Wednesday, August 31, 2011

USL PRO Announces Finalists For First Postseason Awards

USL PRO Wednesday announced the finalists for the league's inaugural postseason awards, to be handed out Friday at a media luncheon Friday in Orlando ahead of Saturday's first USL PRO Championship Game between the Orlando City Soccer Club, winner of the American Division, and the Harrisburg City Islanders, winner of the National Division, at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Yordany Alvarez - Orlando City Soccer Club
Jhonny Arteaga - FC New York
Luke Mulholland - Wilmington Hammerheads

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Seedy Bah - Charleston Battery
Luke Mulholland - Wilmington Hammerheads
Tadeu Terra - FC New York

GOALKEEPER OF THE YEAR
Miguel Gallardo - Orlando City Soccer Club
Neal Kitson - Rochester Rhinos
Eric Reed - Charlotte Eagles

COACH OF THE YEAR
Leigh Cowlishaw - Richmond Kickers
Adrian Heath - Orlando City Soccer Club
David Irving - Wilmington Hammerheads

DEFENDER OF THE YEAR
Gareth Evans - Wilmington Hammerheads
Rob Valentino - Orlando City Soccer Club
William Yomby - Richmond Kickers

Impact's Diouf Busted For Shoplifting At Twin Cities Airport

Forward Mignane Diouf of the Montreal Impact of the North American Soccer League was arrested Saturday at the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport for allegedly shoplifting before the team boarded a flight back to Montreal after playing the NSC Minnesota Stars that night, according to the team Wednesday.

The Impact said they have hired an attorney to represent Diouf in this matter and they will not comments further until all information concering the incident has been gathered.

Whitecaps Bid Farewell To Knight

Major League's Soccer Vancouver Whitecaps, the worst team in the league this season, announced Wednesday they have released defender Wes Knight, who first joined the team in 2009 when they were part of the USL First Division.

Knight has started 10 of 12 games this season and has assisted on one goal, but has not played since July 6.

USMNT Announces October 11 Game With Ecuador In CT

The US Men's National Soccer Team announced Wednesday they will face Ecuador in a friendly match October 11 at a soon-to-be-announced site in Connecticut.

It will be the team's first game in that state since a 4-2 loss to the Czech Republic prior to the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The US, ranked 28th in the latest FIFA/Coca-Cola World Rankings, last faced Ecuador, currently ranked 64th, in March 2007 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, but haven't beaten a team from South America in 12 friendlies since.

Ecuador went winless in last month's Copa America tournament.

MLS Names Members Of Week 24 Team Of The Week

Major League Soccer announced Wednesday the members of the league's 24th Team of the Week for the 2011 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Joe Cannon - Vancouver Whitecaps

DEFENDERS
Jamison Olave - Real Salt Lake
Alain Rochat - Vancouver Whitecaps
Eric Brunner - Portland Timbers

MIDFIELDERS
Lamar Neagle - Seattle Sounders (Week 24 Player of the Week)
Mauro Rosales - Seattle Sounders
Gershon Koffie - Vancouver Whitecaps
Patrick Koffie - Chicago Fire
Sebastian Grazzini - Chicago Fire

FORWARDS
Dominic Oduro - Chicago Fire
Maicon Santos - FC Dallas

MANAGER
Jason Kreis - Real Salt Lake

HONORABLE MENTION
Kyle Beckerman - Real Salt Lake
Jay DeMerit - Vancouver Whitecaps
Jhon Kennedy Hurtado - Seattle Sounders
Jack Jewsbury - Portland Timbers
Will Johnson - Real Salt Lake
Dan Kennedy - Chivas USA
Nick LaBrocca - Chivas USA
Nick Rimando - Real Salt Lake
Brek Shea - FC Dallas
Graham Zusi - Sporting Kansas City




WPS CEO Eileraas Announces Resignation

Despite Women's Professional Soccer having its best year in its history, ending with a record crowd in Rochester, NY to see the Western New York Flash defeat the Philadelphia Independence in penalty kicks, league CEO Anne-Marie Eileraas announced his resignation Wednesday, effective September 18, to join the law department of a longtime technology client.

Eileraas joined the league in January 2010 as their general counsel and was promoted to CEO nine months later.

Fana Late Goal Gives Islanders Draw To FC Edmonton

Jonathan Fana scored on a late second-half play as the host Puerto Rico Islanders had a 1-1 draw with host FC Edmonton in North American Soccer League action Tuesday from Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium in Bayamon, PR.

The Islanders, who have already clinched a league playoff berth, are now 13-5-6 with 45 points and are seven points behind the league-leading Carolina RailHawks in the standings. Puerto Rico will host the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks Saturday.

FC Edmonton is 8-10-6 with 30 points for the fourth spot in the league standings. They will host the Silverbacks next Wednesday.

All-MLS Final Set October 4 For 2011 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Final

Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire will face the two-time defending champion Seattle Sounders for the championship of the 2011 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament October 4 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle after both teams won semifinal matches Tuesday.

The Fire, who advanced to their MLS-record sixth LHUSOC final and their first since 2006 and have won the tournament four times, defeated the only non-MLS team in the semifinals, the Richmond Kickers of USL PRO, 2-1 at Toyota Park on a 32nd minute penalty kick and a Dominic Oduro goal off a Patrick Nyarko assist in the 61st minute.

The Sounders, looking to become the first team in nearly 90 years to win the tournament three straight times, got a 40th minute goal by Fredy Montero and assisted by Alvaro Fernandez to beat FC Dallas 1-0 at CenturyLink Field.

All three MLS teams return to league action September 10, while the Kickers' season in USL PRO ended last Saturday when they lost 3-1 to the Orlando City Soccer Club, who won the league's postseason American Division championship and will host the Harrisburg City Islanders, champions of the National Division, for the league's first title Saturday at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando.

Chicago will travel to the San Jose Earthquakes, Seattle hosts Real Salt Lake and FC Dallas will be at the New Engand Revolution.

The winner of the LHUSOC championship game will receive a check for $100,000; the runner-up gets $50,000.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

USL PRO Announces Inaugural Season's All-League Teams

USL PRO Tuesday the members of the league's first-ever All-League First and Second Teams, as selected in voting by team management.

They are as follows:

2011 USL PRO ALL-LEAGUE FIRST TEAM
G - Miguel Gallardo, Orlando City Soccer Club
D - Nelson Akwari, Los Angeles Blues
D - Gareth Evans, Wilmington Hammerheads
D - Rob Valentino, Orlando City Soccer Club
D - William Yomby, Richmond Kickers
M - Yordany Alvarez, Orlando City Soccer Club
M - Jorge Herrera, Charlotte Eagles
M - Luke Mulholland, Wilmington Hammerheads
F - Jhonny Arteaga, FC New York
F - Matt Delicate - Richmond Kickers
F - Maxwell Griffin, Orlando City Soccer Club

2011 USL PRO ALL-LEAGUE SECOND TEAM
G - Neal Kitson, Rochester Rhinos
D - George Dublin, Antigua Barracuda FC
D - Colin Falvey, Charleston Battery
D - Kyle Hoffer, FC New York
D - Troy Roberts - Rochester Rhinos
M - Lewis Neal, Orlando City Soccer Club
M - Lawson Robinson - Antigua Barracuda FC
M - Jamie Watson, Orlando City Soccer Club
F - Jose Angulo - Harrisburg City Islanders
F - George Davis IV - Dayton Dutch Lions
F - Jason Yeisley, Pittsburgh Riverhounds

The league will announce its nominees Wednesday for the Coach of the Year, Defender of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player with those awards and Goalkeeper of the Year to be handed out at the league's inaugural Championship Game Media Luncheon Friday in Orlando, home to this Saturday's game between the American Division champion Orlando City Soccer Club and the National Division champion Harrisburg City Islanders at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

Red Bulls Loan Lassister To RailHawks For Rest Of 2011 Season

Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls announced Tuesday they have loaned the services of defender Tyler Lassiter, the team's 30th overall pick in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft from North Carolina State University, to the North American Soccer League-leading Carolina RailHawks for the rest of the season.

Lassiter played in two Lamaar Hunt US Open Cup games this season, but none in MLS senior level play.

MISL Lancers Named Randall Vice President Of Operations

The Rochester Lancers of the Major Indoor Soccer League announced Tuesday Rich Randall will become the team's vice president for business operations.

Randall graduated from Chruchville-Chili High School in Rocheter, NY, then earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in media management from State University of New York - Paltz, where he played on the men's soccer team.

He would later intern, then gain a full-time job with the sports marketing and public relations firm Taylor, where he earned a Pyramid Award for individual excellence.

Randall moved back to Rochester and he spent nearly the last four years with the Rochester Rhinos in the USL First Division and USL PRO.

FC Tampa Bay Signs Scott From PDL Champ Pumas For Rest Of 2011

FC Tampa Bay of the North American Soccer League announced Tuesday they have signed defender Daniel Scott, who finished his second season with the 2010-11 USL Premier Development League champion Kitsap Pumas.

Scott, whose younger brother, Zach, plays in MLS now for the Seattle Sounders, was named to the USL PDL's 2011 All-League and PDL 2011 All-Western Conference team.

Scott served as captain of the PDL's Seattle Wolves in 2009 and was named to that year's All-League and All-Western Conference teams and, in 2008, led the Tacoma Tide to first place in the PDL's Western Conference, Northeast Division.

A four-year starter at Gonzaga, he was a letterman and was named to the West Coast Conference's Second Team.

Silverbacks Sign First Reserve Player To Main Roster

Goalkeeper Eric Ati became the first player from a North American Soccer League franchise to be signed from the team's auxilliary team Tuesday when the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks selected him from the National Premier Soccer League's Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves.

A native of Cameroon whose family moved to Atlanta at age seven, he was a four-year starter at Southern Polytechnic State University in Marietta, GA, where he was named a National Soccer Coaches Association of America First Team All-American in 2010.

He led the 2010 team to an undefeated record in their conference and beat defending NCAA Division II champion Lindsey Wilson College in the playoffs. Atl was also an NPSL Southeastern Division All-Star.

The Silverbacks also announced that, due to a breach of contract, they have released forward Emsad Zahirance.

United Ties Toronto FC At Downsview Park In MLS Reserve League Play

Joseph Ngwenya's game-tying goal in the second minute of second-half stoppage time gave East Division-leading DC United a 2-2 draw to the host Toronto FC Tuesday in Major League Soccer Reserve League play at Downsview Park in North York, Ontario, Canada.

The game was originally scheduled for April 17, but was postponed due to extreme weather conditions.

United has the best record in the league at 5-0-2 with 17 points, good for the division lead, and will host the New York Red Bulls September 13 at DC United's training field.

Toronto FC is in last place in the division at 0-3-2 with two points and next faces the New England Revolution Friday at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA.

Nominees Announced For Week 24 Of MLS Save Of The Week Voting

Voting has opened for fans to select the 24th winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2011 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.


Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 24 are Dan Kennedy of Chivas USA, Tally Hall of the Houston Dynamo, William Hesmer of the Columbus Crew, Nick Rimando of Real Salt Lake and Joe Cannon of the Vancouver Whitecaps/

USWNT World Cup Roster Reunites For Two-Game Series Versus Canada

The entire 21-player US Women's National Team that advanced to the final of the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, who lost in penalty kicks to Japan in Germany, will reunite for a two-game WNT Celebration Series against Canada September 17 at Livestrong Sporting Park in Kansas City, KS and September 22 at JELD-WEN Field in Portland, OR.

Both stadiums, home to Major League Soccer's Sporting Kansas City and Portland Timbers, respectively, will host their first games with the national women's team.

The USWNT is 12-3-2 in 2011 and maintain a 49-game home winning streak.

