Nov. 1, 2011
Davis, Calif. -
AT A GLANCE: Mathematically eliminated from the post-season tournament field by a 1-5-3 run over the last nine matches, Cal State Fullerton can play the spoiler role in the final week of the Big West Conference season and nail down its first winning season since 2000 in the process. The Titans play at UC Davis on Wednesday afternoon and host Cal State Northridge on Saturday night. Davis is in the hunt for the regular season championship and Northridge, hosting UCSB on Tuesday, is battling for one of the four post-season tournament berths.
CAL STATE FULLERTON (7-6-4, 1-5-2): At 7-6-4 the Titans are trying to nail down their first winning season since 2000 (15-6-1). They need one more win or two ties. The Titans have won two tournament championships -- the Labor Day Classic at CSU Northridge (1-0-1) via goal differential and the Nike Invitational in Las Vegas (2-0).
UC DAVIS (7-7-2, 5-3-0): The Aggies are the biggest surprise of a surprising Big West season. Picked for sixth place in the pre-season poll, they are in second place with 15 points, just one behind leader UC Irvine and the Aggies have two games to play (home to Fullerton and at UC Riverside) compared to only one for the Anteaters (at Cal Poly).
PRE-SEASON PICKS: The Titans were forecast for third place in the annual Big West coaches' pre-season poll. Defending tourney champion UC Santa Barbara was the favorite followed by Cal Poly, Fullerton, 2010 regular season champion UC Irvine, Cal State Northridge, UC Davis and UC Riverside.
SERIES HISTORY: The Titans have won the last three meetings to take a 6-4-2 edge in the all-time series, all contested at the Div. I level. Fullerton is 3-2-1 at home and 3-2-1 in Davis.
GOAL SCORERS: Twelve different Titans have scored goals led by Kevin Venegas with 6 and Oscar Aguero with 4 followed by Ian Ramos, Nick Posthuma, Ritchie Gonzalez and Jesse Escalante with 2 each. Venegas leads the way with 4 assists while Posthuma and Jameson Campbell each have three.
GOAL STOPPER: With his sixth shutout of this season vs. Cal Poly on Oct. 19, Trevor Whiddon has doubled his Titan career total to 12. The school records are 9 for a season (Mike Ammann in 1993) and 19 for a career (1991-93).
QUICK STRIKE: If Oscar Aguero's fans arrived late, they missed his first two goals. He got his first 54 seconds into the UNLV match at Northridge and he bested that vs. Denver with a goal 23 seconds into the contest.
SCORING DROUGHT: The Titans had managed only four goals in eight matches before erupting for three in the second half in a losing cause Saturday night vs. UC Santa Barbara. The only bigger half of the year was a 4-goal effort in the first half vs. UNLV on Sept. 3. Fullerton also had 3 goals in the first half at American on Sept. 16.
ROSTER DEPTH: The Titans have managed to utilize 23 players so far this season. Only two -- Reiss and Whiddon -- have started all 17 matches. A total of 19 players have made at least one start.
NO FIELD ADVANTAGE: Fullerton is a combined 8-9-4 away from Titan Stadium in 2010 and 2011 and 6-9-2 at home during the same time period.
LOOKING AHEAD: Sacramento State will join the Big West Conference as an associate member for men's soccer beginning with the 2012 schedule. Currently, there is a 7-team alignment with each team playing 10 games -- home-and-home with four foes and single games with the remaining two.