2016 CSUN Men and Women’s Soccer Preview

    CSUN soccer player takes the ball from Fullerton player
    CSUN midfielder dribbles the ball against Cal State Fullerton. (File photo/The Sundial)

    The Cal State Northridge men’s soccer program will kick off the 2016-17 season in August. The team is led by head coach Terry Davila and assistant coaches Zach Feldman and Juan Florez.

    Davila told gomatadors.com he is excited to have three conference champions on the non-conference schedule for this upcoming season. Davila also said since they are playing teams they haven’t played before, like Ball State team who is in the top 75 RPU, there is a feeling of uncertainty, but Davila said it provides a level of excitement.

    The team also has 19 players returning from last year. They finished the 2015 season 8-8-3 and 4-4-2 in the Big West Conference, led by CSUN’s Big West Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Shane Steffes.

    Steffes, a native of Lancaster, Calif., had a solid junior campaign. He assisted the game-winning goal against Loyola Chicago in their season opener and finished the season with two goals.

    Patrick Hickman, a two-time All-Big West honoree, Dean Wright, the team’s top returning scorer in 2015, and Papi Diouf, who scored two goals last season, return with valuable experience as well.

    The program also welcomes eight freshmen this season, including three from outside the United States.

    On the women’s side, CSUN had an impressive 2015 season, which included an 11-8-1 tally. They also just missed the program’s record for most wins in a season.

    Head coach Keith West returns with 14 upperclassmen, including last season’s top two scorers, Cynthia Sanchez and Kourtney Kutscher.

    Sanchez, a 2015 All-Big West Conference first team selection, was valuable for CSUN last fall, leading the team in goals (11), points (25), shots (48), and game-winning goals (6).

    Kutscher, also earned All-Big West Conference First team accolades, helping the program to six goals, two assists, 14 points, 26 shots and 12 shots on goal.

    West said in an article on gomatadors.com that after looking at the team’s from Fullerton, UC Santa Barbara and Long Beach state, the matadors might have the strongest inn terms of quality and depth.

    Six freshmen will join the women’s roster at CSUN this fall, including five from California.

    The men’s team will face University of California, Berkeley, at CSUN on Aug. 14, while the women will take on Portland State University in Portland, Ore., on Aug. 19.

    Men’s Soccer first games of the season Schedule:

    8/14 California @ CSUN

    8/21 San Diego State @ CSUN

    8/26 Tulsa @ CSUN

    9/2 New Mexico @ New Mexico

    2016 Women’s Schedule:

    8/19 Portland State @ Portland State

    8/21 Oregon State @ Oregon State

    8/26 North Dakota State @ CSUN

    8/28 South Dakota @ CSUN

    9/2 Ball State @ CSUN