Here is te roster for the two-game WNT Celebration Series:

GOALKEEPERS
Nicole Barnhart - Philadelphia Independence
Hope Solo - magicJack

DEFENDERS
Rachel Buehler - Boston Breakers
Stephanie Cox - Boston Breakers
Ali Krieger - FFC Frankfurt
Amy LePeilbet - Boston Breakers
Heather Mitts - Atlanta Beat
Christie Rampone - magicJack
Becky Sauerbrunn - magicJack

MIDFIELDERS
Shannon Boxx - magicJack
Tobin Heath - Sky Blue FC
Lori Lindsey - Philadelphia Independence
Carli Lloyd - Atlanta Beat
Kelley O'Hara - Boston Breakers
Heather O'Reilly - Sky Blue FC
Megan Rapinoe - magicJack

FORWARDS
Lauren Cheney - Boston Breakers
Alex Morgan - Western New York Flash
Amy Rodriguez - Philadelphia Independence
Abby Wambach - magicJack

USWNT, magicJack Goalkeeper Solo Named To Cast For Season 13 Of DWTS

Goalkeeper Hope Solo of the US Women's National Team and magicJack of Women's Professional Soccer was named Monday as one of 12 contestants participating in Season 13 of ABC's popular celebrity/reality competition Dancing With The Stars, beginning September 19.

The others taking to the dance floor this season are:

- Actress and former talk show host Ricki Lake

- Reality show star Rob Kardashian

- Transgender advocate Chaz (formerly Chastity) Bono

- Star of MTV's The Hills Kristin Cavallari

- Singer Chynna Phillips of Wilson Phillips

- Actor/comedian David Arquette

- Model and former George Clooney eye candy Elisabeth Canalis

- HLN legal expert Nancy Grace

- NBA Los Angeles Lakers player Ron Artest

- Actor J.R. Martinez of ABC's All My Children

- Carson Kressley, host of TLC's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy

Monday, August 29, 2011

Loyd, Pearce Out For USMNT Due To Injuries; Pontius, Spector Added To Roster

US Men's National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann announced Monday defenders Chris Pontius of Major League Soccer's DC United and Jonathan Spector of Birmingham City of the English Premier League have replaced injured defenders Zach Loyd of FC Dallas and Heath Pierce of Chivas USA on the roster for Friday's friendly match against Costa Rica at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Loyd strained his right hamstring Saturday in a come-from-behind 3-2 FC Dallas win over Sporting Kansas City and Pierce suffered a hamstring sprain the same night and left a 1-0 loss to Real Salt Lake in the 61st minute.

Klinsmann also announced midfielder Clint Dempsey of Fulham in the EPL, who was on the roster for Friday's game and next Tuesday's friendly in Brussels against Belgium, will stay in London to receive treatment for back spasms and will meet the teams in Brussels this Sunday.

MISL's 2011-12 Season To Start November 3

The Major Indoor Soccer League, now run as a part of United Soccer Leagues after merging with that league's planned I-League, announced Monday their 2011-12 season will kick off November 3 when the Wichita Wings will host the Missouri Comets.

The MISL will have eight teams in two divisions this season -- the Eastern (Baltimore Blast, Norfolk SharX, Rochester Lancers and Syracuse Silver Knights) and the Central (unnamed team in Chicago announced Monday), the defending league champion Milwaukee Wave, Missouri Comets and Wichita Wings).

Teams will play a 24-game regular season from November 3, 2011 to March 4, 2012 -- 16 games against teams in their own division, eight in the opposing division.

The league also announced the full list of home openers for all teams, but will release the full 2011-12 season schedule next week:

- November 3: Missouri Comets @ Wichita Wings
- November 4: Rochester Lancers @ Syracuse Silver Knights
- November 4: Wichita Wings @ Missouri Comets
- November 11: Syracuse Silver Knights @ Norfolk SharX
- November 12: Syracuse Silver Knights @Baltimore Blast
- November 13: Wichita Wings @ Milwaukee Wave
- November 19: Syracuse Silver Knights @ Rochester Lancers
- November 27: Milwaukee Wave @ Chicago

The top two teams in each division will qualify for the league's playoffs and will meet the weekend of March 9-11 in a home-and-home series with a mini game, if needed, after the second game, should the series end in a 1-1 tie.

Winners will face off the weekend of March 16-18 in a similar Championship Series format with the higher seeded team choosing which game they will host.

Repeat Winners Take NASL Weekly Awards

Four-time winner Etienne Barbara of the league-leading Carolina RailHawks and two-time winner Jeff Attinella of FC Tampa Bay were named Monday the North American Soccer League's Offensive and Defensive Players of the week, respectively.

Barbara, who leads the league with 20 goals to go with eight assists, scored a hat trick -- the first one in the NASL this season -- in a 4-2 victory over the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks.

It was his fourth multi-goal game with the RailHawks this season.

Attinella, who last won the weekly defensive honor May 24 after earning his first career shutout three days earlier in a 3-0 win over the Montreal Impact, had four saves in his team's 2-0 shutout of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.

It was the team's seventh shutout this season and a team-high fourth for Attinella, who is fifth in the league in that category.

Neagle Hat Trick Gives Him First MLS Player Of The Week Award

Seattle Sounders midfielder Lamar Neagle, who had a hat trick in Saturday's 6-2 victory over the Columbus Crew at CenturyLink Field, was named Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 24 of the 2011 season Monday.

Neagle's second and third goal scored against them are also nominated for voting for AT&T Goal of the Week, with the winner to be announced Friday.

MLS Announces October 19 Date For Postponed DCU-Timbers Game

Major League Soccer announced Monday DC United's scheduled home game this past Saturday against the Portland Timbers that was postponed due to Hurricane Irene has been rescheduled for October 19 at 8 p.m. Eastern time from RFK Stadium in Washington, DC.

The move now gives United three home games in a seven-day stretch in the final weeks of the 2011 season, sandwiched between games against the Chicago Fire October 15 and Sporting Kansas City October 22.

Four Nominees Announced For MLS' AT&T Week 24 Goal Of The Week Award

Major League Soccer Monday announced the four nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 24 of the 2011 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Lamar Neagle of the Seattle Sounders (nominated for two goals - G1 for second goal in win over Columbus Crew, G4 for third goal against them), Josh Gardner of the Columbus Crew (G2), Dominic Oduro of the Chicago Fire (G3) and Bobby Warshaw of FC Dallas (G5).

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Rapids End Winless Streak For Fire In MLS Reserve League

Qunicy Amirikwa scored on a 13th minute penalty kick and Steven Emory added an unassisted 20th minute goal as the Colorado Rapids won their first Major League Soccer Reserve League game of the season in a 2-0 shutout of the Chicago Fire Sunday at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL.

The win also snapped the Fire's five-game unbeaten streak, but Chicago retains the top spot in the league's Central/Mountain Division at 4-1-1 with 13 points. Chicago hosts Real Salt Lake next Tuesday.

The Rapids are in fifth place in the division at 1-4-1 with four points and will host the Houston Dynamo Thursday.

Draws Begin To Be A Drag For San Jose, Toronto FC

Chris Wondolowski's 87th minute goal for the San Jose Earthquakes countered an earlier goal by Toronto FCs Eric Avila as both Major League Soccer teams played to a 1-1 draw Saturday at BMO Field in Toronto.

San Jose, 5-10-11 with 26 points and in eighth place in the Western Conference standings, is now winless in their last 13 games and hopes to end the streak September 10 when they host the Chicago Fire at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara, CA.

Toronto, 4-12-17 with 24 points, is in a similar spot in the Eastern Conference standings and will travel to Crew Stadium September 10 to play the Columbus Crew.

FC Dallas Rallies To Upset Sporting Kansas City

FC Dallas snapped a three-game Major League Soccer losing streak as Ugo Ihemelu, Maicon Santos and Bobby Warshaw scored goals to take a 3-2 come-from-behind win over host Sporting Kansas City in Major League Soccer play from Livestrong Sporting Park Saturday.

Kansas City's Kei Kamara opened the scoring with a 22nd minute goal that eventually became the halftime lead, then upped the advantage to 2-0 in the 68th minute with an Omar Bravo strike.

FC Dallas is in third place in the Western Conference standings at 13-7-7 with 46 points, three behind the Seattle Sounders (13-5-6, 48) for sole possession of second place, and will travel to the New England Revolution September 10.

Kansas City is in second place in the Eastern Conference standings at 9-8-9 with 36 points after starting the season dead last in the conference after a league-record 10-game road trip to start the season. Kansas City is also five points behind the conference-leading Columbus Crew (11-8-7, 40) for first place. SKC hosts the Houston Dynamo September 10.

Red-Hot Fire Upset Defending Champion Rapids At Toyota Park

Dominic Oduro and Cory Gibbs scored goals as the host Chicago Fire won their fourth straight Major League Soccer game and ended the seven-game winning streak of the defending champion Colorado Rapids in a 2-0 victory Saturday at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL.

The Fire are in seventh place in the Eastern Conference at 4-7-15 with 27 points and will face the San Jose Earthquakes next on the road September 10.

The Rapids are in fourth place in the Western Conference at 10-7-11 with 41 points and meet the conference- and league-leading Los Angeles Galaxy September 9 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Saborio Goal Gives Real Salt Lake Victory Over Chivas USA

Real Salt Lake snapped a two-game Major League Soccer losing streak Saturday as Alvaro Saborio scored the lone goal of the game in the 11th minute of a 1-0 win over host Chivas USA at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Real Salt Lake is in fifth place in the Western Conference standings at 11-7-6 with 39 points and will next face the Philadelphia Union next Saturday at PPL Park in Chester, PA.

Chivas is in seventh place in the conference at 7-10-10 with 31 points and will host DC United September 10.

Orlando City Wins American Division Championship Over Richmond; Hosts Harrisburg Saturday For USL PRO Championship

Unassisted goals from Luke Boden and Mechack Jerome in the 19th and 45th minute, respectively, and a Lewis Neal pass to Dennis Chin in the 70th minute gave the Orlando City Soccer Club a 3-0 victory over the Richmond Kickers to take the USL PRO's inaugural American Division Championship crown Saturday at Orlando's Florida Citrus Bowl.

Orlando City, who had the league's best record and won the division's regular season title, will look to win the first USL PRO Championship next Saturday at home against the 2011 National Division champion Harrisburg City Islanders, who upset the Rochester Rhinos in Rochester, NY Friday 2-1.

Ambersley Leads Tampa Bay On Three-Game Road Winning Streak

Mike Ambersley assisted on Aaron King's goal in the ninth minute and had an unassisted goal in the 77th minute as FC Tampa Bay won their season-high third straight road game by shutting out the host Fort Lauderdale Strikers 2-0 at Lockhart Stadium in North American Soccer League play Saturday.

Tampa Bay is now 9-7-7 with 34 points and in third place in the league standings and will face the league's best team, the Carolina RailHawks, next Saturday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.

Fort Lauderdale, 6-7-10 with 28 points and in sixth place, also faces the RailHawks in an upcoming contest September 7.

RailHawks Tie Club Record For Wins, Sets Record For Seasonal Goals In Beating On Silverbacks

Etienne Barbara had an unassisted goal in the 28th minute and converted penalty kicks in the 79th and 90th minute as the Carolia RailHawks, the best team in the North American Soccer League tied a club record for wins, set a new record for goals scored in a season and clinched a first round playoff bye in a 4-2 beating of the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks Saturday at Silverbacks Park.

Barbara now has 20 goals this season and the RailHawks earned their fifth hat trick in team history and their first since July 2009.

The team tied the single-season win matk of 16, last set in 2009 when they were with the USL First Division, and scrored 47 goals so far this season.

Carolina is 16-3-4 with 51 points to lead the league standings and the RailHawks will host FC Tampa Bay next Saturday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.

