2002 season

Chico State soccer signs two for fall season
(July 1) Chico State men's soccer coach Mike O'Malley announced the signing of two players for the upcoming season. Michael Esser, a 26-year-old forward from Madrid, Spain and Brian Phillips, a freshman midfielder from Visalia, have both signed National Letters of Intent to play for the Wildcats.

Until the age of 14, Esser played junior soccer for the world-renown Real Madrid Soccer Club. After graduating high school Esser helped his father in the family business, but with his father now retiring Esser has decided to pursue his collegiate education in California. Restricted to Division II schools because of his age, Esser chose Chico State after visiting eight different campuses.

We were aggressive in our recruitment of Michael. He was a great student in high school, speaks four different languages, and is highly motivated as an athlete and a student, said O'Malley. Because of his maturity, mixed with his excellent athletic ability, we feel he will add a welcome diversity to our program. There is no question that Michael is a big fish in the D-II recruiting world. We will see how he adapts to the local collegiate waters.

Phillips is the brother of returning senior starter Brian Phillips. He was a starting midfielder for the California State Team four years in a row and went on to make the Western United States Regional Team for the U.S. Olympic & National Team Development Program. Phillips was a four-year varsity starter in high school, three year All-Conference player, and the conference's Offensive MVP his senior year.

Although Jason is not the biggest of players at 5-feet-8 and 140 pounds, he is technically gifted, has great vision, and game savvy beyond his years, said O'Malley. He should see game time in his freshman year based on his incoming level of fitness.

Wondolowski earns First Team All-CCAA honor
(Nov. 6) Sophomores Chris Wondolowski and Amy Swanson of the Chico State men's and women's soccer teams, respectively, were part of the First Team All-CCAA soccer selections as announced by the CCAA Saturday.

Joining Wondolowski in representing the men's team is Dustin Tong, an Honorable Mention selection. Also representing Chico State on the women's team is junior defender Katie Ferchland, a Second Team selection, and Honorable Mention selections Angela Orr, Jenny Craighead, Heather Moonjian, and Heather Tukua.

Wondolowski led the Wildcats in goals and assists for the second consecutive year. He finished with 12 goals and seven assists. Tong finished with three goals and provided a steady presence at midfield.

Wildcats end season on high note
(November 4) Chris Wondolowski, Brian Phillips, and Rusty Phillips all scored within the first 10 minutes of the match as the Chico State men's soccer team finished a frustrating season on a high note with a 3-1 victory over visiting Humboldt State Monday night at University Soccer Stadium.

Thanks in part to Rusty Phillips' two assist, one goal performance, the Wildcats finished their season with a 6-13-0 mark. Humboldt State dropped to 3-13-1 and still has a pair of matches to play.

Wondolowski, as he has all season, provided the Wildcats with an early highlight when he scored just 2:03 into the match. Wondolowski got things started at midfield and dribbled past a pair of defenders before working a perfect give-and-go with Rusty Phillips. Wondolowski one-timed Phillips' pass by Humboldt State goalkeeper Jeff Wallace for his 12th goal of the season.

However, this match belonged to Rusty Phillips, who finished with a goal and two assists. Brian Phillips was the recipient of his next brilliant pass and he took the cross, settled it once, and finished it on one hop to give the Wildcats a 2-0 lead in the sixth minute.

Rusty Phillips finally got selfish in the ninth minute and scored on a penalty kick to make it 3-0 at the 9:54 mark.
Humboldt State got its only goal in the 11th minute with Brad O'Leary took Geoff Scott's pass and buried it low past Chico State goalkeeper Dustin Eastment, who is the team's only graduating senior.

The Wildcats could have done more damage, but Wallace was nearly flawless after the first 10 minutes, gathering in 11 saves. Eastment finished with five saves.

UC Davis men smash Chico State 4-0
(Nov. 2) Jesse Swonetz's goal early in the first half put UC Davis on top. His goal early in the second half put Chico State away as the UC Davis Aggies defeated Chico State 4-0 in the Aggies' season finale. Swonetz scored unassisted 11:23 into the match after an unsuccessful clear by the Chico State and added his second goal in the 57th minute thanks to Vinney Matteoli's assist. The Aggies were never threatened after that.

Ryan Shaw and Jeremy Warner added unassisted goals in the 68th and 78th minutes, respectively, for UC Davis. The Aggies finished the season 13-5-1 overall and 9-5-0 in the CCAA.
Chico State, which hosts Humboldt State Monday night at 7:30 to close out its season, fell to 5-13-0 and 5-9-0 in the CCAA.

