Oct 23, 2013 8:56 PM by KSBY Sports
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Last season, Mackenzie Pridham scored the game winning goal against UC Santa Barbara on a beautiful exchange in the box to end a 15 match losing streak in Santa Barbara. The goal, which was broadcast on national television, was the start of Pridham's accent to one of the best players in the country.
"He's unbelievable in the box," said Cal Poly Head Coach Paul Holocher, "when he receives the ball in that area he has a very special ability to control it and shoot with both feet."
Pridham already has 12 goals this season, which is tied for the most in the nation. He's one short of the all time program record for goals despite having a slow start to his Cal Poly career. He didn't score as a freshman, sat out the next season while having ankle surgery, and then scored just twice as a sophomore.
"I think my early years I wasn't sure if I really wanted it or not," said Pridham, "once I was able to get over that speed bump and really telling myself I want it and just to keep pushing myself to the next level, then it made things a lot easier."
Pridham was the Big West Offensive Player of the Year last season and this year is a finalist for National Player of the Year.
"First and foremost, he's a wonderful person," said Holocher, "he's a leader on and off the field."
On Friday, Pridham will get another chance to experience the Blue-Green Rivalry as the gauchos come to town for what will certainly be a sold out match at Alex G. Spanos Stadium.
"It's something that I feel has grown every year," said Pridham, "It's something that is so special, it's hard to explain in words. You have to really be there to understand it."
Kickoff between Cal Poly and UC Santa Barbara is scheduled for seven o'clock.
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