 for her two game-winners on the road, fourth-year senior striker Mary Reilly swept the United Soccer Coaches Division II national and CCAA Player of the Week awards. She has three of each for her career. The first one in 2018 came on Sept. 18 after Reilly's five-goal outburst in a pair of wins to open league play at home. Her four-goal effort (watch here) in the 6-1 romp over Cal State Monterey Bay on Sept. 14, matched her career high, and marked her top output at Triton Soccer Stadium, having previously hit for four as a freshman at Cal State Dominguez Hills on Oct. 2, 2015. The performance included a first-half hat trick in a span of just 19:27, and bumped Reilly up over former strike partner (2015-17) Katie O'Laughlin (37) as the program's all-time goals leader for its NCAA Division II era, since 2000. The Chula Vista product began the year tied for 11th on the all-time chart, and is now tied for fourth with 48 career tallies, while fifth in total points with 117. The milestone 40th was the opening winner in a 2-0 non-conference home defeat of Cal State San Marcos (9/22). Reilly leads the CCAA for a fourth straight year in shots (105), as well as in goals (15), points (32) and game-winning goals (seven). She has 43 more shots than partner Megumi Barber (62) in second. Reilly got up over 300 shots for her career in that CSUSM match, now at 372. Her 105 attempts this year is a career best.
SADDIC A STAR
Redshirt junior Natalie Saddic may not get the statistical recognition from her holding central midfield position, but the first-year Triton co-captain is again the anchor of the nationally-ranked team. The 2017 unanimous All-American finally came off the field for the first time in 2018, for the final 7:51 of the first half at Cal State San Marcos on Oct. 3. She has played 1778 out of 1820 minutes, and guided the team to 10 shutouts through 20 matches, including six in a row from Oct. 7-25. Offensively, Saddic helped set up both goals in a 2-0 home victory over city rival Cal State San Marcos (9/22), gaining credit for her first collegiate assist on the latter tally, and followed that up with her initial goal of 2018 to open the scoring in a 3-1 home win over Humboldt State (9/30). She provided the assist on the decisive goal in back-to-back home games on Oct. 19 and Oct. 21 with lengthy runs. Saddic added a goal and an assist in the CCAA Tournament. She has started 59 consecutive matches for UC San Diego.
SUMMER THE PROVIDER
Fourth-year senior winger Summer Bales, a first-time co-captain in 2018, leads the CCAA in assists for a second straight season, currently alone at the top with her nine helpers. That total eclipses the Temecula native's previous career best of seven from 2017. She has started the last 43 games in a row, going back to her first collegiate start in the 2016 West Region final in Golden, Colo. Bales has 24 career assists, the most of any current Triton.
Senior striker Megumi Barber was named the CCAA Player of the Week for the first time in her four-year career on Oct. 2. She provided assists on the Tritons' opening goals in back-to-back wins over No. 24 Sonoma State (9/28) and Humboldt State (9/30), before also scoring the late clincher in a 3-1 victory over the Jacks. Starting for the first time in her career, Barber has laid claim to some memorable, terrific goals for the Tritons. Of her 13 career tallies, six in a row had been right-footed strikes from distance, prior to a left-footed chip from inside the penalty area against HSU. A pair of Barber's recent strikes were also from outside the penalty area, with the left-footed capper from the very edge of the 18 against Cal State LA (10/19), and a deflected right-footer from 25 yards at Stanislaus State (10/25). Most recently, she collected her first collegiate two-goal brace in the CCAA final (11/4), with the second a 25-yard rocket that proved to be her first winner of 2018. She has a career-best seven scores on the year. Click here for the midfield strike at Division I Hawai'i (9/7), here for the free-kick banger against Cal State Monterey Bay (9/14), and here for her incredible winner against Sonoma State (11/4).
Between a pair of 1-0 road defeats in CCAA action, at Cal State San Marcos on Oct. 3 and Chico State on Oct. 27 to conclude the regular season, UC San Diego posted six straight wins, all in shutout fashion. The loss in San Marcos was the Tritons' first in over a full calendar year. The shutout streak stretched to 617:29. Four of those six contests were scoreless at halftime, with UC San Diego winners coming after the interval. The first three were thanks to Mary Reilly, the CCAA Offensive Player of the Year.
Sophomores Michelle Baddour, Alexis Kirson and transfer Mia Bonifazi, along with true freshmen Ashlynn Kolarik, Christina Oddone and Marissa Ray, have notched their first collegiate goals this season. Kolarik, Oddone and Ray have been joined by Sophia Bruno, Emily Killeen, Hana Law and Lucy Tang as true freshmen to play their first collegiate games. Bonifazi made her first Triton appearance in the opener. Sydney Davey, a third-year Triton who had to sit out each of her first two seasons through separate injuries, earned her college debut in the CCAA opener against Cal State Monterey Bay.