Nic Platter and Jake Martini combined on the shutout for UC Davis.

Wildcats post OT win over Gators
(Oct. 26) The Chico State men’s soccer team defeated the San Francisco Gators, 1-0, in overtime at Cox Stadium in San Francisco.

Chico State scored with less than four minutes in the first overtime to secure the victory on Chris Wondolowski’s goal off a Ryan Grange pass. The goal was Wondolowski’s team-leading 11th goal of the season. The assist was Grange’s first this year.

Goal-keeper, Dustin Eastman returned to the starting line-up and posted Chico’s first shut-out of the season. Each team had one shot in overtime before Wondolowski sudden-victory goal. The Gators outshot the Wildcats 13-8 in the contest.

The victory breaks a four-game losing streak for the Wildcats to put them at 5-11 overall on the season, 5-7 in CCAA play.

The men’s soccer team will take on Sonoma State on Wednesday, Oct. 30, at 3:00 in Rohnert Park.

Cal State L.A. beats Chico State 3-1
(Oct. 20) Chris Wondolowski scored on a penalty kick with 18 seconds remaining to spoil Cal State L.A.'s shutout bid in a 3-1 loss Sunday afternoon at University Soccer Stadium.

Cal State L.A. got on the board twice in the first half to build a commanding lead and then put the game away in the 72nd minute when Jamie Beltran scored on a penalty kick. The visiting Golden Eagles improved to 4-11-0 overall and 2-9-0 in the CCAA, while Chico State dipped to 4-11-0 and 4-7-0.

Cal State L.A. opened the scoring in the fourth minute when Edgar Sevilla slammed a shot off Chico State defender Jake Stauffer's arm and into the net. Chico State goalie Scott Doty seemed to have a good chance at making the save before the deflection.

The Golden Eagles added another goal in the 31st minute when Rafi Pogosyan rebounded his own deflection off the crossbar and headed it into an empty net.

No. 7 Dominguez Hills remains undefeated in conference play
(Oct. 18) A second-half scoring barrage led to a 6-0 victory for the Cal State Dominguez Hills men's soccer team over Chico State in Friday night’s California Collegiate Athletic Association match-up. The Toros are now 10-0 in the CCAA and 13-2-1 overall. They came into the game ranked No. 7 in the nation and No. 1 in the West Region.

The Wildcats played good defense and goalkeeper Scott Doty chipped in with four first-half saves as Dominguez Hills edged Chico 1-0 at halftime. Doty finished with seven saves in the game.

Chico played solid for another 15 minutes to start the second half before the Toros ran away with the game, scoring five goals on 12 shots. Using their outstanding team speed, the Toros literally ran away from Chico defenders, scoring three breakaway goals. Six different players scored goals for Dominguez Hills, three of which were unassisted, as it proved its impressive ranking to a large crowd at University Soccer Stadium.

Chico was shutout for the fifth time this season as its record drops to 4-6-0 in the CCAA and 4-10-0 overall. Chris Wondolowski, the Wildcats leading scorer with nine goals, had his four-game scoring streak snapped in the contest. Chico could only muster six shots compared to the Toros 20 as they faced constant pressure from the Toro offense all night. The Wildcats let their frustration show, as four players drew yellow cards in the game.

Chico stays home and plays Cal State L.A. on Sunday, Oct. 20 at 1:30 p.m. Dominguez Hills travels to Davis Sunday for a 3:00 p.m. start time.

Men’s soccer swept on trip south
(Oct. 11 & 13) Sophomore forward Chris Wondolowski extended his scoring streak to four games by scoring on Robby Busick’s crossing pass against Cal Poly Pomona and unassisted against CSU, San Bernardino. Unfortunately, Wondolowski’s eighth and ninth goals of the season were the only two Chico State scored over the weekend as the Wildcats got swept.

Against Pomona on Friday, the Wildcats fell 2-1. It was the third straight win for the host Broncos and snapped a three-game conference winning streak for the Wildcats (4-8-0, 4-4-0 CCAA).

Trailing 1-0, the Wildcats knotted the match 1-1 in the 34th minute when Wondolowski received a perfect crossing pass from Robby Busick and blasted a shot past Cal Poly Pomona goalkeeper Tim Sisk. However, Pomona's Andrew Pierce scored the game winner in the 60th minute.

Wildcats goalkeeper Dustin Eastment had one of his better matches of the season, collecting nine saves. Pomona's Sisk had six saves.