Atlanta is 3-17-3 wth 12 points and will host the Puerto Rico Islanders next Saturday.

Ubiparipovic Pair Gives Impact Third Straight Victory

Sinisa Ubiparipovic scored goals in the sixth and 72nd minute as the host Montreal Impact won their third straight North American Soccer League game by shutout, beating the NSC Minnesota Stars 2-0 Saturday at Saputo Stadium.

The Impact are in seventh place in the league standings at 6-10-7 with 25 points and will travel September 7 to Bayamon, PR to face the Puerto Rico Islanders.

NSC, meanwhile, is 7-7-8 with 29 points and tied for third place in the league with FC Edmonton (8-10-5) for fourth place. The Stars will host FC Tampa Bay September 6 at NSC Stadium in Blaine, MN.

Needham Needed As Islanders Edge FC Edmonton

Jay Needham scored the game-winning goal in the second minute of second-half stoppage time as the host Puerto Rico Islanders edged FC Edmonton 3-2 Saturday in North American Soccer League play at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium in Bayamon, PR.

Shaun Saiko put Edmonton up 1-0 in the 28th minute, but Puerto Rico countered with goals by Nick Addlery and Jonathan Faria in the 40th and 43rd minute, respectively, for the halftime lead.

Kyle Porter gave the lead back to Edmonton in the final minute of regulation play before Needham struck paydirt.

With the victory, Puerto Rico clinched the second of six available playoff spots and improves to 13-5-5 with 44 points for second place in the standings.

FC Edmonton is 8-10-5 with 29 points and tied for fourth place with the NSC Minnesota Stars (7-8-8).

Both Puerto Rico and FC Edmonton play again Sunday in Bayamon.

Flash Defeat Independence On Penalty Kicks To Win 2011 WPS Championship

Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris deflected a shot from Laura Del Rio in the fifth round of a penalty kick shootout as the host Western New York Flash defeated the two-time league championship runner-up Philadelphia Independence 5-4 Saturday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY to become the 2011 Women's Professional Soccer champion, the first team to do so as an expansion team.

The game ended in a regulation tie as, after a scoreless first half highlighted by a squirrel that delayed play after team officials tried to coax it off the pitch, as Christine Sinclair posted a 64th minute goal for the Flash and Amy Rodriguez set up overtime with an 87th minute goal.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Sounders' Fury Overshadow Cunningham Becoming MLS' Leading Scorer

Jeff Cunningham of the Columbus Crew became Major League Soccer's all-time leading scorer with 134 goals, breaking a tie with former DC United star Jaime Moreno, with a 59th minute penalty kick Saturday against the host Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field, but the Sounders won for the eighth time in their last 11 games with a 6-2 victory.

Lamar Neagle tallied a hat trick for the Sounders, Mauro Rosales had a goal and two assists and Michael Fucito had a goal and an assist as Seattle improved to 13-5-9 with 48 points, putting them four points behind the Western Conference-leading Los Angeles Galaxy (14-3-9, 51) for sole possession of first place. Seattle hosts Real Salt Lake September 10.

Josh Gardner scored back-to-back goals in the game -- in the 77th minute for his Crew and in the 78th for a own goal for the Sounders.

Columbus, leading the Eastern Conference standings at 11-8-7 with 40 points, have won four of their last five games and will host Toronto FC September 10 at Crew Stadium.

City Islanders Punch Rhinos In Nose; Punch Ticket To USL PRO Championship Game

Stephen Basso and David Schofield scored first half goals to lift the visiting Harrisbirg City Islanders to a 2-1 victory over the host Rochester Rhinos and win the first-ever USL PRO National Division Championship title Friday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY and earn a berth in next Saturday's league champiomship game against the winner of Saturday's American Division Championship game between host Orlando City Soccer Club and the Richmond Kickers at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

The American Division champion will host the league championship game.

Isaac Kissi scored the lone goal for the Rhinos in the loss.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Announced Possible Championship Game Venues

US Soccer announced Friday the location for the championship game in the 2010 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament October 4 will be hosted by one of the three Major League Soccer teams left in the field -- the Chicago Fire, FC Dallas or the two-time defending champion Seattle Sounders, depending on the results of semifinal play Tuesday.

In the semifinals, the Fire will host the Richmond Kickers of USL PRO at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL and the Sounders will host FC Dallas at CenturyLink Field in Seattle.

If Seattle beats FC Dallas, no matter who wins the other game, the Sounders will host the final game.

If FC Dallas and Richmond win, Dallas will host at Pizza Hut Park.

If Chicago and FC Dallas win, the Fire will host the final game.

The Sounders are attempting to become the first team since the New York Pancyprian Freedoms (1982-84) to win the tournament three straight years. The first team to pull off the feat was the New York Greek Americans (1967-69).

SKC's Zusi, Seattle's Keller Win Week 23 Award Voting

Sporting Kansas City's Graham Zusi and Kasey Keller of the Seattle Sounders were named winners Friday of Major League Soccer's Week 23 AT&T Goal of the Week and league Save of the Week awards in fan voting.

Zusi, who was also named the league's Player of the Week and to the Team of the Week, received 38 percent of the vote to defeat newcomer Robbie Keane of the Los Angeles Galaxy, who tallied 26 percent.

Alex Dixon of the Houston Dyanmo (22 percent) was third with Camilo of the Vancouver Whitecaps and Dominic Oduro of the Chicago Fire each getting seven percent to tie for fourth.

Kellar won the Save of the Week award for his fourth time, previously capturing the honor in Weeks 3, 4 and 17 of the 2011 season.

Kellar earned 45.25 percent of the vote, followed by Nick Rimando of Real Salt Lake (26.04), Milos Kocic of Toronto FC (18.6), Bouna Coundoul of the New York Red Bulls (7.74) and Matt Reis of the New England Revolution (2.36).

Seattle Trades With Chicago To Gain Rights To Ochoa

The Seattle Sounders Friday traded a third round 2012 Major League Soccer SuperDraft pick to the Chicago Fire in exchange for swapping spots in the league's allocation lottery order to gain the rights to former US U-20 and U-23 national team player Sammy Ochoa.

Seattle, who was sixth in the order, took Chicago's fourth spot and gained Ochoa when the top three teams in the order -- Chivas USA, the Houston Dyanmo and Toronto FC -- chose to pass on taking him.

At the Sounders, Ochoa will be reunited with head coach Sigi Schmid, who served in a similar role on the US U-20 team. He also played for current Philadelphia Union head coach Peter Nowak on the US U-23 team.

Ochoa worked out for the Sounders this June and played as a guest in several MLS Reserve League games.

MLS Postpones DC United-Portland Timbers Match; New Date, Time To Be Announced Next Week

After originally moving the game from 7:30 p.m. Eastern time Saturday to 2 p.m. Eastern time to avoid the effects of Hurricane Irene on Washington, DC's RFK Stadium, Major League Soccer announced Friday DC United's planned home game against the Portland Timbers has been postponed and the league will announced a new date and time next week.

Hurrican Irene already had caused the league to reschedule both games originally planned for Sunday -- the New England Revolution at the Philadelphia Union (to September 7) and the Los Angeles Galaxy at the New York Red Bulls (to October 4).

Galaxy Shuts Out LD Alajuelense To Lead CCL's Group A

Omar Gonzalez headed in a goal off a David Beckham pass in the 38th minute and Sean Franklin fed a shot to Chad Barrett for the insurance goal as Major League Soccer's best team, the Los Angeles Galaxy, improved the league's record in 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament gams to 7-1-1 with a 2-0 Group A win over Costa Rica's LD Alajuelense Thursday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

The Galaxy lead the group at 2-0-0 with six points and will travel to Mexico's Morelia September 13.

With Los Angeles' previously scheduled MLS game at the New York Red Bulls rescheduled from this Saturday to October 4 due to Hurricane Irene, the Galaxy's next league dates are now September 5, when they travel to Sporting Kansas City, and September 9, when they host the defending league champion Colorado Rapids at The Home Depot Center.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Kilnsmann Announces Roster For Costa Rica, Belgium Games

New US Men's National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann announced Thursday his 24-man roster for upcoming friendly games September 2 against Costa Rica at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA and September 6 against Belgium at King Baudoun Stadium in Brussels.

The Costa Rica game will air on ESPN2, ESPN3.com and Galavision at 11 p.m. Eastern time, while the Belgium match will air at 2:30 p.m. Eastern time on ESPN and ESPN3.com.

Here is the roster for both games:

GOALKEEPERS
Bill Hamid - DC United
Tim Howard - Everton

DEFENDERS
Carlos Bocanegra - Rangers
Edgar Castillo - Club America
Timmy Chandler - FC Nurnberg
Steve Cherundolo - Hannover
Clarence Goodson - Brondby
Zach Loyd - FC Dallas
Michael Orozco Fiscal - San Luis
Heath Pierce - Chivas USA
Tim Ream - New York Red Bulls

MIDFIELDERS
Kyle Beckerman - Real Salt Lake
Clint Dempsey - Fulham
Maurice Edu - Rangers
Fabian Johnson - Hoffenheim (USMNT debut)
Sacha Kljestan - Anderlecht
Jeff Larentowicz - Colorado Rapids
Robbie Rogers - Columbus Crew
Brek Shea - FC Dallas
Jose Torres - Pachuca

FORWARDS
Juan Agudelo - New York Red Bulls
Jozy Altidore - AZ Alkmaar
Teal Bunbury - Sporting Kansas City
Landon Donovan - Los Angeles Galaxy

Hurricane Irene Forces Major League Soccer To Reschedule Weekend Games

Due to the projected path of Hurricane Irene along the east coast of the US, Major League Soccer Thursday announced three weekend games involving home teams in the area have been rescheduled.

DC United's game at RFK Stadium in Washington, DC against the Portland Timbers, which was to be played Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. Eastern time, is tentatively scheduled to take place now at 2 p.m. Eastern time, but the league will make a final decision on the game time by noon Friday.

The Philadelphia Union, set to play the New England Revolution Sunday at 7 p.m. Eastern time from PPL Park in Chester, PA, had their game rescheduled for September 7 at the same time.

Finally, the New York Red Bulls' game against the Los Angeles Galaxy set for Sunday at 7 p.m. Eastern time from Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ, will now take place October 4 at the same time.

Deja Vu All Over Again -- FC Dallas Beats Toronto FC In CCL Match

Wednesday night, in the 19th minute of play at BMO Field in Toronto, Jackson scored to give FC Dallas a 1-0 lead in their all-Major League Soccer matchup in Group C of the 2010-11 CONCACAF Champions League tournament against host Toronto FC.

Then, heavy rains and lightning forced officials to end the game and reschedule the game for Thursday morning and for it to be played in its entirety.

And, Thursday morning at BMO Field in Toronto, Jack Stewart, a defender loaned to them by the NSC Minnesota Stars of the North American Soccer League and who didn't play in Wednesday's game, scored the game's lone goal in the 45th minute off a pass from Ugo Ihemelu as FC Dallas won the game 1-0 and now leads the group wth a 2-0-0 record and six points.

MLS teams competing in this year's tournament -- FC Dallas, Toronto, the Los Angeles Galaxy, Seattle Sounders and the Colorado Rapids -- are 6-1-1 in the tournament so far.

FC Dallas will return to league play Saturday at Sporting Kansas City and will host Tauro in their next CCL game September 14 at Pizza Hut Park.

Toronto, in second place in the group at 1-1-0 with three points, hosts the San Jose Earthquakes Saturday and will travel to Mexico to face Pumas September 14 in each team's third group stage game.

Brunner Blast From Chabala Leads Timbers To 1-0 Win Over Chivas USA

Eric Brunner scored the game's lone goal in the 45th minute off a Mike Chabala pass as the host Portland Timbers shut out Chivas USA 1-0 Wednesday in Major League Soccer play from JELD-WEN Field in Portland, OR.

