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UCSB Moves Up a Spot In National Poll

Bookmark and Share Printer Friendly Mar. 11, 2009

Monora SethBaltimore, MD - The Gauchos moved up to the 2nd spot in the USL WDIA National Top 25 Poll released earlier today. UCSB rode the results of two wins over the weekend where the Gauchos had success on the road against the Chico State Wildcats and the Santa Clara Broncos to improve to 10-2 overall. Chico State was ranked 20th when then 3rd ranked UCSB played them to a 12-6 win with a 6-2 second half performance on Saturday. Santa Clara was ranked 2nd when UCSB over-achieved and stunned them 12-4 in the long grass at Santa Clara on Sunday. UCSB had one of their best second half performances against a Top 10 team when they outscored the Broncos 6-0. This continued a stretch of games where UCSB has scored at least 6 goals each half for nine consecutive halves, dating back to the second half of their monumental come-from-behind win at then 6th ranked UCLA on February 20th.

The offense keeps scoring but it's the UCSB defense that's made the Gauchos a strong second half team. The UCSB offense produces at a fairly regular pace among games and halves. This includes games against good teams since 10 of 12 opponents so far have been ranked in the Top 20 and UCSB has a Strength of Schedule rating placing them 4th in the country in that category. UCSB opponents have discovered it's a tough task keeping up with the Gauchos in the second half and the stingy UCSB defense has had a big hand in that.

The Gauchos had a shot at the first place spot in the poll when top ranked Colorado lost 8-5 to then 7th ranked Colorado State over the weekend but the pollsters left the Buffalos in the top spot. Votes were divided as Colorado, a former unanimous choice when they were undefeated at 11-0, got 8 of 13 first place votes. UCSB picked up 3 first place votes and Michigan picked up the remaining 2 first place votes. Voter point totals among the three teams were 313, 308 and 295, respectively.

"That's all so close it is beyond worrying about," said second year head coach Paul Ramsey when he saw the voting and point total results. "A top three seed is within our reach for the post-season," continued Ramsey, "so that's nice but it is also something we can't really worry about."

"We need to focus on draw controls and ground balls at Pepperdine this weekend."

Pepperdine is 6-1 and ranked 17th in the WDIA poll and UCSB faces them in Malibu at 1:00pm on Saturday. In another poll, this one released today by the Western Women's Lacrosse League, UCSB was a unanimous choice for first place in the league ranking for the Top 10 of the WWLL First Division. The Gauchos are 7-0 against WWLL teams and received 100 of 100 possible points.

The UCSB 'B' Team was ranked 3rd in the WWLL Second Division poll, behind Sonoma State and Cal Poly SLO 'B'.  They have a match-up on Saturday at home with the club from UC Berkeley. A win seals the deal for a WWLL D2 Championship play-off spot. UCSB 'B' is 9-3 overall but 1-2 in the ultra competitive WWLL North D2 Division with just this game against UC Berkeley remaining toward standings. The Bears are 6-4 overall and also 1-2 in the division. Both teams have experienced the same results against common opponents. Both are undefeated against WWLL South D2 teams in inter-region games and both teams get the nod over all but the automatic qualifier team from South D2 when compared to programs from that division.


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