#25 Men’s Soccer Challenges Santa Clara and San Francisco This Weekend

#25 Men’s Soccer Challenges Santa Clara and San Francisco This Weekend

The Brown men’s soccer team headed west after defeating the University of Rhode Island 5-0 in Kingston last Saturday evening to match up against Santa Clara and San Francisco. The men improved to 4-0-1 on the season with its latest win, as goalkeeper Paul Grandstrand (Orono, MN) has been holding down a defense that hasn’t allowed a goal in four games as he sits at 4-0-1 in net.

The Bears will be tested this weekend when they challenge Santa Clara tonight at 7:30 p.m. (PT) at Buck Shaw Stadium and will then take on San Francisco at 2:00 p.m. (PT) on Sunday, Sept. 27.

Ranked No. 25 nationally in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of American (NSCAA) Top 25, the Bears have not allowed a goal since laying Lehigh to a 1-1 draw in their season-opening game at Stevenson Field on Sept. 6. Leading the offense is sophomore Austin Mandel (Tarzana, CA), who has notched four goals, which included two against URI. Junior Jon Okafor (Verona, NJ) has recorded two goals and one assist, while four other Bears have scored one goal.

Santa Clara (2-4-0) has battled through a tough early-season schedule, taking losses to No. 5 California, No. 23 UC Irvine and regionally-ranked Stanford. Erik Hurtado leads the Broncos offense with two goals and one assist, while both Eric Masch and Mykell Bates have posted two goals apiece. Larry Jackson owns a 2-4-0 record in net, playing 554:18 minutes. He’s allowed 10 goals, earned two shutouts and has 14 saves.

Friday night’s match against the Broncos can be watched live via ALL-ACCESS on Santa Clara University’s official athletics website (www.santaclarabroncos.com). Additionally, live scoring for the game will be available on (www.santaclarabroncos.com).

San Francisco hosts San Jose on Friday night and will challenge the Bears on Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. (PT). The Dons head into this weekend 2-3-0 on the season and are coming off three consecutive losses to Sacramento State (2-1), #7 Cal (3-0) and a 1-0 double overtime loss to Stanford.

The Dons offense, which is led by Jonathan Levi’s two goals and two assists, has failed to score in its last two matches. Also, Conor Chinn, a 2009 Hermann Trophy Watch List selection, is the reigning West Coast Conference Player of the Year and 2009 preseason All-American. This season he has tallied two goals and one assist, and is coming off a record-setting 2008 campaign scoring 17 goals, including six game-winners propelling the Dons to the 2008 WCC Championship.

After these two games, the Brown Bears head back east to host Boston University at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 30, before opening up Ivy League play against Columbia on Saturday, Oct. 3 at 7:00 p.m.

Also, check out head coach Mike Noonan's latest video interview about the team and its upcoming games at www.brownbears.com/video/mens soccer/MikeNoonan2.flv.