The Timbers improved to 9-12-5 with 32 points, good for sixth place in the Western Conference standings, and will next face DC United at RFK Stadium in Washington, DC Saturday.

Chivas USA drops to 7-9-10 and 31 points for seventh place in the standings and will host Real Salt Lake Saturday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Heavy Rain, Lightning Postpones All-MLS Game In CCL

Due to heavy rain and dangerous lightning in the area of Toronto's BMO Field Wednesday, CONCACAF officials announced an all-Major League Soccer Group C match in the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament between host Toronto FC and visiting FC Dallas was postponed and will be replayed in its entirety Thursday morning at 10:15 a.m. Eastern time.

Before the postponement, Dallas took a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute off a goal from Jackson.

MLS teams in the tournament so far are 6-0-1, so there will be a first loss for the league after this game.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

MLS Signs Ochoa To Deal; Will Learn Team He'll Play For Friday

Major League Soccer Wednesday announcd former US U-20 and U-23 National Team forward Sammy Ochoa, who was born in Mexico but attended high school in the US, has signed a contract and an allocation draft will be held Friday at league headquarters in New York to determine what team will add him to their roster.

Ochoa, who played high school soccer for Riverside Poly in Los Angeles, is now out of contract with Estudiantes Tecos of Mexico's Primera Division, who signed him in February 2006, after scoring only three goals during his time there.

Ochoa's older brother, Jesus, played in MLS with the Los Angeles Galaxy and Chivas USA and trialed this June with the Seattle Sounders.

Chivas USA has the first opportunity to sign Ochoa, but has passed on taking players available in the last two dratfs -- current US Men's National Team player Benny Feilhaber (New England Revolution) and former Michigan Wolverine star Soony Saad (Sporting Kansas City).

Netherlands Are New Number One Men's Team In The World; US Up To 28th

The Netherlands knocked Spain off its over-year-long spot at the top of the monthly FIFA/Coca-Cola World Rankings, released Wednesday.

Spain drops only to second, followed by Germany (unchanged), England (up two spots), and Uruguay (unchanged) in the top five. The second five starts with Brazil (down two), followed by Italy (up one), Portugal (down one), Argentina (up one) and Croatia (down one) rounding out the top tem teams this month.

The US Men's National Team, which saw Jurgen Klinsmann take over as head coach after the firing of Bob Bradley, rise from 30th to 28th, but are still the second-best team in CONCACAF behind Mexico, who were unchanged in 20th.

Bradley's last game with the team was a 4-2 loss to Mexico in the championship game of the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA June 25.

Klinsmann's debut as head coach saw the US play to a 1-1 draw August 10 against Mexico at Philadelphia's Lincoln Financial Field.

The US plays two more games before the next rankings are released September 21 -- hosting Costa Rica at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA September 2 and traveling to Belgium September 6.

MLS Names Members Of Week 23's Team Of The Week

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday the members of the league's 23rd Team of the Week for the 2011 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Matt Reis - New England Revolution

DEFENDERS
Jhon Kennedy Hurtado - Seattle Sounders
Julius James - Columbus Crew
Bobby Boswell - Houston Dynamo
Leo Gonzalez - Seattle Sounders

MIDFIELDERS
Diego Chara - Portland Timbers
Graham Zusi - Sporting Kansas City (MLS Week 23 Player of the Week)
Benny Feilhaber - New England Revolution
Brad Davis - Houston Dynamo

FORWARDS
Milton Caraglio - New England Revolution
Dane Richards - New York Red Bulls

MANAGER
Peter Vermes - Sporting Kansas City

HONORABLE MENTION
Darrius Barnes - New England Revolution
Kyle Beckerman - Real Salt Lake
Geoff Cameron - Houston Dynamo
Fabian Espindola - Real Salt Lake
Dan Gargan - Chicago Fire
Luis Gil - Real Salt Lake
Omar Gonzalez - Los Angeles Galaxy
William Hesmer - Columbus Crew
Dejan Jakovic - DC United
Jack Jewsbury - Portland Timbers
Nick LaBrocca - Chivas USA
Chad Marshall - Columbus Crew
Jimmy Nielsen - Sporting Kansas City
Jeff Parke - Seattle Sounders
Jorge Perlaza - Portland Timbers
Robbie Rogers - Columbus Crew
Zach Scott - Seattle Sounders
Seth Sinovic - Sporting Kansas City
Ricardo Villar - FC Dallas

Rapids Deal With Draw Against Real Espana, Leads CCL Group B Play

Julio Rodriguez's unassisted 86th minute goal allowed host Real Espana of Honduras and the Colorado Rapids of Major League Soccer to play to a 1-1 draw Tuesday in Group B play in the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament.

Jeff Larentowicz put the Rapids on top in the 45th minute off a Ross LaBauex assist.

The Rapids lead the group after two games of the six-game schedule at 1-0-1 with four points and will next host Mexico's Santos Laguna September 13 at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO.

Colorado returns to MLS play Saturday at home against the Chicago Fire.

Fernandez Goal Gives Sounders Win In Mexico Over Defending CCL Champion Monterrey

Assisted by Pat Noonan in the 19th minute, Alvaro Fernandez's goal gave Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders the lead in Group D play at the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament with a 1-0 victory over defending champion Monterrey Tuesday at Technological Stadium in Monterrey, Mexico.

It was Monterrey's first loss at home in CCL play.

The Sounders are 2-0-0 with six points in the six-round group phase and will next travel to Costa Rica to face Herediano September 14.

Seattle returns to MLS play Saturday when they play at the Columbus Crew.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

DC United Signs McDonald To New Deal

Major League Soccer's DC United announced they have signed defender Brandon McDonald, who joined the team in June from the San Jose Earthquakes in exchange for allocation money, to a new contract.

Since joining United, he has been part of four shutouts over nine games.

In 2 1/2 seasons with the Earthquakes, McDonald started 54 of 58 games.

McDonald was drafted 46th overall in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft by the Los Angeles Galaxy and played 16 games that season before joining the Earthquakes in 2009.

MISL's Comets, AFL's Command Announce Strategic Partnership

The Missouri Comets of the Major Indoor Soccer League and the Kansas City Command of the Arena Football League announced Tuesday a strategic partnership to combine resources.

Both teams will share the same staffs in the areas of ticket and sponsorship sales, marketing and communications and other relative areas.

The Comets play home games at the Independence Events Center in Independence, MO, while the Command host games at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, MO.

Nominees Named For Week 23 MLS Save Of The Week

Voting has opened for fans to select the 23rd winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2011 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.

Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 22 are Matt Reis (New England Revolution), Bouna Coundoul (New York Red Bulls), Kasey Keller (Seattle Sounders), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake) and Milos Kocic (Toronto FC)

Wave Extends Contract For Feenstra Two More Years

The Milwaukee Wave of the Major Indoor Soccer League announced Monday they have extended the contract of goalkeeper Marcel Feenstra, who was named the 2011 Championship Game Most Valuable Player, for two more seasons.

Feenstra saved over 115 goals last season and finished with a .779 save percentage.

USL AGM Moves From Tampa To Clearwater Beach

After spending the last six years in downtown Tampa, United Soccer Leagues announced Monday the 2011 Annual General Meeting will take place in Clearwater Beach, FL December 15-18 at the Hyatt Regency.

The city will also be the site for the USL Major Beach Soccer National Championships, to be held December 17-18, and will replace the involvement of the USL SoccerFest that had been held in Tampa.

The highlight of the conference, the annual Hall Of Fame and Awards Dinner, will take place December 16.

FC Edmonton Sweeps NASL Weekly Awards After Snapping Losing Streak

After snapping an eight-game losing streak Sunday by defeating the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks, Michael Cox and Paul Hamilton of FC Edmonton were named the North American Soccer League's Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week Monday.

Cox scored two of the team's three goals in the shutout and Hamilton was part of the team's defensive unti that guided them to that result.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Unio Welcomes Back Holder After Loan To USL PRO's FC New York

Major League Soccer's Philadelphia Union announced the return to their roster of goalkeeper Thorne Holder Monday after loaning him to FC New York of USL PRO, where he went 2-2-1 in five games and posted two shutouts.

At Philadelphia before the loan, he played on their MLS Reserve League team against the New York Red Bulls, DC United and New England Revolution, and he saw 45 minutes of action in a 1-0 exhibition win July 20 against Everton of the English Premier League.

Nominees Announced For Week 23 AT&T Goal Of The Week Voting

Major League Soccer Monday announced the five nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 23 of the 2011 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Graham Zusi of Sporting Kansas City (G1), Camilo of the Vancouver Whitecaps (G2), Alex Dixon of the Houston Dynamo (G3), Robbie Keane of the Los Angeles Galaxy (G4) and Dominic Oduro of the Chicago Fire (G5).

Zusi Names MLS' Best Player For Week 23 Of Season

Sporting Kansas City midfielder Graham Zusi was named the Major League Soccer Player of the Week Monday for Week 23 of the 2011 season.

Zusi had two goals in the team's 3-1 win over the Portland Timbers Wednesday, with one of them getting him nominated for AT&T Goal of the Week honors, and he played all 90 minutes in Sunday's 1-0 win over DC United.

He has five goals and four assists this season, shattering his previous career highs.

Cox Brace Leads FC Edmonton To Snap Eight-Game Losing Streak

Michael Cox's goals in the 71st and 76th minute were enough for host FC Edmonton to see their eight-game North American Soccer League losing streak end Sunday with a 3-0 victory over the worst team in the league, the Atlanta Silverbacks, at Foote Field in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Shawn Saiko scored first for Edmonton at the 63rd minute mark.

FC Edmonton is 8-9-5 with 29 points and is tied for fourth place in the single standings table with the NSC Minnesota Stars (7-7-8). Edmonton next plays two games -- one Saturday, the other next Tuesday -- at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium to face the Puerto Rico Islanders.

Atlanta has the league's worst mark at 3-16-3 with 12 points and will host the league's-best Carolina RailHawks Saturday.

Anor Lone Goal Leads MLS RL; Crew Shuts Out Union

Bernando Anor, assisted in the 70th minute by Khai Celestine, a youth academy student, scored a Major League Soccer Reserve League-leading fourth goal of the season as the Columbus Crew shut out the Philadelphia Union 1-0 Sunday at Crew Stadium.

The Crew, 4-1-0 with 12 points and in second place in the East Division, will host Toronto FC next on September 11.

Philadelphia is at 1-5-1 with four points, in fifth place in the division, and hosts the New England Revolution next Monday.

Red Bulls Shut Out Revolution In MLS RL Action At Gillette Stadium

Carlos Mendes scored in the 32nd minute off a John Rooney assista dn Corey Hertzog fired off an unassisted 49th minute goal as the visiting New York Red Bulls shut out the host New England Revolution 2-0 in Major League Soccer Rseserve League contest at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA Sunday.

The Red Bulls are in fourth place in the East Division at 2-4-0 with six points and doesn't play another Reserve League game until October 1 against Toronto FC at BMO Field.

New England is 3-3-1 with 10 points and in third place in the division. The Revolution are at the Philadelphia Union next Monday, then host Toronto FC September 2.

Garey Goal Leads Dynamo Over Real Salt Lake In MLS RL PLay

Jason Garey was assisted by Adam Moffat and Kofi Sarkodie in the 69th minute on the lone goal in a 1-0 Major League Soccer Reserve Leage victory by the Houston Dynamo over Real Salt Lake Sunday at Robertson Stadium.

Houston is now in second place in the Central/Mountain Division at 4-2-0 with 12 points, two points behind the Chicago Fire (4-0-1, 13) for sole possession of the lead. The Dynamo next faces the Colorado Rapids at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO September 1.

