Mustangs Head To Florida, Play UCF On Sunday

Go smu! Aaron Simmons
Go smu!
Aaron Simmons
Go smu!

Oct. 11, 2012

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SUNDAY, OCT. 14, 2012 - 6 PM CT

The Last Meeting
October 1, 2011
Westcott Field
Mustangs Fall To No. 14 UCF, 4-2, In Conference Opener
DALLAS (SMU) - The SMU men's soccer team was defeated by No. 14 UCF, 4-2, in the Conference USA opener Saturday night at Westcott Field. Ben Hill and Damian Rosales scored for the Mustangs. With the loss, SMU moves to 5-4 on the season and is 0-1 in league play. UCF improves to 8-1-1 on the year and holds a 2-0 conference mark.

SMU (8-2-2, 4-0 C-USA) vs. UCF (4-4-3, 1-1 C-USA)
SMU holds a 3-2-2 edge in the all-time series against UCF. The teams last squared off on Oct. 1, 2011, as the then-No. 14 Knights defeated the Mustangs, 4-2, at Westcott Field.

The Mustangs are No. 17 in this week's NSCAA National Rankings. SMU is ranked first in the Midwest Region.

Tyler Engel and Jaime Ibarra swept the weekly Conference USA honors, while the entire SMU back line - Michael King, Amaury Ponce, Damian Rosales and Aaron Simmons - was named to the TopDrawerSoccer National Team of the Week after the Mustangs posted back-to-back shutouts in wins against No. 20 Tulsa and Kentucky last week. Engel was named the C-USA Offensive Player of the Week after recording a game-winning goal against Kentucky, a game-winning assist versus Tulsa and adding another assist (Kentucky). Ibarra was tabbed the C-USA Defensive Player of the Week for the second consecutive week as he made nine saves and extended his shutout streak to three games after posting back-to-back clean sheets. King, Ponce, Rosales and Simmons were instrumental in helping Ibarra shut down the opposition as the Mustangs extended their unbeaten streak to nine games.

SMU men's soccer team defeated Kentucky, 2-0, Oct. 6 at Westcott Field. Engel opened the scoring for the Mustangs with a penalty kick in the 65th minute after Castillo was taken down in the box. Engel converted the opportunity for his fifth goal of the season and a 1-0 SMU lead.

Castillo added insurance with a goal of his own in the 75th minute. Engel sent a long through pass from the right side to Castillo, who ran onto the ball and tapped it in from eight yards out.

The Mustang defense once again shut down the opposition following another golden night in net by Ibarra. The junior made five saves en route to his third consecutive shutout and fifth clean sheet of the season.

SMU defeated No. 20 Tulsa, 1-0, Oct. 3 at Westcott Field. Freshman Brenden Lee scored his first collegiate goal, the eventual game-winner, in the 51st minute. Rosales led a pass up the right side for Engel. Engel sent a cross to the far side of the box and Lee volleyed the ball home from five yards out for a 1-0 Mustang lead.

Ibarra continued his stellar season as he recorded his second consecutive shutout, making four saves on the night. The shutout was his fourth clean sheet of the season.

Tulsa's best chance to score came in the 83rd minute as Stephen Roberson came in for a one-on-one and was challenged by Ibarra. Ibarra made the initial save but the ball continued toward the net until Simmons ran back to kick the ball off of the goal line and preserve the win for SMU.

Goalkeeper Jaime Ibarra has been solid in net for the Mustangs this year. The junior is currently riding a three-match shutout streak (Oct. 6 vs. Kentucky, Oct. 3 vs. No. 20 Tulsa and Sept. 29 at No. 23 UAB). He also blanked the opposition in back-to-back games Sept. 14-16, and even saved a penalty kick on Sept. 14 against Oakland and on Sept. 20 versus CSU Bakersfield. Ibarra has six games this year with six or more saves and has recorded 70 total stops this season, which ranks him fourth nationally. He averages 5.83 saves per game (11th NCAA) and holds a 87.5% save percentage (5th NCAA).

SMU has made the NCAA Tournament in each of the past two seasons and in 16 of the past 18 years. The Mustangs reached the Elite Eight in 2010, taking No. 4 North Carolina to extra time before falling on penalty kicks. Overall, the program has 28 postseason appearances, going 31-22-7. The Mustangs advanced to the College Cup in 2000 and 2005.

SMU continues its Florida road trip with a match at FIU on Oct. 17.