No. 8 Santa Clara Faces Bay Area Rival Friday

By, Carolyn Linck '11

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara University's women's soccer team looks to build on last weekend's opening victories Friday afternoon when they face the 18th-ranked University of California Golden Bears at 4 p.m.  The game, which will be held at Edwards Stadium on Cal's campus, is free to attend and is the first of six matches SCU will play against nationally ranked opponents this season.

The Broncos (2-0-0) moved up one spot to No. 8 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America poll after winning their first two home games against San Diego State University and San Jose State University. 

Senior Maxine Goynes scored in the 22nd minute and junior goalkeeper Bianca Henninger posted a shutout as SCU beat SDSU 1-0 on Friday, August 20. Two late goals allowed the Broncos to prevail in a 2-1 victory over local rival San Jose State. Anessa Patton was named to CollegeSoccer360.com's list of Prime Time Performers for her game-winner in the 86th minute.

The Golden Bears (1-0-1) dropped four spots in the national polls from No. 14 to 18 after going 1-0-1 in their opening weekend of play – both at home.  Cal beat Loyola Marymount University 2-1 on Friday, August 20, but tied unranked UC Irvine 2-2 on Sunday, August 22.  Cal was led by senior forward Alex Morgan who had 15 shots and two goals on the weekend.

Historically the Golden Bears have bested the Broncos, holding the advantage in the all-time series (17-13-4).  In their last meeting on October 4, 2009, at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara the Bears and Broncos tied 1-1 after two overtimes.

Both Cal and Santa Clara are perennial national title contenders in women's soccer.  The Bears have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 16 times, advancing to the second round last season.  The Broncos, who have played in 20 NCAA Tournaments and have made it to the College Cup Final Four 10 times under head coach Jerry Smith, advanced to third round last season.