It’ll soon be Pac-12 season for UCLA.
Before embarking on a stretch of six conference opponents in seven matches, the No. 6 men’s soccer team (4-1-1) will travel to San Luis Obispo on Friday evening to take on the Cal Poly Mustangs (1-4-1).
After starting the season with a four-game losing streak, the Mustangs have gone 1-0-1 with a win over Fresno Pacific and a tie against No. 11 San Diego State.
Two current Bruins had terrific games against the Mustangs last season. Junior forward Seyi Adekoya had two goals while sophomore midfielder Jackson Yueill scored a goal and dished out two assists.
Yueill has been one of the prime contributors for the Bruins this season. The sophomore ranks in the top five in the nation in assists and assists per game with five and .83, respectively. He also tied UCLA’s record for assists in a game, making four in the Bruins’ 6-1 win over Akron.
On top of his team-oriented play, Yueill has had one goal. But that one goal was a big one, as it was a last-second game-winner to cap off a comeback win against UCSB.
Another big contributor is goalkeeper Juan Cervantes. The redshirt senior ranks 19th nationally and second in the Pac-12 in save percentage at a .852 clip. He also leads the Pac-12 in saves per game and total saves with 3.83 and 23.
Cervantes has been a relief after the Bruins struggled to find a starting goalkeeper last season until they opted for Cervantes relatively late in the year.
Cal Poly has had a pretty unsuccessful history against UCLA, as the Bruins have gone 12-2-4 all-time against the Mustangs. Other than its playing history these two teams have a couple of people in common. The Mustangs have two coaches on their current staff that used to be Bruin coaches.
Cal Poly head coach Steve Sampson was an assistant at UCLA in the early to mid-1980s and goalkeeping coach Ignacio Hernandez coached at UCLA from 2010-2011.
After Friday night’s game, the Bruins will begin Pac-12 play with games against the University of Washington and Oregon State next week.