Real Salt Lake (3-2-0, nine points) is tied for third in the division with FC Dallas (3-2-0) and next plays at the Fire September 6.

Lowry Scores First Two Goals For Timbers Reserves In Win Over Whitecaps Reserves

Peter Lowry scored his first two goals in the Major League Soccer Reserve League for the Portland Timbers Sunday in a 3-2 win over the Vancouver Whitecaps Reserves at JELD-WEN Field.

Brian Umony added his second goal in as many games for Portland, now 4-2-1 with 13 points and in second place in the West Division standings, trailing the best team in the league, the Seattle Sounders (7-1-0, 21). Portland next hosts the Los Angeles Galaxy September 3.

Omar Salgado scored for Vancouver off a Caleb Clarke assist and Mustapha Jarju added another in their loss.

Vancouver, 1-4-2 with five points, will meet Chivas USA September 3 at The Home Depot Center, Chivas (1-2-2, five) is tied with Vancouver for fourth place in the West standings.

Fire Puts Water On Losing Streak, Shuts Down Toronto FC

Dominic Oduro scored off a Gonzalo Segares assist in the 16th minute and Pavel Prado fed an insurance goal pass to Dan Gargan in the 69th minute as the host Chicago Fire snapped a 10-game losing streak in a 2-0 shutout of Toronto FC in Major League Soccer play at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL Sunday.

The Fire last won a game June 12th and won their third game of the season Sunday..

Chicago is now 3-7-15 with 24 points for seventh place in the Eastern Conference. The Fire host the defending league champion Colorado Rapids Saturday.

Toronto FC is in a tie for eighth place in the Eastern standings at 4-12-11 and 23 points, joining the New England Revolution (4-11-11). Toronto hosts the San Jose Earthquakes Saturday at BMO Field.

Kamara Goal Gives SKC Win Over DC United; Moves To Second In Eastern Conference

Kei Kamara's 19th minute unassisted goal was all host Sporting Kansas City needed Sunday to defeat DC United 1-0 in Major League Soccer play at Livestrong Sporting Park in Kansas City, KS and move them into second place in the Eastern Conference standings at 9-7-7 with 36 points, five behind the conference-leading Columbus Crew (11-7-7, 40) for first place.

Kansas City will host FC Dallas Saturday.

DC United is in sixth place in the Eastern standings at 7-7-10 with 31 points and will host the Portland Timbers Saturday.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Neal Guides Orlando City To Win Over Battery: Face Kickers For USL PRO American Division Championship

Lewis Neal assisted Max Griffin on the game's first goal in the 44th minute, then scored off a Jamie Watson pass in the 118th minute as the USL PRO regular season champion Orlando City Soccer Club of the American Division edged the Charleston Battery 3-1 in overtime Saturday at the Florida Citrus Bowl and move into the division championship round, which they will host next Saturday against the second-seeded Richmond Kickers.

After Nicki Pateson evened the game in the 64th minute of regulation for te Battery, Ian Fuller connected with Dennis Chin on a goal in the 100th minute for Orlando City.

Islanders Slip Past FC Tampa Bay

The Puerto Rico Islanders extended their North American Soccer League winning streak to four games and ended a season-long four-game overall unbeaten streak and similar four-game home winning streak of FC Tampa Bay in a 2-1 victory Saturday at Juam Ramon Loubriel Stadium in Bayamon, PR.

After Mike Ambersley put Tampa Bay on top with a 1-0 goal in the 30th minute, Noah Delgado evened the game with an assist to Nick Addlery in the 33rd minute for the Islanders, but David Foley had no trouble scoring goals, especially an unassisted goal in the 75th minute, for the victory.

Puerto Rico is in second place in the league's standings at 12-5-5 with 41 points and will play their next two games next Saturday and the following Tuesday against FC Edmonton in Bayamon.

RailHawks Back On Track, Snap Losing Streak By Beating Strikers

Etienne Barbara's 30th minute penalty kick and a pass from Pablo Campos to Matt Watson scored in the 51st minute as the league-leading Carolina RailHawks snapped a three-game losing streak in the North American Soccer League with a 2-0 shutout of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers Saturday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.

The RailHawks, 15-4-3 with 48 points, take on the league's worst team in the Atlanta Silverbacks at Silverbacks Park next Saturday.

Fort Lauderdale, 6-6-10 with 28 points and in fifth place, hosts intrastate rival FC Tampa Bay next Saturday.

Draw To Revolution Just Makes Red Bulls Mad

Despite goals by Dane Richards (from Tim Ream in the 33rd minute and with help from Joel Lindpere and Rafael Marquez in the 53rd and 81st minute), the New York Red Bulls saw their winless streak expand to six games since beating Toronto FC June 6 and are now 0-10-4 in Major League Soccer games in Foxborough, MA with a 2-2 tie to the New England Revolution.

New Designated Player Milton Caraglio scored his team's goals in the 15th minute unassisted and with gelp from Kelly Mansally in the 27th minute.

The Red Bulls are in fifth place in a tight Eastern Conference standings race at 6-6-14 with 32 points and will host the league's best team, the Los Angeles Galaxy of the Western Conference, next  Sunday.

New England is tied for seventh place in the division with Toronto FC as both teams share a 4-11-11 record in 23 points. They meet the Philadelphia Union next Sunday.

Getting Above Mendoza Line (Or Spot) Helps Crew Edge Union

Andres Mendoza's penalty kick in the 50th minute as the game-winner as Major League Soccer's Eastern Conference-leading Columbus Crew edged the Philadelphia Union 2-1 Saturday at Crew Stadium for their fourth win in their last five games.

Emilio Renteria scored in the 37th minute for Columbus to open the scoring, which Philadelphia's Veljko Paunovic countered with a leveling goal in the 42nd minute.

Philadelphia is now winless in its last five games.

The Crew are 11-7-7 with 40 points to lead the conference and head to CenturyLink Field this Saturday to face the Seattle Sounders.

Philadelphia is in third place in a tight conference at 8-6-10 with 34 points. The Union will host the Seattle Sounders next Sunday.

Dynamo's Dixon Extends Team's Unbeaten Streak To Five Games

Alex Dixon's goal in the final minute of regulation allowed the Houston Dynamo to defeat Real Salt Lake 3-2 Saturday in Major League Soccer play at Robertson Stadium and kept the 2009 MLS Cup champion's winless streak in games played in the state of Texas to 19 in a row.

Fabian Espindola opened the contest with a 28th minute goal for RSL, but Brian Ching countered with a goal in the 47th minute to tie things at 1-1.

Luis Gil put RSL back on top in the 60th minute, but the Dynamo would find a way to take charge again off a Bobby Boswell goal in the 69th minute before Dixon's strike.

The Dynamo, on a five-game unbeaten streak, are in second place in the Eastern Conference standings at 8-7-11 with 35 points, six behind the Columbus Crew for the regular season conference crown.

RSL, losers of four of their last five games, is 10-7-6 with 36 points and are fifth in the Western Conference standings. They will head to The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA next Saturday to face Chivas USA.

Rapids Extend Unbeaten Streak To Six Games With Draw To Chivas

Caleb Folan and Sanna Nyassi scored goals to counter those from newcomer Juan Pablo Angel and Laurent Courtois as the defending Major League Soccer champion Colorado Rapids extended their current unbeaten streak in Major League Soccer to six games, despite a 2-2 draw to Chivas USA Saturday at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO.

The Rapids are in fourth place in the Western Conference standings at 10-6-11 with 41 points and will face the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL next Saturday.

Chivas is in sixth place in the same standings at 7-8-10 with 31 points and will travel to the Portland Timbers this Wednesday before hosting Real Salt Lake next Saturday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Rosales Goal Leads Sounders To Shutout Of FC Dallas

Mauro Rosales' 16th minute goal was all the scoring the visiting Seattle Sounders needed to shut out FC Dallas 1-0 Saturday in Major League Soccer play Saturday at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, TX.

Seattle leap-frogged over Dallas in the Western Conference standings and are in second place at 12-5-9 with 45 points, seven points away from overtaking the Los Angeles Galaxy as the league's and the conference's best team. The Sounders host the Eastern Conference-leading Columbus Crew next Saturday.

Dallas, meanwhile, fell to third at 12-7-7 with 43 points, three behind Seattle for reclaiming their spot in the standings. They take on Sporting Kansas City next Saturday at Livestrong Sporting Park.

Timbers Melt Down Whitecaps In Cascadia Cup Play

Diego Chara scored in the second minute of the game and Jorge Perlaza doubled his team's lead in the 33rd minute as the host Portland Timbers edged the worst team in Major League Soccer, the Vancouver Whitecaps, 2-1 Saturday in another game of the three-team Cascadia Cup series at JELD-WEN Field.

The other team in the series is the Seattle Sounders.

Camilo cut the Portland lead down to one with his unassisted 88th minute goal.

Portland is now 8-12-5 with 29 points and is in seventh place in the Western Conference standings. The Timbers have two games on their schedule this coming week -- hosting Chivas USA Wednesday, then traveling to DC United next Saturday.

Vancouver is 3-13-9 with 18 points and will host the Houston Dynamo Saturday at Empire Field.

Keane Scores First Goal For Galaxy In Shutout Of San Jose

Newly-signed Designated Player Robbie Keane, team captain for Ireland and a former member of Tottenham Hotspur in the English Premier League, scored his first Major League Soccer goal for the Los Angeles Galaxy in the 21st minute of an eventual 2-0 shutout of the San Jose Earthquakes Saturday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.

Mike Magee added the insurance goal during second-half stoppage time as the Galaxy, the league's best team as well as the best in the Western Conferemce, is 14-3-9 with 51 points and will travel to Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ next Saturday to face the New York Red Bulls.

San Jose, winless in their last 12 games, is 6-10-10 with 25 points and is in eighth place in the Western Conference standings and takes on Toronto FC on the road next Saturday at BMO Field.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

FC Dallas Trades Alexander To Timbers For Hall

Major League Soccer's FC Dallas traded second-year midfielder Eric Alexander to the Portland Timbers Friday in exchange for defender Jeremy Hall.

Alexander, Dallas' fourth round pick in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft, scored two goals with three assists in 39 career games, starting 16, and has a career-high 17 shots so far this season.

Hall, originally the 11th overall pick of the New York Red Bulls in the 2009 draft, was traded to Portland in November 2010.

He started 31 of 37 regular season games with the Red Bulls and assisted on two goals.

With Portland this season, he has assisted on three goals.

Strikers Gets Quinones Back From Silverbacks, Loans Them Kerr

The North American Soccer League's Fort Lauderdale Strikers Friday recalled Colombian defender Cristian Quinones from his loan with the league's Atlanta Silverbacks and have loaned them midfielder Grant Kerr for the rest of the season.

Quinones started only one game for the Strikers since his loan began June 22, while Kerr has started two of five games played for them.

Impact Shuts Out Stars In Afternoon Contest At Saputo

Ryan Pore had a first-half stoppage time unassisted goal and Mignane Diouf fed a pass to Eduardo Sebrango as the host Montreal Impact shut out the NSC Minnesota Stars Saturday in a North American Soccer League afternoon contest at Saputo Stadium.

The Impact are now 5-10-7 with 22 points, good for fourth place in the league's single standings table, while NSC is 7-7-8 with 29 points and in fourth place.

Both teams will meet again next Saturday at NSC Stadium in Blaine, MN.

Independence Disconnects magicJack; Faces Flash Next Saturday For WPS Championship

Unassisted goals from Tasha Kai in the 46th minute and Amy Rodriguez in the 81st minute carried the Philadelphia Independence to their second straight trip to the Women's Professional Soccer Championship presented by Citi next Saturday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY after shutting out magicJack 2-0 in Saturday's Super Semi at PPL Park in Chester, PA.