The Tritons have used the exact same starting lineup in 18 of 20 contests, the lone exceptions being true freshmen Hana Law and Lucy Tang earning their first collegiate starts at right back and right midfield at Cal Poly Pomona (10/14) and at Chico State (10/27), respectively ... UC San Diego surrendered just 15 goals during the recently-ended 27-game unbeaten run, with an own goal, penalty kick and free kick among them, and posted 14 shutouts ... The Tritons had come out on the right side of 17 straight one-goal decisions prior to the 1-0 loss at CSUSM on Oct. 3, finishing 12-1 in such games a year ago, and currently at 10-2 this season ... The Tritons had nine 1-0 victories during their 27-game undefeated run, and have won 13 times with that score line since the start of the 2017 campaign, including six this year ... At the conclusion of a fourth-ever trip to Hawai'i, UC San Diego is an unbeaten 7-0-1 on O'ahu, outscoring opponents, 16-3 ... The Tritons' 2-1 victory at Hawai'i on Sept. 7 marked their first date with a Division I program in over two decades, since a 3-0 home win, also over UH on Oct. 19, 1997 ... Prior to the meeting with Hawai'i Hilo on Sept. 9, UC San Diego had last held an opponent without a single shot attempt in a 2-0 home decision over Cal State LA on Oct. 14, 2016 ... UC San Diego is 17-1-1 in season openers in its Division II era (since 2000), having suffered a lone defeat in 2014 at Seattle Pacific and outscored its opponents, 12-2, in four consecutive wins since ... The Tritons are 11-8 in CCAA openers, with three straight wins through comfortable decisions at Cal State San Marcos (4-0) in 2016, vs. Chico State (3-0) a year ago, and vs. CSUMB (6-1) on Sept. 14 ... Now-three-time reigning CCAA regular-season champion UC San Diego was again the preseason favorite to retain its crown, with 136 points and seven first-place votes.
UC San Diego's 29-player 2018 roster has just three seniors in fourth-year team members Summer Bales, Megumi Barber and Mary Reilly ... Kelsey Kimball and Angelica Ramos are both listed as redshirt juniors, also in their fourth year out of high school, and were recognized on Senior Day, but have one season of eligibility remaining ... Bales and Natalie Saddic are first-time team co-captains in 2018 ... Thirteen newcomers have joined the program, including 12 true freshmen ... Seven players are from San Diego, in Saddic (San Diego/Torrey Pines HS), Michelle Baddour (San Diego/University City HS), Megumi Barber (San Diego/Mt. Carmel HS), Caitlin McCarthy (Carlsbad/Carlsbad HS), Christina Oddone (Carlsbad/Carlsbad HS), Mary Reilly (Chula Vista/Hilltop HS) and Maddy Samilo (Rancho Bernardo/Rancho Bernardo HS) ... Sophomore forwards Mia Bonifazi (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) and Alexis Kirson (Las Vegas, Nev.) are the only two Tritons from outside of California ... Kristin Jones (Oceanside HS), a two-time national champion and two-time All-American as one of the greatest players to ever come through the storied UC San Diego program, is in her 19th straight season as a Triton player or coach.
CCAA TOURNAMENT REMAINS IN LA JOLLA
UC San Diego was the proud host of the 2018 CCAA Tournament semifinals and finals for the second consecutive year and fifth time in all. Two women's and two men's semifinals were contested at Triton Soccer Stadium on Friday, Nov. 2, with the two finals on Sunday, Nov. 4. In all five instances that UC San Diego has served as the host, the Triton women have won the event, in 2001, 2006, 2008, 2017, and now 2018. The women's champion once again earned the CCAA's automatic berth into the NCAA Championship.
CCAA FORMAT UNCHANGED
For the fifth year in a row, the CCAA slate consisted of a single round robin, with all teams meeting once for 12 matches total, and the top six sides (based on most points; three points for a league win, one for a tie) in the final regular-season standings qualifying for the 2018 CCAA Tournament.
