#23 UC Santa Barbara Men's Soccer 2014 Preview

UC Santa Barbara Gauchos

Overall Rank: #23
#2 Big West
#23 UC Santa Barbara Men's Soccer 2014 Preview
UC Santa Barbara Team Page


UCSB had a very good season in 2013, but it ended with a disappointing 1-0 loss to Penn State in the NCAA Tournament. The Gauchos won seven games in a row between late September and late October, but after that they won just one game, while tying three and losing two. That poor momentum certainly did not help them in the tournament and it remains to be seen if it will carry over into 2014.

2013 Record: 12-6-3, 7-0-3
2013 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Tim Vom Steeg

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Charlie Miller, Junior, F, 4
Assists: Drew Murphy, Sophomore, M, 8
Shots: Ismaila Jome, Sophomore, F, 31
Saves: Josh McNeely, Sophomore, GK, 57

Other Key Returnees: F Reed McKenna, M Paul Ehmann, M Marshall Cazares, M Duncan Backus, D Kevin Garcia-Lopez, D Nick DePuy

Key Losses: F Achille Campion, M Goffin Boyoko, M Fifi Baiden, D Peter Schmetz, D Matt Glodack, D Daniel Welsh

Between last year’s impressive group of freshmen and another big group of talented freshmen coming in this year, UCSB has a very young team and a team that is brimming with potential. Last year five freshmen were regulars in the starting lineup. Midfielders Drew Murphy and Ismaila Jome accounted for 15 of the team’s 32 assists. Jome only found the back of the net twice as a freshman, but he is a capable scorer too. Defender Nick DePuy and midfielder Paul Ehmann were also regular starters. The other freshman starter was keeper Josh McNeely. He allowed a mere 17 goals in 19 games. As this group grows up, UCSB is going to be more consistent and that will lead to more wins sooner rather than later. The incoming freshmen are highlighted by midfielders Adonis Amaya, Axel Mendez, Ryo Fujii and forward Dalton Pando.

Last year Coach Tim Vom Steeg had a core of senior leaders to work around. Losing Peter Schmetz in the back, Achille Campion up top and Goffin Boyoko and Fifa Baiden from the midfield will be difficult to deal with. Now there are just two seniors on the roster, part-time starting defender Kevin Garcia-Lopez and forward Reed McKenna.

Final Projection:
Coach Vom Steeg is making an effort to bring in freshmen and not plug holes with transfers. In the long run that will pay off, but for now it leaves the Gauchos with a lot of youth and inexperience on the roster. Consistency will be key for this group and it will be very interesting to see how they respond to a tough non-conference schedule that includes games against Furman, Northwestern, Stanford and UCLA.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Tournament

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 1.48 (66th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Goals-Against Average: 0.89 (41, 2)
Shutout Percentage: 0.29 (92, 3)
Save Percentage:  0.759 (101, 2)

Madness 2014 Men’s Soccer Recruit Rankings:
#26 Adonis Amaya
#55 Axel Mendez
#83 Dalton Pando
#89 Ryo Fujii
#101 Alex Liua


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