It’s still early in the year but several teams have shown promise in the PacWest Conference during non-conference play. Among those teams is the Academy of Art, which already has two wins after picking up just seven victories all of last year.
Fresno Pacific and Dixie State also own winning records while Hawaii Pacific and BYU-Hawaii aren’t above .500 but they no doubt have the potential to turn things around as the season rolls on.
The BR-65 Sunbirds have thrived over the course of their non-conference schedule, fashioning a 2-1-1 mark, and they are building momentum for a run at the conference championship this season.
Scoring hasn’t been an issue for Fresno Pacific, which features two players who have combined for seven goals. Jorge Chedraui has struck for four goals to go along with one assist and Renato Bustamante has come through with three goals and two assists.
Dylan Rusconi and Dallas Whitlow have also scored goals while four other players have dished out an assist.
The balance bodes well for the Sunbirds going forward as does the fact that Andrew Luis has come up with 14 saves and owns a goals against average of 1.42.
Two games into its season, the BR-135 Urban Knights (2-1-1) have been impressive, winning twice, including a 1-0 overtime thriller against San Francisco State. The Academy of Art won’t play again for another week when it opens conference play against Hawaii Pacific.
Kristof Urbanyi has fueled the offensive attack for the Urban Knights, scoring three goals and tallying an assist. Alex Walsh and Nick Santhiago have also scored goals for a team that has taken only 48 shots while allowing 75.
Kevin Mendez has anchored the goalkeeper position, earning two shutouts and racking up 21 saves.
If the offense can become more balanced as the season rolls on, the Urban Knights have the potential to be a contender in the league.
The BR-159 Red Storm is 2-1 and has outscored its opponents 6-3 during that stretch. Santiago Alejandro has paved the way for the offense, punching in a goal and tallying two assists as well.
Five other players have scored at least one goal as Dixie State has shown it has the potential to be one of the more balanced teams in the conference this year.
Bradley Trella has been strong as a goalkeeper so far, earning one shutout and racking up a total of 11 saves.
The BR-123 Sharks nailed down their first win of the year with a 2-1 victory over conference rival BYU-Hawaii. The game didn’t count in the league standings but it could go along way in terms of confidence for Hawaii Pacific.
The Sharks, who are 2-1, have been competitive in every game. Both losses came by one goal.
Divin Lazolo has led the way for the Sharks, knocking in two goals. Josch Cuerten and Christophe Campbell have scored goals as well. Eduardo Palacios has made two starts for Hawaii Pacific and has tallied three saves. Jesse Kunitomo has started once in goal for the Sharks.
The key for Hawaii Pacific is finding a way to win the close games consistently. If they do that, they are in line for a solid season.
The BR-99 Seasiders are only 1-2 but they have the potential to be one of the better teams in the league this year.
In their two wins, they have combined for eight goals and if they can find consistency within their offense, they will be tough to beat going forward. Jacob McRae is the leading scorer through three games, striking for three goals. Peter Puertas and Kye Jarvis have tallied one goal apiece. Steven Rodriguez has scored a goal as well.
Jaden Epplette has seen the majority of time in goal, starting twice and racking up six saves. Mark Stanley has started once and has tallied four saves.