The Independence lost in the WPS Championship in their debut season against now-defunct FC Gold Pride.

Kickers Move Onto American Division Championship After Shootout Win Over Hammerheads

Ronnie Pascale made the game-saving penalty kick in the fifth round of a 5-4 shootout as the third-seeded Richmond Kickers advanced to the USL PRO American Division Championship Game after playing the host and second-seeded Wilmington Hammerheads to a scoreless draw through 120 minutes of play Friday at Legion Stadium in Wilmington, NC.

The Kickers will take on the winner of Saturday's other semifinal between regular season champion and top seed Orlando City Soccer Club and the fourth-seeded Charleston Battery at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

If Charleston pulls off the upset, the championship game will be played at Richmond's City Stadium; if Orlando wins, they will host the title clash.

Rhinos To Host City Islanders In USL PRO National Division Championship Next Friday

The top-seeded and regular season champion Rochester Rhinos will host the second-seeded Harrisburg City Islanders next Friday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY for the USL PRO National Division Championship after both teams won semifinal games Friday.

The Rhinos shut out the fourth-seeded Pittsburgh Riverhounds 4-0 for the fourth time this season, thanks to a goal and an assist from Issac Kissi and goals by Tyler Rosenlund, Kissi's off Tony Donatelli and a solo shot from Drew Cost.

In the other semifinal, Andrew Welker had a pair of goals and Brian Ombiji added another as the host City Ialanders edged the Los Angeles Blues 3-2 Friday at Skyline Sports Complex in Harrisburg, PA.

Josh Tudela and Erlys Garcia each scored goals for the Blues in the game.

Moffat Wins GOTW In Landslide; Kocic Gets SOTW Award

Major League Soccer announced Friday Houston Dynamo midfielder Adam Moffat was selected by fans as the Week 22 winner of the AT&T Goal of the Week award and Toronto FC goalkeeper Milos Kocic won his first league Save of the Week award.

Moffat's 40-yard-long blast to open the scoring in a 2-1 victory over the Portland Timbers last Sunday was the landslide winner, with 71 percent of the fan vote this week over Thierry Henry of the New York Red Bulls (second at 10%), Joel Lindpere of the Red Bulls and Dominic Oduro of the Chicago Fire (both tied for third at 7% each), and Benny Feilhaber of the New England Revolution (last at 5%).

Kocic earned 42.5 of this week's online voting after serving in place of regular starter Stefan Frei and stopping a possible tying goal from Will Johnson of Real Salt Lake in second-half stoppage time as Toronto preserved a 1-0 win over RSL.

Kevin Hartman of FC Dallas (31.9% of vote) was second this week, followed by Tally Hall of the Houston Dynamo (14.8% of vote), Dan Kennedy of Chivas USA (7.8%) and Sean Johnson of the Chicago Fire (3%).

Friday, August 19, 2011

Revolution Signs Moroccan Forward Zerba

Major League Soccer's New England Revolution announced the signing Thursday of Moroccan forward Monsef Zerba as the team's sixth international player of eight allowed on their roster.

Zerba last played in Greece for Iraklis FC, who were recently relegated from the country's top tier league, the Super League.

Before playing in Greece, he spent a combined ten seasons in France with teams Nancy and Nantes.

Toronto FC Ends First Round Of CCL Group Phase With MLS' Fifth Straight Win

Ryan Johnson and Julian de Guzman scored nearly back-to-back unassisted goals in the 22nd and 24th minute as Toronto FC, the last of five Major League Soccer teams competing in the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament, won their introductory Group C match 2-1 Thursday over Panama's Tauro at Rominel Fernandez Stadium in Panama City.

Joining Toronto from MLS in the 16-team field are the defending champion Colorado Rapids, the Los Angeles Galaxy, Seattle Sounders and FC Dallas.

Toronto also extended its own unbeaten streak in all competitions this season to six games (4-0-2).

Luis Moreno cut Toronto's lead in half with his unassisted 76th minute play.

Toronto FC returns to MLS play Sunday when they travel to Bridgeview, IL's Toyota Park before hosting their next CCL opponent, FC Dallas, Tuesday at BMO Field.

Fire Sets New MLS Single Season Record For Draws

Despite Sebastian Grazzini scoring an unassisted goals in the 59th minute, the host Chicago Fire set a new Major League Soccer single season record for draws as they played to a 1-1 final against DC United Thursday at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL.

Josh Wolff countered Chicago's goal in the 73rd minute off a Santino Quaranta assist.

Chicago, the worst team in the Eastern Conference, is now 2-7-15 with 21 points and will host Toronto FC this Sunday.

DC United, meanwhile, is 7-6-10 with 31 points and tied for fifth in the conference standings with the New York Red Bulls (6-6-13). DC travels to Livestrong Sporting Park this Sunday to play Sporting Kansas City.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Nielsen Announces Retirement, Joins Chivas USA As Assistant Coach

Chivas USA defender Jimmy Nielsen announced Thursday his retirement from professional soccer as a player to become an assistant coach with his current MLS employer.

Nieslen played in 290 regular season games, 275 of which he started, with the San Jose Clash (1996-99), San Jose Earthquakes (1999-2002), Kansas City Wizards, now Sporting Kansas City (2003-2010) and Chivas (2011), and had 20 goals and 10 assists in his career.

He was a five-time MLS All-Starm a four-time Best XI nominee, and the league's 2006 Defender of the Year.

Nielsen also played 28 games for the US Men's National Team, scoring one goal.

Harris Goes Under The Knife For Whitecaps

Major League Soccer's Vancouver Whitecaps announced Thursday forward Atiba Harris will return to the team at an unspecified date after undergoing surgery last Friday to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee.

Harris joined Vancouver last November after being selected fourth overall in the MLS Expansion Draft and has scored two goals and three assists and started five games this season.

Strikers Get Molares On Loan From Tigres: Hohlbein Undergoes Surgery

The Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the North American Soccer League announced Thursday the acquisition of Mexican U-21 National Team player Leopoldo "Polo" Molares on a loan for the rest of the season by UNAM Pumas of the Mexican Primera Division.

Also, the Strikers announced forward Aaron Hohlbein underwent surgery for a knee injury that has hampered him for the last two months.

Rochester Lancers Name Andracki Head Coach, General Manager

The expansion Rochester Lancers of the Major Indoor Soccer League announced Thursday veteran player and coach Billy Andracki will be the team's head coach and general manager and will be assisted on the field by Francisco "Poncho" Escos and Billy Ginther.

Andracki played collegiately at Mercer County Community College and Rutgers University.

At Mercer County, he led their team to the 1989 National Junior College Athletic Association national championship, was named an NJCAA First Team All-American the season before, and was named to the school's and NJCAA's Hall of Fame.

With the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, he led them to a runner-up finish at the 1990 NCAA national championship, losing to UCLA, but Andracki then was a third team All-American pick in 1991.

He played indoor soccer for the Milwaukee Wave, Cleveland Crunch, Tampa Bay Terror, Chicago Power, Philadelphia Kixx and the Buffalo Blizzard -- all in the National Professional Soccer League -- and outdoors for the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the American Professional Soccer Lague, the Atlanta Magic in the United Systems of Interregional Soccer Leagues, the Atlanta Ruckus and the original Rochester Rhinos of the A-League, and the MetroStars and Miami Fusion in Major League Soccer.

Andracki has served the last six seasons as the goalkeeper coach for the USL PRO's Rochester Rhinos.

Wambach's Brace Moves magicJack One Step Closer To WPS Title

Player-head coach Abby Wambach, who took over magicJack FC recently, had a goal off a Sarah Huffman assist in the sixth minute and off a penalty kick in the 57th minute as they edged the Boston Brekaers 3-1 Wednesday at Florida Atlantic University Field to advance to the next round of the Women's Professional Soccer playoffs and will meet the Philadelphia Indepenendence at PPL Park in the league's Super Semi game.this Saturday,

Rodriguez Goal Robs RailHawks Of Three-Point Victory At WakeMed

Lucas Rodriguez scored a goal off a Simone Bracalello assist in the 55th minute to give the NSC Minnesota Stars a 1-1 tie with rival Carolina RailHawks in North American Soccer League play Wednesday at WakeMed Soccer Plex.

Pablo Campos put the RailHawks on top in the third minute of the second half, but it wasn't enough to sustain things for the whole game.

Carolina still leads the league at 14-4-3 with 45 points and will host the Fort Lauderdale Strikers Saturday.

NSC is now 7-6-8 wth 29 points this season and will host the Montreal Impact Saturday.

Zuzi Brace, Saad's First Leads SKC Over Timbers

Graham Zusi struck with two unasssisted blows in the 25th and 40th minute and former University of Michigan star Soony Saad scored his first Major League Soccer goal of his career in the 73rd minute as Sporting Kansas City defeafted the Portland Timbers Wednesday 3-1 at Livestrong Sporting Park.

Also scoring his first MLS goal Wednesday was Timbers star Bright Dike off an 81st minute assist by Rodney Wallace.

Kansas City is now 8-7-9 with 33 points in the Eastern Conference standings at third place, but are two points away from taking over second in the league from the Philadelphia Union (8-5-10, 34 points) and five behind the conference-leading Columbus Crew (10-7-7-, 37).

Portland is in seventh place in the Western Conference at 7-12-5 wth 26 points and hosts the worst team in the league this season, the Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Saturday.

Boswell Blast Ties Dynamo, Revolution

Bobby Boswell scored an unassisted play in the 90th minute as the Houston Dynamo knotted the host New England Revolution 1-1 in Major League Soccer play Wednesday at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA.

The Revolution took the early lead in the fourth minute off Ryan Cochrane's solo goal.

The Dynamo are now 7-7-11 with 32 points and is in fourth place in a tightly-bunched Western Conference.

Houston is two points behind Sporting Kansas City (8-7-9, 33) for sole possession of third place, three behind the Philadelphia Union (8-5-10, 34) for holding down second place alone, and six behind the Columbus Crew (10-7-7, 37) for the conference lead.

New England is in eighth place in the Eastern Conference at 4-11-10 with 22 points, two points behind Toronto FC (4-11-11, 23) for seventh place. The Revolution host the New York Red Bulls Saturday.

Kandji Man Does It Twice For Rapids Over Isidro Metapan In CCL Play

Macoumba Kandji scored two goals and assisted in Andre Akpan's game-winning goal as the defending Major League Soccer champion Colorado Rapids edged El Salvador's Isidro Metapan 3-2 Wednesday in a Group B 2011 CONCACAF Champions League game at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO.

Allan Kardeck and Paulo Suarez scored goals for Metapan.

The Rapids return to MLS play Saturday when they host Chivas USA and newly-acquired forward Juan Pablo Angel, then hit the road to play Real Espana in CCL action Sunday.

FC Dallas Makes MLS History In Mexico In CCL Group C Opener

Marvin Chavez's unassisted goal in the 66th minute gave Major League Soccer's FC Dallas a 1-0 victory over Pumas Wednesday in a Group C game in the first round of the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament at Olympic University Stadium in Mexico and became the first MLS team to win a game on Mexican soil.

FC Dallas returns to MLS play Saturday when they host another fellow MLS team in the CCL in the Seattle Sounders, then Dallas heads to BMO Field next Wednesday for the second round of CCM play against MLS' Toronto FC.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Comets Sign Defender Junge, Re-Sign Stokic To Two-Year Deals

The Missouri Comets of the Major Indoor Soccer League announced Wednesday they have signed defender Ryan Junge and re-signed defender Stefan Stokic to two-year contracts.

Junge, drafted in the 2007 Major League Soccer SuperDraft by the Columbus Crew, started three of 13 games in their 2008 MLS Cup championship season.

In 2010, with the Omaha Vipers, now in the Professional Arena Soccer League, he scored 21 of the team's 31 defensive goals and joined Brian Harris on the MISL's All-Rookie Defensive Team.

