Pro Soccer News: THIS WEEK's San Diego Sockers Road to the U.S. Open Cup Final
2010-2011 PASL-Pro Champions, 12-time Indoor Soccer Champions, 2010 U.S. Open Cup Champions and Back-to-Back PASL Champions are our local San Diego soccer champions, the San Diego Sockers.
U.S. OPEN CUP CHAMPIONSHIP: SOCKERS vs. CINCINNATI Game Details: SOCKERS (18-2) vs. Cincinnati Kings (13-4) game is on this Saturday, March 19th, 2011 at 6:15pm
The road to U.S. Open Cup Final for the San Diego Sockers has been paved with indoor soccer victories and cheering fans. Now our local San Diego indoor soccer champions have won again the 2010-2011 PASL North American Championship and are in search of a “double” championship for the second straight year as they host the Cincinnati Kings in the finals of the U.S. Open Cup for Arena Soccer.
The Cincinnati Kings have proven to be a strong opponent for the San Diego Sockers and this should be a great match to finish the indoor soccer season and give our local Sockers' fans a great reason to come out to the Del Mar Arena one last time to celebrate and cheer for our local champions. If you haven't already discovered the magic of spending Saturday evening watching the Sockers play, this is your last chance to really enjoy great family fun and fast paced, high scoring soccer action.
This U.S. Open Cup Championship is a season-long tournament, which included teams from both the PASL-Pro and PASL-Premier divisions, saw the top two teams in the PASL-Pro advance through a 16-team bracket to reach the finals in Del Mar. San Diego beat Louisville 11-7 last year to win their first U.S. Open Cup. This is the first appearance for the Kings in the U.S. Open Cup finals.
Saturday’s season finale will also serve as an opportunity to celebrate the Sockers’ 2010-2011 PASL-Pro North American Championship, as San Diego traveled to Cincinnati last weekend to claim their second consecutive ring. The Sockers beat Mexico City and Guadalajara to win the championship.
This recent championship will be remembered for the contributions from the team’s most aged veterans and their raw rookies. 41-year-old midfielder Paul Wright had two assists in the semis and a goal and assist in the final. 36-year-old team captain Aaron Susi recorded a pair of assists in the championship game. On the other side of the age spectrum, reserve keeper Chris Toth (21) made 14 saves in the semi-final win over Mexico City for the biggest victory of his career, while forward Nick Perera (24) had a goal and assist in two playoff games.
Kraig Chiles was named the season and playoff MVP. The former San Diego State men’s soccer player Chiles capped an impressive season in the Premier Arena Soccer League as he lead the Sockers to their second consecutive championship and 12th overall title. Chiles was named the tournament’s most valuable player after scoring four goals in the championship victory over La Raza de Guadalajara on Saturday, March 12, in Cincinnati. Chiles added a goal in the Sockers’ 7-3 win over Mexico City in the semifinal game the night before. What will he do on Saturday against the Kings? Chiles, who also garnered regular season MVP honors, led the league with 38 goals. He added 12 assists for 50 points, a Sockers’ PASL-Pro record.
The Poway native, Chiles scored 21 times over his career with the Aztecs (2003-07). He was a three-time all-Pac-10 Conference selection, earning first-team honors in 2007, honorable mention accolades in 2006 and second-team recognition in 2005. In his final year on The Mesa, Chiles led the Pac-10 Conference in shots (62) and was second with 20 points on eight goals and four assists. He also led SDSU in games started (19) and shots on goal (26).
Back to this upcoming match: The Sockers are going for their second consecutive unbeaten season at the Del Mar Arena. They come into Saturday’s game with a 8-0 record at home in league action this season and a 16-0 mark all-time. In addition the Sockers are 2-0 in PASL-Pro playoff contests at home, 4-0 in U.S. Open Cup contests and 2-0 in exhibitions for a combined home record of 24-0 all-time.
Here is the scoop on the opposition: The Cincinnati Kinds are tough. The standard-bearer for the PASL-Pro’s Eastern Divison, the Kings stumbled into the playoffs when their 23 game home winning streak was snapped by Louisville on March 4th. The Kings then lost to Guadalajara 11-7 in the semifinals of the North American Championships. The Kings have a 38-10 all-time record in PASL-Pro regular season play. This is the third meeting between the Sockers and Kings, with Cincinnati winning 5-4 at the Gardens on December 18th and the Sockers returning serve at home with a 10-4 victory on January 8th at the Del Mar Arena.
STAR: Jeff Hughes, midfielder
The 2009-2010 PASL-Pro MVP and first-team all-league midfielder this year, Hughes is one of the fastest and most athletic players in the league. Hughes scored 31 goals in the regular seasons, many coming off speedy runs out of the midfield or set pieces. Hughes is also a skilled 6th attacker who is comfortable wearing the goalkeepers’ gloves.
WATCH OUT FOR: Jeff Henderson, defender
Henderson is a second-team all-PASL defender and one of the top shot blockers in the league. He had five goals and six assists in 13 games during the regular season and has been in the middle of a number of scrums with the Sockers in past games.
Former Aztec Kraig Chiles Leads Sockers to 12th PASL Championship
Now, the Kings better watch out for our local San Diego team. The Sockers are finishing a great season with an enormous amount of talented players. We should be proud of all our soccer players and their impressive statistics. For those of you fans who want the latest stats on the Sockers, here is the complete list of all goals, assists and total points earned by our players this season:
Name Games Goals Assists Total Pts.
Kraig Chiles 18 38 12 50
Paul Wright 16 12 19 31
Anthony Medina 18 18 11 29
Aaron Susi 13 14 13 27
Diego Rovira 17 20 4 24
Dan Antoniuk 17 13 8 21
Majell Aterado 16 9 9 18
Eric Wunderle 12 9 6 15
Nick Perera 8 6 9 15
Scotty Martin 16 3 12 15
Chiky Luna 11 6 8 14
Brian Farber 4 6 7 13
Ze Roberto 18 3 10 13
John Krause 11 6 3 9
Brian O'Connor 6 2 0 2
Riley Swift 14 0 2 2
Chris Toth 4 0 2 2
Josh Barton 12 1 0 1
Mike Mercurali 2 0 0 0
Dru Hoshimiya 1 0 0 0
David Beltran 1 0 0 0
Damien Quinn 1 0 0 0
TOTALS: 18 166 135 301
Name Gms W-L GA Saves GAA Sv%
Riley Swift 14 12-2 70 157 5.00 69%
Chris Toth 4 4-0 21 44 5.25 69%
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