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Athletics Roundup: Volleyball Goes 2-1; Soccer; Cross-Country; Football

USD volleyball's Megan Jacobsen sends a ball over the net.USD volleyball's Megan Jacobsen celebrates a point with teammates. The Toreros won two of three matches in Santa Barbara last weekend.

Championships are officially won by way of conference matches and success is measured by postseason play, but don’t ever think that the University of San Diego women’s volleyball team takes its nonconference schedule early in the season lightly.

The Toreros have been to Hawaii and have already faced the nation’s No. 1 team Nebraska, No. 10 Washington and No. 13 Hawaii and will have a head-to-head meeting with No. 20 USC and cross-town rival San Diego State this weekend in the Jenny Craig Pavilion. In other words, USD doesn't duck anyone. It uses the nonconference portion of its schedule to prepare for what's ahead.

So when the team traveled to Santa Barbara for a three-match weekend against UC Santa Barbara, Harvard and La Salle on Sept. 13-14, it certainly meant something. The end result was a 2-1 mark with USD falling to UCSB in a four-set match on Friday only to sweep its two Saturday matches. The results put the Toreros’ season record at 4-4.

Against the Gauchos of UCSB, USD won the first set, 25-23, but dropped the next three, 25-22, 25-19, 25-22. UCSB, which plays in the Big West Conference, improved its record to 6-1. For USD, middle blocker senior Megan Jacobsen had a season-high 16 kills, three blocks and a service ace and junior outside hitter Roxie Wiblin had 12 kills.

The Toreros returned to action Saturday morning and swept Harvard, 25-14, 25-16, 25-15 behind a team-high 16 kills from sophomore outside hitter Katie Lukes and 12 kills from Wiblin. In the late afternoon, USD won 25-13, 25-15, 25-23 against La Salle. Jacobsen and Lukes each had nine kills and Wiblin had eight. Jacobsen had five blocks.

The USD Invitational #2 gives the Toreros their last nonconference competition before West Coast Conference play. This time it is a complete Southern California affair with USC, San Diego State and Long Beach on consecutive nights at 7 p.m.

Women's Volleyball Schedule: USD hosts USD Invitational #2 (Thursday-Saturday): USD hosts No. 20 USC, Thursday, 7 p.m.; USD hosts San Diego State, Friday, 7 p.m.; USD hosts Long Beach State, Saturday, 7 p.m., all matches at Jenny Craig Pavilion.

Men's Soccer

A 1-0 victory over UC Davis on Sept. 13 gave the USD men’s soccer team a 5-0 record to start the season, the best by a Torero men’s soccer team in 17 years (2002).

Miguel Berry scored the game’s lone goal in the 74th minute — already his fifth goal of the season — off a free kick. Fellow Torero, goalkeeper Matt Wiher, earned his fourth shutout of the young season against Davis.

Two days later, however, USD lost both its undefeated record and Wiher’s shutout streak in a 2-1 defeat against Sacramento State.

The scoreless streak ended four minutes into the game when Sacramento State’s Matt Carnefix made a turnaround shot off an assist by Oscar Govea. USD tied it in the 30th minute as Berry made another free kick goal. Sacramento State’s Titus Washington scored the game-winning goal in the 77th minute off a header assist by Tyler Moss.

The men’s schedule slows down some the next two weeks with consecutive Friday night road games, this week at UC Irvine and the following Friday at UC Riverside.

Men's Soccer Schedule: USD at UC Irvine, Friday, 7 p.m.

Women's Soccer

What’s the difference in one goal? For the USD women’s soccer team, playing in a pair of 1-0 road contests earned it a split of a nonconference games.

On Sept. 13, USD redshirt senior transfer Milan Moses faced her former team, San Diego State, and got the game’s lone goal in the 78th minute. Moses’ fourth goal of the season, assisted by Halle Walls and Mina Ghazizadeh, came on a shot from the top of the box on the inside right post area.

Two days later in Northridge, Calif., it was USD’s turn to experience the other side of a 1-0 result. Cal State Northridge’s Amanda Martin’s penalty kick goal in the 66th minute was the difference. CSUN outshot USD 8-7, but USD had a 4-1 edge on quality shots on goal.

The results of the weekend gave USD at 4-3 season record. The team is in the midst of its longest road trip of the season — five games — with a trip to Utah this weekend for two and opening West Coast Conference play Oct. 5 at Gonzaga.

Women's Soccer Schedule: USD at Utah Valley, Friday, 10 a.m., Orem, Utah; USD at Utah, Sunday, noon.

Men and Women's Cross Country

Hannah Rasmussen continued her stronghold as the top USD women's cross-country runner with a second-place overall finish and top men's runners, Ethan Steiner and Jackson Pearce, each finished in the top 10 to lead their respective USD teams to a third-place finish in the USD Invitational at Mission Bay on the evening of Sept. 13.

Competing in the lone home meet for the Toreros, Will Guarino opted to move the meet to Friday evening racing instead of the Saturday morning race it has been the last few years.

Rasmussen chased down the field in the final meters to secure the runner-up finish in the 6K race behind the winner — Cal State Fullerton's Trinity Ruelas (21:48.1) — with a time of 22 minutes, 02.71 seconds. She was joined among the top 20 runners by Torero teammates Molly Klein (11th, 22:50.12) and Cassidy Kuhn (15th, 23:03.86).

In the men's race, Steiner and Pearce finished the men's 8K in eighth and 10th overall place. Steiner finished in 26:24.97, followed closely by Pearce in 26:34.23. Ian Converse, Patrick Bruce and Ryan Tessier finished 12th, 14th and 16th, respectively, in the top 20. Cal State Fullerton's Jacob Smith won the individual title in 25:45.6.

In the team standings, Arizona State won both the men and women's titles, followed by Cal State Fullerton's men and women's teams. USD teams were third and Cal State Northridge teams were both fourth.

Cross-Country Schedule (M&W): USD teams compete at the Roy Griak Invitational, Saturday, Sept. 28, 9:30 a.m., St. Paul, Minn.

Football

The USD football team, following losses against two strong FCS scholarship teams in Cal Poly and UC Davis on Aug. 31 and Sept. 7, respectively, had a bye week this past Saturday.

Having a week off from game action means that the team was able to catch its collective breath, heal any early-season aches and pains and focus solely on getting ready for its next game. Indeed, the Toreros are back at it this Saturday at 1 p.m. as they'll face another quality FCS team in Harvard, which like the Toreros, is a non-athletic scholarship football program.

The game will be played at Torero Stadium and it is the fourth meeting between the two teams since 2012. USD has played at Harvard twice, including last season, and in 2013 at Torero Stadium. Just like the previous time USD and Harvard played at USD, Saturday's game will be Harvard's season-opening game. Harvard won the 2013 game, 42-20.

Football Schedule: USD hosts Harvard University, Saturday, 1 p.m., Torero Stadium; USD has a bye Sept. 28. 

USD Athletics

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Contact:

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