Sunday at San Bernardino, Wondolowski opened the scoring in the 37th minute when he collected a loose ball and delivered it into an open net when Coyotes goalkeeper Jeff Canada got caught up in a scramble away from the goal.

However, San Bernardino answered with three goals in the second half to snap a five-match losing streak.

The Wildcats return home this weekend to host Cal State Dominguez Hills Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Cal State L.A. Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

Wildcats hold off Grand Canyon
(Oct. 6) The Chico State men's soccer team seemed to have the match well in hand after goals by Dustin Tong, Chris Wondolowski, and Brian Phillips gave them a 3-0 lead. However, Grand Canyon mounted a furious rally and the Wildcats barely survived, 3-2.

Tong gave Chico State (4-7-0, 4-3-0 CCAA) the early lead when his bullet from 30 yards out slipped through the outstretched hands of Grand Canyon goalie Nathan Edgin and made its way into the net in the 23rd minute. Wondolowski made it 2-0 just five minutes later when he collected Matthew Doty's header off a goal kick in stride and beat Edgin one-on-one for his second goal of the weekend and seventh of the season. Wondolowski collected his seventh assist of the season in the 47th minute when Brian Phillips headed in his crossing pass to make it 3-0.

Grand Canyon (4-8-0, 1-8-0 CCAA) didn't quit, however, and Brian Ronan's unassisted goal in the 74th minute gave the Antelopes life. Four minutes later, in the 78th minute, Sergio Iniguez made it 3-2 when he scored unassisted. His free kick deflected off the wall and into the net. However, time eventually ran out on Grand Canyon.

Second half goals key Wildcats
(Oct. 4) The Chico State men's soccer team scored two second-half goals to come from behind and beat UC San Diego, 2-1, for the first time since the Tritons join the CCAA in 2000.

The contest started out shaky for the Wildcats (3-7-0, 3-3-0 CCAA). In the 22nd minute of the game a Chico defender was looking to clear the ball back to its own keeper, but the bouncing ball went under the foot of Dustin Eastment and San Diego's David Ower was there to deposit it into the net for his first goal of the season and the 1-0 lead.

Eastment made up for the mishap in the second half when he punted the ball three-quarters of the way down the field to a waiting Chris Wondolowski who settled the ball off his chest. The ball landed at the feet of Rusty Phillips who took a hard shot from 18-yards out and ran it in on the floor on the left side.

The winning goal came in the 63rd minute when a hand ball by the Tritions (6-4-0, 4-4-0 CCAA) left Chico State with a direct kick just above the box. Wondolowski's shot hooked into the upper corner of the box for the unassisted goal, his team-leading sixth of the season.

Wildcats downed by Redhawks
(Sep. 30) SEATTLE-Seattle University scored four minutes into the match as the Redhawks downed Chico State 4-1 in a non-conference match Monday afternoon in Championship Field.

Chico State drops to 2-7 overall, while Seattle University improves to 6-4-1.

The Redhawks took advantage of their first scoring opportunity, attacking the Chico net with fury. In the fourth minute, Seattle got a great look at a header from 10 yards out, but the shot was saved off the line by a Wildcat defender. Nick McCluskey beat a pack of players to the loose ball and headed in the game's first goal.

Chico suffered an even bigger blow in the 28th minute when defender Jesse Grigg was sent off for receiving his second caution of the game. In what was not too physical of a contest, a total of five cards were issued in the first 28 minutes of play.

The Redhawks were not able to take advantage of the short-handed Wildcats throughout the remainder of the first half, but were able to wear Chico down in the second frame. Seattle scored twice in the first 17 minutes of the second half to put the game away.

The Wildcats gained some life with a goal of their own in the 70th minute when Rusty Phillips pounded home a cross from Chris Wondolowski.

The Redhawks out-shot the Wildcats 26-8 in the match, including a 16-3 advantage in shots on goal. Both teams took four corner kicks in the game.

Wildcats fall to Falcons, 4-0
(Sep. 28) SEATTLE - Jeremy Yerkes snapped a scoreless tie and ignited a run of four second-half goals as Seattle Pacific University defeated Chico State 4-0 before a capacity crowd of 992 fans at Interbay Stadium Saturday night in a nonconference men's soccer game.

Michael Brkich, playing against his former team, set-up the Yerkes goal and converted a penalty kick for the Falcons' (5-3-1) second goal. Ross Vaillancourt and Brent Egbert also scored.

