Burnaby, BC - After sweeping all three games on their trip to Hawaii, the SFU Clan men’s soccer team has jumped another spot in the NCAA Division II national men’s soccer rankings to second. Fort Lewis College in Colorado is ranked first. The rankings are chosen by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.
SFU has been steadily climbing the rankings since they debuted in them on September 20, the third poll of the season. They were placed in a tie for 12th position in their first week of being ranked after receiving votes, but not cracking the top 25 the previous week. In the fourth poll of the season the Clan shot up to a tie for fifth spot before moving up two more spots last week to number three.
This week’s move up to number two comes on the heels of the team’s trip to Hawaii, where they won all three of their games to remain undefeated for the season. After defeating Brigham Young University Hawaii last Wednesday by a score of 4-1, SFU went up against a tough opponent in Hawaii Pacific University on Saturday. Hawaii Pacific has been ranked as high as third in the West Region poll. Defeating the tough HPU squad by a score of 5-1 no doubt contributed to the jump in placing this week, and a win over the University of Hawaii-Hilo on Thanksgiving Monday by a score of 4-0 certainly didn’t hurt.
In addition to the team accolades, freshman Chris Bargholz has also received an individual award for his performance on last week’s trip.
Bargholz has been named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Co-Player of the Week for men’s soccer. Isaac Kerr, of MSU Billings, also received the honour.
Bargholz scored three goals in the first two games of SFU’s Hawaiian road trip last week, including a pair of game-winners. SFU outscored PacWest foes BYU-Hawaii and HPU, who have a combined record of 15-5-1, by a 9-2 margin. The freshman has eight goals on the season.
“Chris turned in a fantastic performance last Thursday against BYU-Hawaii and an even better performance Saturday, scoring twice against Hawaii Pacific. His first goal of Saturday’s game was a sublime chip over their goalkeeper. He is improving almost daily and becoming more and more comfortable with college soccer in every match,” said Head Coach Alan Koch.
Bargholz is the third SFU athlete to be recognized with GNAC Player of the Week honour’s this season. Carlo Basso, also on the men’s soccer team, won the award last week and women’s cross country runner Jessica Smith received it on September 19th.
The SFU Clan men’s soccer team is back in action at Terry Fox Field next Thursday, October 20 at 7:30 PM against Northwest Nazarene University.