December 16, 2011

Matadors Mourn Loss of Ryan Rossi, Former Men's Soccer Forward

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. –

The Cal State Northridge Matadors are heartbroken to announce the loss of Ryan Rossi, a forward on the men's soccer team from 2002-2006, who passed away on December 11 at 8:46 p.m. at the age of 27.

"Ryan was one of my favorite players and he had a way of making everyone feel special," said head coach Terry Davila. "His gift was how he affected people in a positive way through his soccer, music and love of people. He was a tremendous competitor and teammate and we will greatly miss him."

Rossi was a key component of Coach Davila's offense throughout his career for the Matadors, earning starts and coming off of the bench to produce as his teams won a combined 48 matches in his four playing years for Northridge. Rossi finally cracked the starting 11 in his junior year and finished tied for second on the team with seven goals and added two assists for 16 points as the Matadors advanced to the third round of the 2005 College Cup.

Rossi earned All-Big West Second Team honors as a junior and repeated the feat in 2006 after a six-goal campaign.

As a freshman, Rossi earned his first collegiate goal and assist in the same match, a 4-0 win against New Mexico. As a sophomore, he scored in back-to-back victories over UNLV and San Diego and had the game-winner over the Rebels. He also scored back-to-back game winners as a junior against Big West rivals UC Irvine and Cal Poly.

For his career, Rossi scored 21 goals and had 10 assists for 52 points. He made 21 starts and appeared in a total of 74 matches, the 12th-most all-time at Cal State Northridge.

Rossi listed his greatest athletic accomplishment as winning the Dallas Cup with his club team that was coached by Keith West, a former men's soccer standout and current women's soccer head coach at CSUN.

"He will be missed," said West. "We loved him deeply and we will cherish the memories we have of him."

From his hospital bed, Ryan shared his thoughts on the world and the need for people to embrace one another. He used the phrase "Just Love It" to express the sentiment.

"'Just Love It' is about waking up everyday and saying, 'I'm gonna take full advantage of this day.'" – Ryan Rossi (11/17/84 - 12/11/11)

Click here to make a donation to the Ryan Rossi Scholarship Fund.

Click here to view Ryan Rossi's "Just Love It" Web site.

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