The California Collegiate Athletic Association is where goal scorers go to become humble.
Of all the conferences in Division II, the CCAA seems to draw the most top-notch shot stoppers. Last year, five of the 25 best goalkeepers in the nation in terms of goals-against-average were in the CCAA, starting with Cal State L.A.’s Mike Beigarten, whose .415 GAA was second best in the nation.
Several top goalkeepers will be stopping shots in the CCAA this season. Here’s five to keep an eye on as contenders to be among the nation’s leaders in GAA.
1. Fernando Pablo Quevedo, Cal Poly Pomona
Quevedo inherits the mantle of most-talked-about GK in the CCAA following the graduation of Beigarten. Quevedo, a native of Spain, gave up just nine goals in 19 games last season, third best in DII. Quevedo also had 11 shutouts. The Broncos won both the regular season and CCAA tourney last year, but were ruled ineligible to play in the NCAA tournament because the team unknowingly fielded an ineligible player.
2. Cameron McElfresh, UC San Diego
McElfresh, a redshirt junior from Palo Alto, was all-CCAA honorable mention as a sophomore and the only Triton to play every minute last season. He recorded a 0.652 GAA, ninth best in the nation, made 46 saves and had nine shutouts.
3. Daniel Boyer, San Francisco State
Boyer, a senior from Los Alamitos, Calif., gave up less than a goal a game last season for the Gators, allowing 13 in 15 games for a 0.96 GAA.
4. Evan Drake, Cal State Monterey Bay
The Otters are not among the elite teams in the CCAA, coming off 2-7-2 record in conference play last year. But one bright spot has been the play of Drake, a senior GK from Sacramento, who made 54 saves last year in 12 games. The Otters didn’t give Drake much protection – he faced 152 shots -and gave up 18 goals, still just 1.42 per game.
5. Adrian Topete, Cal State East Bay
Playing for East Bay, which will struggle to get out of the bottom of the CCAA standings, is a challenge for a goalkeeper. But Adrian Topete kept the Pioneers in games last season and gave them a chance. He tallied 53 saves for a .707 save percentage, but gave up 22 goals in 17 games for a GAA of 1.31.