Teams: UC Davis at Cal State Fullerton; vs. Cal Poly
Records: Aggies, 5-10-0 (3-4-0); Titans, 5-8-2 (3-4-0); Mustangs, 5-5-3 (2-2-2)
Where: Titan Stadium – Fullerton, Calif.; Aggie Soccer Field
When: Wednesday at 7 p.m.; Saturday 1 p.m.
Who to watch: Senior midfielder Jason Santos will be looking to score his first goal of the season this week.
The Cardiff, Calif. native has started all 15 games this season and has taken 10 shots.
Did you know? Three of the Aggies’ eight goal scorers this season have been freshmen.
Freshmen Nick Grigoriev, Alex Aguilar and Kevin Schulte have all found the back of the net for UC Davis.
Preview: With just three games left in the season, UC Davis knows each contest is critical in the Big West Conference playoff chase.
“I feel great about where we are in the standings,” said coach Dwayne Shaffer. “Our fate is in our own hands. We’re treating these three games as though they’re playoff games.”
The Aggies will open this week with a road match against the Titans in what could prove to be their most important game of the season.
UC Davis is currently tied with Cal State Fullerton for third place in the Big West, but the Aggies know this game is for more than just sole possession of third place.
“It’s a big game,” Shaffer said. “Not just because of what it means in the standings, but the winner of the game will also have the tiebreaker, which could prove to be critical.”
From there the Aggies will move on to the play Cal Poly in their final regular season home game of the year.
The Mustangs currently sit outside of the playoff picture, but are just a single point behind UC Davis with a game in hand.
In order to be successful in these key matches, it is important for UC Davis to find some offense.
“We need to have leadership from our upperclassmen,” Shaffer said, “and our defense needs to get back to holding opponents scoreless. The number one thing we need, however, is for our attacking players to score a goal. We need one of them to do something special.”
– Trevor Cramer