2018 SEASON OUTLOOK
UC San Diego is led offensively and defensively by Mary Reilly (Chula Vista/Hilltop HS) and Natalie Saddic (San Diego/Torrey Pines HS), respectively. Reilly began a fourth and final season up top with 33 career goals, and as the CCAA's shots leader by a wide margin in each of her first three years. Saddic is back at holding central midfielder after a rash of injuries forced her to center back for the 2017 postseason. The third-year transfer from UC Davis was a unanimous All-American, and the CCAA Defensive Player of the Year and CCAA Tournament Most Valuable Defensive Player last fall. Joining Reilly as fourth-year Tritons are winger Summer Bales, forward Megumi Barber (San Diego/Mt. Carmel HS), and Kelsey Kimball, who takes over at center back after sitting out the entire 2017 season through injury. Barber is Reilly's new strike partner. True sophomores Delaney Whittet and Natalie Widmer return around Kimball at left and right back, respectively. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Angelica Ramos, the 2017 CCAA Newcomer of the Year, also is back from injury, with sophomore Katie Wilkes having taken over for the three NCAA Championship matches last November after Ramos left the CCAA final with a season-ending injury. Caitlin McCarthy (Carlsbad/Carlsbad HS) remains in central midfield, with fellow true sophomores and locals Michelle Baddour (San Diego/University City HS) and Maddy Samilo (Rancho Bernardo/Rancho Bernardo HS) slotting into the starting spots in central midfield and on the right wing, respectively. Baddour has taken over the No. 10 shirt.
UC San Diego went 17-2-3 overall and an unbeaten 10-0-1 in the CCAA a year ago. The season ended with a 17-game undefeated streak (14-0-3) as the Tritons played to a 1-1 home draw with UC-Colorado Springs in the national quarterfinals, and were eliminated via penalty-kick tiebreaker. That was after a second successive showdown with Western Washington in the West Region final, this one going to UC San Diego in front of the home crowd, 2-0, to complete its treble. The regular-season champion Tritons won the CCAA Tournament for a third straight and record 11th time, as the top-seeded host. Sonoma State was the opponent in a thrilling final, which UC San Diego rallied to take 4-3 thanks to Natalie Saddic's headed goal with 34 seconds left.
ABOUT THE SEA LIONS
Point Loma (16-1-1, 10-0-1 PacWest) is receiving votes in the latest United Soccer Coaches national poll. The Sea Lions are in their third NCAA Championship in five years since joining the NCAA Division II, having produced back-to-back PacWest titles in 2014 and 2015. This season, they breezed through the league slate at an undefeated 10-0-1, outscoring opponents 21-1, for a third crown. Point Loma's 2-1 victory over Chico State in Thursday's first round in La Jolla was the program's first NCAA Championship victory. Point Loma swept all six major PacWest awards, with leading scorer Julia Glaser the Player and Newcomer of the Year, Emma Hinson the Freshman and Goalkeeper of the Year, and Keagan Bolibol the Defender of the Year. Kristi Kiely, the PacWest Coach of the Year, is in her first season in charge of the Sea Lions.
These two programs have officially met just four times, UC San Diego winning all four without surrendering a goal over the 360 minutes. The Tritons won 3-0 at home in the 2017 opener for both teams, and took a 2-0 road decision on Sept. 6, 2016, thanks to second-half goals by Katie O'Laughlin and Summer Bales. They were 1-0 victors in La Jolla on Sept. 5, 2015, through an 88th-minute strike from Mary Reilly. UC San Diego previously earned another 1-0 home triumph all the way back on Oct. 28, 2000, during its first season in Division II. The Tritons went on to become national champions that year, with Point Loma still in the NAIA. These days, the schools are Division II West Region rivals. They faced off in Point Loma on Sept. 16, 2014, but with UC San Diego leading 1-0 in the 57th minute, the match was halted by lightning. Unable to be completed, it was ruled a no contest.
HOMECOMING AND HALL OF FAME WEEKEND
During UC San Diego Homecoming weekend, Oct. 19-21, all-time leading scorer Heather (Mauro) Hilliard (1986-89) was inducted into the UC San Diego Athletics Hall of Fame. She is the third member of the women's soccer program to be so honored, after Ele Johnson (Class of 2013) and Julia Cuder (2014).
On Nov. 27, 2017, UC San Diego was officially invited to become a member of the NCAA Division I Big West Conference. The Tritons will begin a four-year reclassification period starting in the fall of 2020. They will play a full Big West schedule that season and will be eligible for the NCAA Championship in men's volleyball, men's and women's water polo, and fencing. For the 2024-25 academic year, all sports will be eligible to compete in Big West and NCAA Division I championships. Read the full press release here.
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Should UC San Diego advance past Saturday, they would qualify for a third successive West Region final, as the reigning champion. The game would take place at the venue of the top seed remaining in the South Central Region. That team heading into the weekend, is fourth-ranked Colorado School of Mines, located in Golden, Colo. A national quarterfinal would also take place there, with those dates likely to be Friday, Nov. 16, and Sunday, Nov. 18.
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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For complete coverage and information regarding UC San Diego Athletics, follow the Tritons online at UCSDtritons.com and through social media on Twitter (@UCSDtritons), Instagram (@ucsdtritons) and Facebook (UCSDtritons). For more information on UC San Diego Women's Soccer, follow on Instagram (@ucsdwsoc).