SPORTSCOPE : UCLA Soccer Team Prepares to Defend Its National Title
The UCLA men’s soccer team, defending NCAA champion and ranked No. 1 in the nation, will open the season against Westmont at 8 p.m. Tuesday at El Camino College.
Bruin Coach Sigi Schmid, who is beginning his 12th year, has eight returning lettermen, including four who played on the U.S. gold medal team at the recent Pan American Games: Mike Lapper, Cobi Jones, goalkeeper Brad Friedel and Joe-Max Moore.
Four players who competed in the U.S. Olympic Festival this summer are back: Sean Henderson, Jorge Salcedo, Zak Ibsen and Tayt Ianni.
Sam George, who led a U.S. team to a 6-1 record in the 1991 World University Games, returns as captain for a second season.
Schmid’s career record of 182-35-29 is second best at the school. Ed Stewart coached UCLA teams to a 194-29-12 record from 1949-1966. Last year the Bruins finished at 19-1-4.
The Pepperdine women’s volleyball team, ranked No. 15 by the American Volleyball Coaches Assn., will begin the season Friday against Hofstra in the Sheraton-Sun Devil Challenge at Arizona State in Tempe. The five-team tournament ends Saturday.
Other teams in the field are Arizona State, Utah State and San Diego State.
Wave Coach Nina Matthies, the 1990 West Coast Conference co-coach of the year, begins her ninth season at the school with a 149-115 record and all six returning starters from 1990. Pepperdine, four-time defending conference champion, was 25-6 last year.
All-conference first-team selections returning include seniors Carolyn Hueth, Lesli Asplund and Cari Delson. Also back are juniors Blair Noonan, a second-team All-WCC player last year, and Debbie Merandi, who received honorable mention, and Jennifer Meredith, who was named to the conference all-freshmen team.
Other key returnees include junior Julie Whalen and sophomores Rainy Chrisman, Mary Eberhart, Erika Lawson and Barbara Stross.
Senior Geoffrey Clark, a two-time All-American and twice named the Big West Conference water polo player of the year, will lead Pepperdine as it begins its season by playing host to the Wasko Tournament from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sept. 7 at Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool on campus.
Other teams in the competition are UCLA, UC Santa Barbara and the Harvard Club.
In Coach Terry Schroeder’s five seasons at Pepperdine, his record is 98-61. His teams won a Big West Conference championship in 1986 and tied for the league title in 1989 and last year. The Waves were 23-9 last year.
Other returning players besides Clark, include senior Steve Long and junior Henry Rabello, both second-team, all-conference selections last year.
Ellen Blackmun, a freshman basketball guard at Iowa State last season, is transferring to Pepperdine, Wave Coach Ron Fortner announced. Blackmun, an all-state, third-team selection in high school in Munster, Ind., will redshirt in the 1991-92 season.