Stokic, born in Kansas City but of Serbian heritage, began his career at age 19 in Sweden with Malmo IF before returning to the States in 2004 to play for the original MISL Kansas City Comets, where he had five goals and seven assists that season.

He also played in 2009 with the New Jersey Ironmen in the Xtreme Soccer League.

WPS Announces Winners Of 2011 Season Individual Awards

After a week of voting done with fans, media, coaches and players, Women's Professional Soccer Wednesday announced the winners of its 2011 individual postseason awards:

COACH OF THE YEAR - Paul Riley, Philadelphia Independence
- Had won the award last season
- Led team to a 11-4-3 record, including a seven-game winning streak midway through the season

US SOCCER FEDERATION ROOKIE OF THE YEAR - Christen Press, magicJack.com
- Was second on the team in goals with eight, including the first hat trick by a rookie player in league history June 30

DEFENDER OF THE YEAR - Whitney Ergen, Western New York Flash
- Led team to 13-2-2 record
- Started and played in all 90 minutes of 17 out of 18 games

US COAST GUARD GOALKEEPER OF THE YEAR - Ashlyn Harris, Western NY Flash
- One of four goalkeepers this season to play every minute of all 18 league games
- Led the league in goals against average at 1.00

MICHELLE AKERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR - Veronica Boquete, Philadelphia Independence
- Had five goals and four assists in 11 games with Philadelphia with four of the five goals being game-winning goal

CITI SPORTSWOMEN OF THE YEAR - Nikki Krzysik, Philadelphia Independence.

Johnson Backs Out Of Deal To Join MLS

After announcing Tuesday a deal had been reached, US Men's National team forward Eddie Johnson announced Wednesday he has changed his mind and will not be playing in Major League Soccer in the 2012 season.

Johnson was recently released by Fulham of the English Premier League.

Cheney Brace Captured Playoff Berth For Breakers, Final POTW Award Of WPS Regular Season

Boston Breakers forward Lauren Cheney, who led her team to the last Women's Professional Soccer playoff berth of the 2011 season by scoring both goals in a 2-0 victory over Sky Blue FC Sunday, was named the league's funal Player of the Week Wednesday.

She also set a league record for the fastest goal scored in league history, which took place 14 seconds after the opening whistle blew Sunday.

Boston will travel to magicJack.com Wednesday at FAU Soccer Field in a First Round WPS Playoff Game, with the winner heading to the Philadelphia Independence at PPL Park this Saturday for the Super Semifinal Game.

That winner will face the host and regular season champion Western New York Flash for the title next Saturday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

Angel Traded By Galaxy To Chivas USA

Made expendable after the signing Tuesday of new Designated Player and Ireland team captain Robbie Keane, Major League Soccer's Los Angeles Galaxy announced Wednesday they traded forward Juan Pablo Angel to crosstown rival Chivas USA in return for a 2012 natural third round pick in the 2012 SuperDraft.

The Colombian forward joins his third team in MLS after beginning his career with the New York Red Bulls, where he remains the team's all-time leading goal scorer with 58 from 2007 to 2010, then being traded to the Galaxy, where he scored three goals and an assist in 22 games, 17 of which he started, since coming in January 2011.

Angel is a three-time MLS AllS-Star and was a finalist for the league's Most Valuable Player award in 2007.

MLS Names Members Of Week 22's Team Of The Week

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday the members of the league's 22nd Team of the Week for the 2011 season, which is compiled each week by staffers at MLSsoccer.com and honors the outstanding players and performances of the previous week.

GOALKEEPER
Milos Kocic - Toronto FC

DEFENDERS
Julius Jones - Columbus Crew
Heath Pierce - Chivas USA
Tyrone Marshall - Colorado Rapids

MIDFIELDERS
Chris Pontius - DC United (MLS Week 22 Player of the Week)
Pablo Mastroeni - Colorado Rapids
Osvaldo Alonso - Seattle Sounders
Dane Richards - New York Red Bulls

FORWARDS
Maicon Santos - FC Dallas
Dwayne De Rosario - DC United
Brian Ching - Houston Dynamo

MANAGER
Aron Winter - Toronto FC

HONORABLE MENTION
Justin Braun - Chivas USA
Dilly Duka - Columbus Crew
Richard Eckersley - Toronto FC
Benny Feilhaber - New England Revolution
Kevin Hartman - FC Dallas
Sebastien Le Toux - Philadelphia Union
Joel Lindpere - New York Red Bulls
Brandon McDonald - DC United
Brian Mullin - Colorado Rapids
Andy Najar - Seattle Sounders
A.J. Soares - New England Revolution
Joe Willis - DC United
Daniel Woolard - DC United




MLS Suspends SKC Assistant Coach Three Games For Comments To Officials

Major League Soccer's Disciplinary Committee Tuesday announced Sporting Kansas City assistant coach John Pascarella has been suspended three games for comments he made to the officiating crew after the team's August 6 game versus the Seattle Sounders.

Pascarella is eligible to return for the team September 10 when they host the Houston Dynamo at Livestrong Sporting Park.

Galaxy Blank Honduras' Motagua 2-0 In CCL Group A Opener

Adam Cristman and Landon Donovan Donovan scored goals as Major League Soccer's Los Angeles Galaxy, the best team in the league this season, barely broke a sweat as they shut out Motagua of Honduras Tuesday in the opening round of Group A play at the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament at The Home Depot Center.

The Galaxy next host Alajuelnese of Costa Rica in Round 2 of the Group Phase next Thursday.

Fucito Brace Gives Sounders 4-1 Win Over Comunicaciones In CCL Group D Opener

Michael Fucito led a 10-man roster of Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders to a 4-1 victory over CSD Comunicaciones of Guatemala in the first of six games in Group D play at the 2011-12 CONCACAF Champions League tournament Tuesday at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, WA.

Fucito assisted Brad Evans on a game-tying score in the 35th minute after Comunicactiones went up 1-0 in the second minute after Brayan Ordonez assisted Jairo Arreola.

The Sounders' next Group D game will be in Monterrey, Mexico against the Primera Division team next Tuesday.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Zaher Named Final USL PRO Player Of The Week For 2011 Season

Charleston Battery midfielder Mike Zaher, who scored a pair of goals in a 4-3 victory last Friday against the Charlotte Eagles to claim the last playoff spot from the American Division, was named the final USL PRO Player of the Week for the 2011 season.

Here are the other players who were selected for the league's final Team of the Week:

GOALKEEPER
Oscar Dautt - Los Angeles Blues

DEFENDERS
Troy Roberts - Rochester Rhinos
Rob Valentino - Orlando City Soccer Club
William Yomby - Richmond Kickers
Rich Costanzo - Rochester Rhinos

MIDFIELDERS
Jamie Watson - Orlando City Soccer Club
Ryan Heins - Richmond Kickers

FORWARDS
Jose Angulo - Harrisburg City Islanders
Jhonny Arteaga - FC New York
Andri Budnyy - Wilmington Hammerheads

HONORABLE MENTION
Dane Kelly - Charleston Battery
Jorge Herrera - Charlotte Eagles
Sallieu Bundu - Charlotte Eagles
Eric Kissinger - Dayton Dutch Lions
Tadeu Terra - FC New York
Erik Ustruck - Orlando City Soccer Club
Hunter Gilstrap - Pittsburgh Riverhounds
Ryan Jones - Richmond Kickers
Ronnie Pascale - Richmond Kickers
Neal Kitson - Rochester Rhinos
J.C. Banks - Rochester Rhinos
Chris Banks - Wilmington Hammerheads

Real Salt Lake Signs Wagner

Former Vancouver Whitecaps defender/midfielder Blake Wagner, released last month by the worst team in Major League Soccer this season, signed a contract Tuesday with Real Salt Lake.

Wagner played his first four full seasons in MLS with FC Dallas.

FCNY's Arteaga, Terra Pick Up USL PRO Individual Awards For 2011 Season

Despite the franchise not qualifying for the 2011 USL PRO Playoffs, which begin in earnest Friday, expansion team FC New York picked up two of the league's three individual regular season statistical championships, announced Tuesday.

Forward Jhonny Arteaga won the Scoring and Goal Scoring Champion titles with 27 points over 21 games, including 13 goals.

Midfielder Tadeu Terra won the Assist Champion crown with eight assists in 20 regular season games.

Orlando City Soccer Club goalkeeper Miguel Gallardo was named the Goals Against Average Champion, tallying a 0.681 average in 12 games.

Gallardo gave up 15 goals during the season, led the league in shutouts with 11 and tied for the league lead in wins with 12.

NASL's Stars Loan Stewart To MLS' FC Dallas

The NSC Minnesota Stars of the North American Soccer League announced Tuesday they loaned defender Jack Stewart to Major League Soccer's FC Dallas for the rest of the MLS season.

He was originally signed by MLS' Chicago Fire, where had two goals in 16 appearances from 2004 and 2005, before being traded to Real Salt Lake in 2006, where he had 25 goals in a season-and-a-half there.

With the Stars, Stewart has started all 15 games he has played in.

NASL Announces New Policy Regarding Player Concussion

Based on a similar move by Major League Soccer, the North American Soccer League announced Tuesday they now have a policy, effective immediately, regarding any player who suffers from a concussion, either during a pratice or a regular season game.

Previously, each NASL franchises' have their own policies on the matter; the new policy gives off uniformity.

All players will now have to undergo a baseline neuropsychological test.

During a game, if any player is suspected of sustaining a concussion, that player will be removed from the field of play and be immediately evaulated by team personnel.

Should that player be diagnosed with a concussion, the player will be removed from the field and is out for the rest of the game.

For a player to be allowed to return to playing, the player will undergo post-concussion tests and must score at or above the normal range from his baseline test before being cleared by the team's doctor.

Nominees Named For MLS' Week 22 Save Of The Week Award

Voting has opened for fans to select the 22nd winner of Major League Soccer's Save of the Week contest for the 2011 season, which honors the goalkeeper who makes the most outstanding save.

Fans can go to http://www.mlssoccer.com/ to view the nominees and cast their vote before 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Thursday.

The nominees for Week 22 are Milos Kocic (Toronto FC), Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Kevin Hartman (FC Dallas) and Tally Hall (Houston Dynamo).

USMNT Forward Johnson Signs With MLS; Team To Be Chosen Thursday

Major League Soccer announced Tuesday US Men's National Team forward Eddie Johnson signed a contract to return to the league for the first time in three seasons and his rights will be awarded in an allocation lottery Thursday.

Johnson, who signed to play with Fulham of the English Premier League in January 2008 and was loaned out to Cardiff (England's Coca Cola Championship), Aris (Greek Super League) and Preston North End (EPL) during his career, began in MLS in 2001 with FC Dallas, who selected him in the league's SuperDraft, where he scored 24 goals over 84 regular season games from 2001 to 2006.

He was then traded to the Kansas City Wizards, now Sporting Kansas City, in 2006 and scored 17 goals in 43 games over a season and a half of play before heading to Europe.

Chivas USA is the top team in the MLS allocation list, but they have passed on previous USMNT members returning to MLS in Benny Feilhaber and Freddy Adu.

MLS Modifies DP Rules To Entice Younger International Stars To Join League

Major League Soccer announced changesTuesday to the rules for teams to sign and pay players given the Designated Player tag on their roster to potentially woo younger foreign players to the league, beginning next season.

Currently, each MLS franchise can have two such players on their roster and can get a third, if they pay the league $500,000 for the privilege.

Each team has agreed to have $335,000 of their salary count against their salary cap, currently at $2.675 million, with the rest of the league picking up the difference, no matter the age of the player.

In 2012, teams that sign players between the ages of 18 and 20 will only have to count the first $150,000 of their salary against the team's cap, and the first $200,000, if they are 21 to 23 years old.