Seattle Pacific, winless in its last two outings, took command from the outset and finished with a 14-1 advantage in shots and 7-0 in corner kicks. But, thanks to the shot-stopping heroics of goalkeeper Dustin Eastment, the Wildcats (2-6-0) remained in the game until midway through the second period.

Chico State got off only the sole shot, but it nearly was the first goal of the game. Chris Wondolowski struck an 18-yard shot which was blocked on the goal line by defender Matt Laughlin and then collected by goalie James Ward.

Chico plays at Seattle University Monday afternoon before returning home.

Wildcats upend short-handed Warriors, 4-1
(Sep. 22) TURLOCK - Chris Wondolowski had two goals and two assists as the Wildcats defeated Cal State Stanislaus, 4-1 in CCAA men’s soccer action Sunday.

The Warriors were forced to play one-man down for 85 minutes as CSU Stanislaus defender Robbie Handy was given a red card at the 5:06 mark when he committed a foul inside the box.

Wondolowski scored the penalty kick for the Wildcats and the team never looked back. Chico State scored another quick goal — this time at the 6:15 mark when Brian Phillips knocked in a shot off a Wondolowski pass.

Wondolowski added his second goal for Chico State in the 37th minute to give the Wildcats a 3-0 lead.

CSU Stanislaus got its goal in the 60th minute on a Steve Castaneda shotl to pull within two.

Chico State (2-5-0, 2-3-0 CCAA) added a fourth goal with less than three minutes to play when Richard Guzman scored on a Wondolowski pass.

For the day, Wondolowski had two goals and two assists. The Wildcats outshot the Warriors 20-11.

Wildcats downed 5-0 by 'Runners
(Sep. 20) Bakersfield, Calif - The Cal State Bakersfield men’s soccer team geared up its offense Friday night, scoring five times to defeat Chico State 5–0 on the CSUB Main Soccer Field.

Bakersfield scored twice in the first half before a three–goal barrage over a 12–minute span in the second half brought the Wildcats’ hope to an end. Five different players scored for CSUB.

CSUB got the only goal it would need in the 11th minute, when junior Imanol Hernandez found the net after Chico missed an opportunity to clear a cross. The Widlcats had a chance to jump back into the match moments later when Chris Wondolowski forced CSUB goalkeeper Josh Wicks off his line, but a Bakersfield defender raced back and cleared the ball off the line to keep the ‘Runners shutout intact.

Wildcats lose to Aggies
(Sep. 17) UC Davis defeated Chico State, 3-0, in a California Collegiate Athletic Association men's soccer game in front of 273 at Aggie Field Tuesday afternoon.

With the victory, UC Davis improves to 5-1-1 on the season and evens its record at 1-1 in conference play while Chico State falls to 1-4, 1-2 in CCAA action.

UC Davis’ first goal came in the 20th minute when Jared Ramsey’s low drive from the top of the box got by a diving Scott Doty.

The score remained 1-0 throughout the half with the Aggies outshoting the Wildcats 8-1 in the half.

Early in the second half, Davis scored again on a Ryan Shaw header off a cross from Jeremy Warner.

The Wildcats did have chances in the second half. On two occasions Wildcat forwards briefly found themselves one-on-one with Aggie keeper Nic Platter. Platter made saves on both attempts to thwart any opportunity.

The Aggies scored the final goal when Matthew Doty was called for a handball inside his own box. Peter Barrick converted the penalty kick in the 85th minute to close out the scoring.

Wildcats fall to unbeaten Sonoma State 3-
(Sep. 14) Chico State's spirited comeback attempt came up just short in a 3-2 loss to Sonoma State in an intense California Collegiate Athletic Association North Division matchup Saturday night. Sonoma jumped out to a 3-0 lead with goals by Brian Coyne, Ryan Smith and Tony Bussard in the first 25 minutes. From there they held on despite being outshot 13-6 in the second half to improve to 5-0 overall and 2-0 in the CCAA. Sonoma took better advantage of its opportunities as it was outshot 21-12 by Chico in the match. It appeared to be one-sided contest at halftime, but the Wildcats stormed back in the second frame to make it a game.

Two key plays highlighted Sonoma's victory. Chico State player Ricardo Guzman missed a wide open volley in the waning minutes, skipping it off the center crossbar above the net from short distance. Shortly after, Sonoma State goalkeeper Steven Christensen made an outstanding save, getting his fist on Chris Wondolowski's header after it was already behind him, sending it just out of danger. Christensen and fellow goalkeeper Matt Bernard combined for seven saves on the night.

