Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – For the first time since 2013 the Whittier College Men's Soccer Team has earned a berth into the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Post Season Tournament.
Tonight, Wednesday, November 6, the Purple & Gold will travel to take on No. 3 seed University of Redlands beginning at 7:00pm.
Admission is free for any students or employees with a current SCIAC ID. General admission costs $10, while senior citizens, 55 and over, and military personnel with ID are $5. Children under 12 receive free admission.
Whittier enters the postseason dropping their final two games of the regular season against Claremont-M-S (2-1 OT) and Occidental (1-0). But what a season they have had posting an 8-5-2, 7-3-2 SCIAC record. In the month of October they were red hot going 4-1-2, which included a three-game winning streak against La Verne, Cal Lutheran, and Chapman.
The Poets and Bulldogs matched up against each other only once on the season with Whittier prevailing 1-0 on the road. But after that UR never dropped a contest going 9-0-2 the remainder of the season.
Sophomore forward Banks Telkamp (Seattle, WA) finished the regular season with a team-high nine points on four goals and an assist. Junior forward Alejandro Trujillo (Buena Park, CA) is also effective on the offensive end with four goals, including two game-winners against SCIAC competition. Sophomore goalkeeper Teddy Nickerson (Seattle, WA) has logged more than 1,140 minutes as the Poets' starter. He boasts a 0.86 goals-against average and a .788 saves percentage. He owns a 6-3-2 record with three shutouts in conference this season.
The Bulldogs enter their 12th SCIAC Postseason Tournament with four crowns to their name.
Sophomore forward Steve Acuña completed the regular season as the conference leader with 16 points on five goals and six assists in SCIAC action. Junior midfielder Collin ChubbFertal follows close behind in third with 12 points on five goals and two assists. Between the posts, first-year goalkeeper Adrian Muñoz paces the Bulldogs with 21 saves, a .778 save percentage, and a 5-0-2 record in conference play.
In the other semifinal, top-seeded CMS (12-3-2, 9-1-2 SCIAC) ended the regular season with a 3-0-1 mark over the final four games to lock in their No. 1 seed. Also nationally ranked 13th and 25th, the Stags are led by sophomore forward William Barton (Seattle, WA), who is second in the SCIAC with five goals in conference action this season. Sophomore goalkeeper Eduardo De Anda (Fontana, CA) anchors the defense with a SCIAC-best .917 saves percentage. He owns a 6-0-1 record with three shutouts in conference competition this season.
Ranked No. 4 in the tournament, Occidental (10-5-4, 7-4-1 SCIAC) went 6-0-2 over its final eight games to secure a spot in the semifinal. First-year midfielder Joey Schwartz (Highland Park, IL) and sophomore midfielder Adrian Paredes (West Hills, CA) lead the Tigers' attack with five and four goals, respectively. Junior goalkeeper Scott Drazan (Gaithersburg, MD) mans the net with a 0.95 goals-against average and a .762 saves percentage this season.
The winners of the semifinal matches will face each other in the final this weekend at the site of the highest remaining seed. The tournament winner will earn the SCIAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Championships.