The 49ers will head to 17th-ranked Santa Clara for an NCAA Tournament first-round game on Saturday.
Nov. 7, 2012
NCAA TOURNAMENT - FIRST ROUND
Long Beach State (12-7-0) at
No. 17 Santa Clara (11-3-6)
Date: Saturday, Nov. 10
Time: 1 p.m. (PST)
Location: Buck Shaw Stadium
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Long Beach State earned an at-large bid to the 2012 NCAA Division I Women's Soccer Championship and will make its way to No. 17 Santa Clara for a first-round match-up on Saturday, Nov. 10. Kick-off is set for 1 p.m. at Buck Shaw Stadium.
BACK TO THE BIG SHOW
A year after its historic run to the NCAA Elite Eight, Long Beach State is back in the NCAA Tournament, earning one of 34 at-large berths. This is the 49ers' third-straight NCAA Tournament appearance and fourth in the last five years. LBSU is 3-3 in the postseason with all three wins coming in 2011.
SO WE MEET AGAIN
The 49ers find themselves in familiar territory as this marks the second time in three years that they will face Santa Clara in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. In 2010, LBSU dropped a 1-0 decision to the Broncos at Stanford's Cagan Stadium. Despite holding a commanding 22-to-5 advantage in shots and a 7-to-2 edge in corner kicks, Long Beach State couldn't seem to catch a break as the Broncos scored the lone goal in the 84th minute.
SCOUTING THE BRONCOS
No. 17 Santa Clara (11-3-6) closed out the regular season on a five-game unbeaten streak, going 3-0-2 during that span. The team's three losses have all come to ranked opponents - Stanford, Notre Dame and Pepperdine - on the road. The Broncos, who are making their 23rd NCAA Tournament appearance, earned an at-large bid after finishing third in the West Coast Conference. Julie Johnston has paced Santa Clara with 20 points (8 goals, 4 assists), and she has received a good amount of support from Sofia Huerta, who also has six goals and five assists. Andi Tostanoski has seen most of the action in between the pipes, compiling 68 saves and a 1.10 goals against average.
THE SERIES VS. SANTA CLARA
Long Beach State trails in its all-time series with Santa Clara, 4-1-0. The two teams have met just once since the 49ers reinstated the program in 1998, as the Broncos topped LBSU, 1-0, in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament.
SEVEN 49ERS EARN ALL-BIG WEST HONORS
Seven 49ers were named to the All-Big West Women's Soccer Team the conference office announced on Oct. 31. Nadia Link highlighted the group with her second consecutive Big West Offensive Player of the Year award. She also earned first-team all-conference honors for the third year in a row. Link was joined by Alex Balcer on the first team, while Eileen Maes and Kelsey Wilson garnered second-team honors. Taylor Nelson received honorable mention recognition, and Elizabeth Lyons and Hannah Sanders were also chosen to the all-freshman team.
Long Beach State has not allowed a goal in regulation over its last five matches. The 49ers posted three shutout victories - at UC Davis, at Pacific and vs. Hawaii - and also dropped a pair of double overtime games to UC Irvine and Cal State Northridge. The Anteaters converted a penalty kick in the 109th minute, while the Matadors scored the golden goal in the 104th minute.
Junior Eileen Maes and senior Nadia Link have combined to score 17 of LBSU's 35 goals, including seven of the 49ers' 12 game-winners. Maes has a team-high nine goals, which ties her for eighth in the program's single-season history, while Link has eight (T10th). LBSU is 9-2 when Link and/or Maes have found the back of the net.
In addition to Maes and Link, five other 49ers have registered multiple goals in 2012. Redshirt freshman Renee Mendiola and junior Jessika Oseguera both have three, while freshman Elizabeth Lyons, senior Alex Balcer and sophomore Kristyn Benavidez each have two.
49ERS HIT 10 AGAIN
Long Beach State surpassed the 10-win plateau for the seventh time in the last eight years after defeating UC Davis (Oct. 12) and Pacific (Oct. 14). It also marks the third-straight year that the 49ers have reached double figures in the win column. Last season, LBSU totaled a program-best 18 victories, topping the previous record of 14, which was established in 2006, 2008 and 2010.
LINK EYES CAREER RECORDS
Nadia Link is tied for second among the 49er all-time leaders with 32 career goals. She needs one more to to tie and two to break the 26-year old school record of 33, which is held by Janet Fettig (1984-86). Link also ranks among LBSU's top-five in game-winning goals (2nd, 13), shots (3rd, 208), points (T3rd, 84) and assists (5th, 20).
Junior Eileen Maes has continued to produce on the offensive end as she leads the team with nine goals. Maes, who has twice been named the Big West Offensive Player of the Week, hit her first hot streak of the season at Cal State Fullerton's Under Armour Invitational where she connected for three goals in two games, earning her all-tournament honors. Maes went off again three weeks later, finding the back of the net in four-straight contests. She registered the game-winner against both UC Davis and Pacific, and also scored vs. UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly. On the year, the Oakland, Calif., native has nine goals, three assists, 21 points and 45 shots.
MAY I HELP YOU?
Senior defender/midfielder Kelsey Wilson (San Clemente, Calif.) has compiled a career-high six assists this season. Wilson, who is often on the front end of the 49ers' set plays, has had at least one assist in five games. She also had a career-best two helpers at UC Riverside (Sept. 28). Wilson is one assist away from breaking into the school's all-time top-10 after just one-plus seasons at Long Beach State.
MEYERS GETS COMFORTABLE
Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Marrina Meyers, who walked on and did not see any playing time last year, has stepped into a starting role in 2012. She has settled right in as she has twice been named the Big West Defensive Player of the Week, earning the honor on Sept. 21, following a six-save performance in a 1-0 win vs. San Diego, and then again on Oct. 15, after posting shutouts at UC Davis and Pacific. She was also tabbed the College Sports Madness Big West Player of the Week for the latter effort. On the season, the Vista, Calif., native has compiled 74 saves and a 1.11 goals against average, good for fifth in the Big West.
If Long Beach State wins on Saturday, it will face the victor of top-seeded Stanford and Idaho State in second-round action on Friday, Nov. 16.
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