Older players will still count the same as they do now.

Brace By FCNY's Arteaga Gives Red Bulls First Win In MLS Reserve League

Jhonny Arteaga, who just completed the 2011 USL PRO season with FC New York, appeared as a guest player for the New York Red Bulls and, with assists from John Rooney in the 48th minute and Juan Aguedelo in in the 54th minute, led them to a 2-1 come-from-behind victory over the Philadelphia Union for their first win in Major League Soccer Reserve League play at Monclair University in Montclair, NJ.

Roger Torres gave Philadelphia the opening lead on an unassisted 18th minute goal.

The Red Bulls (1-3-0, four points) are tied for fourth place in the league's East Division with the Union (1-4-1).

Both teams will take part in a doubleheader Sunday at Crew Stadium in Columbus, OH -- the Red Bulls against the New England Revolution, Philadelphia against the host team.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Marta Wins WPS Golden Boot...AGAIN!!!!

For as long as Women's Professional Soccer has been in existence, Marta, first with the Los Angeles Sol, then with FC Gold Pride, has won the league's PUMA Golden Boot Award as their top goal scorer.

So, why should 2011 be any different for her with the Western New York Flash?

The Brazilian, also the current five-time FIFA Women's World Player of the Year, a two-time league Michelle Akers Most Valuable Player Award winner and a two-time league All-Star, scored 10 goals in 14 regular season games, including five in the expansion Flash's last three games en route to the team winning the league's regular season championship and will host the league's championship game August 27 at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

USL PRO Announces Playoff Schedule

USL PRO announced their schedule Monday for the league's first postseason tournament.

AUGUST 19
American Division - #3 Richmond Kickers @ #2 Wilmington Hammerheads - Legion Stadium
National Division - #3 Los Angeles Blues @ #2 Harrisburg City Islanders - Skyline Sports Complex
National Division - #4 Pittsburgh Riverhounds @ #1 Rochester Rhinos - Sahlen's Stadium

AUGUST 20
American Division - #4 Charleston Battery @ #1 Orlando City Soccer Club - Florida Citrus Bowl

This weekend's semifinal winners will compete for the division championships August 26 through 28 at the home of the highest-seeded winner with those winners moving on to the 2011 USL PRO Championship September 3, also at the highest-seeded winner's home.

Sebrango, Burse Names NASL's Best Of The Week

The North American Soccer League announced Monday Montreal Impact forward Eduardo Sebrango and Puerto Rico Islanders goalkeeper Ray Burse were named the league's Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week, respectively.

Sebrango, in games last week against FC Tampa Bay and the Atlanta Silverbacks, had a combined two goals and an assist on four shots.

Burse led the Islanders to shutout victories against the Silverbacks, the worst team in the league this season, and the Carolina RailHawks, the league's best team.

Earthquakes Loaned Forward Zura From Ecuador

Ecuadorian forward Edmundo Zura, who plays for his country's national team as well as professionally for El Nacional, has been loaned for the rest of the 2011 Major League Soccer season to the San Jose Earthquakes, San Jose officials announced Monday.

He has scored one goal in 11 national team appearances and 10 goals in 30 appearances since 2005 for El Nacional.

Sounders Loan Montano To Impact

Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders announced Monday they have loaned midfielder Miguel Montano to the Montreal Impact, currently playing in the North American Soccer League but joining MLS for the 2012 season, for the rest of the 2011 season.

After making six appearances last season for Seattle in 2010, Montano has started two MLS regular season games and a game in the 2011 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournament.

Pontius Becomes Third United Player In As Many Weeks To Be Named MLS POTW

DC United's Chris Pontius, who scored two goals in a 4-0 victory over the Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday, was the third player from that team to be named Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 22 of the 2011 season Monday.

Dwayne De Rosario won the award for Weeks 20 and 21.

Pontius now has a career-high seven goals this season and has won his second career POTW honor.

Galaxy Adds Ireland's Keane As Designated Player; Over The Limit At Four

Major League Soccer's best team, the Western Conference and possible Supporters Shield-winning Los Angeles Galaxy, got even better Monday with the announcement the team signed Irish forward and national team captain Robbie Keane to a reported two-year, $5.7 million deal to become a Designated Player.

Unfortunately, MLS teams are only allowed three such players on a roster, so the word is former New York Red Bulls forward Juan Pablo Angel could be on the trading block in order to make room for Keane.

Keane has scored 51 goals in 108 games for Ireland's national team and he had 107 goals in 254 games with Tottenham in the English Premier League between 2002 and 2008.

Nominees Announced For Week 22 MLS Goal Of The Week Voting

Major League Soccer Monday announced the five nominees for the AT&T Goal of the Week award for Week 22 of the 2011 season.

Fans can view the scoring plays of the nominees by visiting www.mlssoccer.com/att-goal-week and can vote for their choice either online or via their cell phone by texting to 22442 and typing in the code for their particular favorite. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time Thursday with the winner to be announced Friday.

The nominees are (with codes next to them) Benny Feilhaber of the New England Revolution (G1), Thierry Henry of the New York Red Bulls (G2), Dominic Oduro of the New York Red Bulls (G3), Adam Moffat of the Houston Dynamo (G4) and Joel Lindpere of the New York Red Bulls (G5).

Flash Ends Season As Regular Season WPS Champions With 2-0 Beatdown Of Beat

For the first time, the expansion Western New York Flash are the 2011 regular season champions of Women's Professional Soccer after downing the league's worst team for the third season running, the Atlanta Beat, 4-0 Sunday at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

Caroline Seger put the Flash on the board in the 37th minute as Alex Morgan assisted Caroline Seger on the eventual halftime lead and Marta was assisted by Christine Sinclair in the 75th minute.

The Flash end the regular season 13-2-3 with 42 points and will host the 2011 WPS Championship presented by Citi August 27 from Rochester.

The Beat finished the season 1-13-4 with seven points.

De Vanna Double Leads magicJack To Win Over Independence

Lisa De Vanna was assisted by Ella Masur in the 10th and 63rd minute as host magicJack FC edged the Philadelphia Independence 2-1 during the final regular season weekend of the 2011 Women's Professional Soccer schedule Sunday at Florida Atlantic University Field in Boca Raton, FL.

Any Rodriguez had Philadelphia's lone goal in the 79th minute off a Laura del Rio assist.

magicJack, despite earning a penalty in the standings race due to the inability of the team's owner to follow established league rules, finished the 2011 season 9-7-2 with 28 points and in third place in the standings.

magicJack will host the Boston Breakers in the First Round of the WPS Playoffs Wednesday.

The winner of the game climbs the ladder to face the Independence (11-4-3, 36, second place in the league) in the WPS Super Semi this Saturday at PPL Park.

That winner gets the chance to face the best team in the league, the Western New York Flash, the WPS regular season champion, August 27 at Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, NY.

Cheney Powers Breakers To 2-0 Win Over Sky Blue, Earns Last Playoff Berth

Lauren Cheney was assisted by Keelin Winters seconds after the game commenced and Meghan Klingenberg in the 18th minute as the Boston Breakers won the last Women's Professional Soccer playoff berth for the 2011 season with a 2-0 win over Sky Blue FC.

The Breakers and Sky Blue both finished the 2011 regular season with identical records of 5-9-4 with 19 points, but Boston won the tiebreaker by earning a better head-to-head record. Boston will open the playoffs at magicJack FC Wednesday at Florida Atlantic University's Soccer Field in Boca Raton, FL.

Impact Shuts Out Silverbacks At Saputo

Mircea Ilcu (third minute), Hassoun Camara (eighth minute), Sinisa Ubiparipovic (35th minute) and Migane Diouf (80th minute) scored goals as the host Montreal Impact shut out the Atlanta Silverbacks 4-0 Sunday in a battle of the two worst teams in the North American Soccer League at Saputo Stadium.

The Impact, at 4-10-7 with 19 points, is seventh in the eight-team league and will host the NSC Minnesota Stars Wednesday.

Atlanta, 3-15-3 with 12 points and in last place, travels to FC Edmonton next Sunday.

Santamaria Goal Gives Strikers Draw With FC Edmonton

Mike Palacio assisted on David Santamaria's 79th minute equalizing goal as the Fort Lauderdale Strikers played FC Edmonton to a 1-1 draw in North American Soccer League play at Foote Field in Edmonton Sunday.

Edmonton's lead came in the 29th minute when Chris Lemire assisted Paul Hamilton on a goal.

The Strikers are 6-5-10 with 28 points and are tied with the NSC Minnesota Stars (7-6-7) for fourth place in the standings. Fort Lauderdale travels to the first-place Carolina RailHawks Saturday.

FC Edmonton is in sixth place in the standings at 7-9-5 with 26 points and hosts the last-place Atlanta Silverbacks next Sunday.

Dynamo Holds Off Timbers Challenge

Adam Moffat's 17th minute unassisted goal and a Brian Ching score off assists from Colin Clark and Brad Davis in the 27th minute survived a late challenge in the 56th minute when Darlington Nagbe and Sal Zizzo assisted Jack Jewsbury on his team's lone goal as the host Houston Dynamo edged the Portland Timbers 2-1 Sunday in Major League Soccer play from Robertson Stadium in Houston.

The Dynamo, 7-7-10 with 31 points, is now tied for third place in the Eastern Conference with the New York Red Bulls (6-6-13) and will host Real Salt Lake Saturday.

Portland, alone in seventh place in the Western Conference at 7-11-5 with 26 points, will travel to Sporting Kansas City's Livestrong Sporting Park Wednesday, then will host the worst team in the conference and MLS, the Vancouver Whitecaps, Saturday at JELD-WEN Field.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Red Bulls, Fire Play To...What Else, A Draw!

Joel Lindpere's goal in the 64th minute handed the New York Red Bulls' their 13th Major League Soccer draw of the season as they played the Chicago Fire to a 2-2 tie at Red Bull Arena Saturday in Harrison, NJ.

Thierry Henry scored for the Red Bulls in the ninth minute, but Chicago would later take the lead, thanks to goals by Dominic Oduro and Sebastiean Grazzini, before Lindpere's strike.

The Red Bulls are in third place in the Eastern Conference standings at 6-6-13 with 31 points. New York will travel to the New England Revolution next Saturday.

Chicago is in last place in the Eastern Conference at 2-7-14 with 20 points and will host DC United Thursday.

Crew Holds Top Spot In Eastern Conference With 3-1 Win Over Revolution

Julius James and Emilio Renteria scored goals for the Columbus Crew and got an own goal from the New England Revolution's Kevin Alston as the Eastern Conference leaders edged the near-cellar-dwellers 3-1 Saturday in Major League Soccer play at Crew Stadium.

Benny Feilhaber of the US Men's National team had New England's lone goal as the Revolution lost for the seventh time in 13 road games this season.

Columbus is 10-7-7 with 37 points and hosts the Philadelphia Union, second place in the conference, next Saturday.

New England is 4-11-9 with 21 points, is in eighth place in the conference, and hosts the Houston Dynamo this Wednesday.

United Ices Whitecaps At RFK Stadium

Chris Pontius had two scores, Andy Najar and Stephen King added a goal each, and back-to-back Player of the Week Dwayne De Rosario assisted on three of the four goals as host DC United routed the Vancouver Whitecaps 4-0 in Major League Soccer play at RFK Stadium Saturday.

The Whitecaps, in last place in the Western Conference standings and with the league's worst record at 3-12-9 with 18 points, are winless in their last 13 road games and have lost nine of those games. Vancouver is at the Portland Timbers next Saturday.

DC United, at 7-6-9 with 30 points, is tied for fourth place in the Eastern Conference with Sporting Kansas City (7-7-9), who they face at Livestrong Sporting Park next Sunday after facing the Chicago Fire on the road this Thursday.