Teams: UC Davis vs. Pacific
Records: Aggies, 0-0; Tigers 0-0
Where: Aggie Stadium
When: Friday at 6 p.m.
Who to watch: Junior Nadia Namdari was the standout performer for the Aggies in 2010.
The Escondido, Calif. native led UC Davis in both goals and assists last season – with eight and five, respectively.
She will look to continue her impressive run into her junior year.
Did you know? The Aggies may have an extra advantage when they face the Tigers.
UC Davis head coach Vianney Campos was a four-year starter at Pacific and coached the Tigers before joining the Aggies.
“The advantage that I have is that I know a lot of their strategies like the back of my hand,” Campos said. “I understand the structure they are able to play with, so I think that’s a huge edge for us. At the same time though, they know me really well so they might have the same kind of advantage on me.”
Preview: The Aggies can enter their first game of the 2011 season against Pacific feeling confident and prepared.
UC Davis defeated the Tigers twice last year to tally the first two NorPac Conference-victories in school history. Still, Campos believes even more important was the Aggies preseason performance against Pacific.
“We’re very confident in ourselves,” she said. “In the past we’ve tended to drop down and play their style of game, which is a more physical game. The scrimmage was really exciting because we played our style and score a lot of goals against them.”
Not only do the Aggies open the year with key a conference match, but Friday’s contest will also mark UC Davis’ final home game until it faces Stanford on Sept. 25. Between home contests, the Aggies will make two long road-trips – a four game swing in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, and a three game stint in Ohio.
With the difficult schedule that lies ahead, the Aggies know how important it is for them to start strong on Friday.
“Creating confidence and momentum early on is huge,” Campos said. “Starting off with a win would help give the team confidence going forward.”
– Trevor Cramer