Chico State's record dipped to 1-3 overall and 1-1 in the CCAA.

Wondolowski finessed a soft liner over the head of Christensen for his team-high third goal of the season with thirty minutes to play. He also had an assist in the contest. Rusty Phillips scored the other Wildcat goal five minutes earlier on Wondolowski's assist, but Sonoma's defense tightened up and refused to falter the rest of the game.

Chico State travels to face rival UC Davis Tuesday to begin a five-game road trip. The Wildcats don't return home until October 4th when they host UC San Diego.

Chico State men win CCAA opener
(Sep. 11) How easy is it to forget about a frustrating preseason? What frustrating preseason?

The Chico State men's soccer team erased the memories of an 0-2 start with a CCAA-opening 3-1 victory over visiting San Francisco State Wednesday night at University Stadium. Kevin Kuiper, Dustin Tong, and Chris Wondolowski scored first-half goals and the Wildcats (1-2-0, 1-0-0 CCAA) held off the Gators (1-5-0, 0-1-0 CCAA).

The first-half scoring outburst was a welcome sight for the Wildcats, who hadn't found the back of the net for over a game and a half. But Kuiper put an end to that quickly when he volleyed in Wondolowski's waist-high cross just four minutes into the match. Kuiper assisted on the second goal, touching the ball back to Tong, who rifled a low liner into the net from 23 yards out. Wondolowski put the finishing touches on the half by dribbling around three defenders, including goalkeeper Gabriel Hall, and knocking the ball into the empty net. Ricardo Guzman assisted on the goal.

San Francisco State's Paul Carter ended Chico State's shutout bid in the 76th minute when he pounded a low liner into the left hand corner of the net off a free kick from about 22 yards out.

The Wildcats are back in action Saturday night against Sonoma State. They'll take part in the second half of a doubleheader. The Chico State and Sonoma State women will kick off the festivities at 5 p.m. and the men's game will follow at approximately 7:30.

Wildcats miss opportunities in 2-0 loss
(Sep. 6) The Chico State men's soccer team outshot visiting Western Washington 21-8 but never found the back of the net in a 2-0 loss Friday night at University Stadium. The Wildcats (0-2) got three shots apiece from Dustin Tong, Jesse Grigg, Chris Wondolowski, Carl Ricco, but their scoreless streak extended past a game and a half.

Western Washington's Paul Nissley and Joel Saulter each scored as the Vikings won their second straight and improved to 2-2 overall. Saulter broke a scoreless deadlock in the 51st minute when he headed in Filomon Afenegus' free kick into the side netting. Nissley added the insurance score in the 83rd minute when Kory Pope got a ball across the mouth of the goal with Chico State goalkeeper Dustin Eastment out of position after a challenge.

The Wildcats are back in action Wednesday night when they open up CCAA play against San Francisco State at 7:30.

Western Washington will end its five-game trip through Northern California at UC Davis Sunday.

Wildcats blow 2-0 lead in season opener
(Sep. 4) The 2002 version of Chico State men's soccer looked dominant for the first 45 minutes of its season Wednesday night, taking a 2-0 lead against Notre Dame de Namur on goals by Chris Wondolowski and ustin Tong. Then the Wildcats came back down to Earth. Notre Dame scored three unanswered goals in the final 22 minutes of the match and Tong missed a penalty kick with two minutes remaining as the visiting Argonauts spoiled Chico State's season opener 3-2 in front of 389 fans.

The Wildcats (0-1) controlled the first half, firing off 10 shots to Notre Dame's (1-2-1) four. Tong opened the scoring in the 35th minute when he buried a shot from 25 yards out. Rusty Phillips earned the assist. Wondolowski teamed up with Kevin Kuiper in the 40th minute, one-timing his bouncing cross past Notre Dame goalkeeper Mike Whittaker, to make it 2-0.

The Wildcats remained in control until Notre Dame's Jason Silvius rebounded the deflection of his own penalty kick in the 68th minute to make it 2-1. The Argonauts took advantage of the momentum the goal gave them quickly as Anthony Marinic pounded home Erik Michon's pass on a breakaway to knot the score at 2-2. Edward Hackbarth connected on a direct free kick from 20 yards out that proved to be the game winner in the 87th minute.

Chico State did have a chance to tie the score when Ricardo Guzman was pulled down inside the box with 2:03 to play, but Tong's kick pounded off Whittaker's chest and Guzman's rebound sailed high above the goal.

The Wildcats will be back in action at home Friday night against Western Washington. The match is scheduled to kick off at 7:30.