Friday Flashback:  Savannah Rug Ratz

Nope.  I’m not talking about the old cartoon from the 90s about mischievous babies.  These Rug Ratz played during the summers of 1997 and 1998 in the short-lived Eastern Indoor Soccer League (EISL).   The EISL was an attempt to become a regional developmental league for other national indoor leagues during their existence.   The Rug Ratz were one of the original EISL franchises that began play in the Savannah Civic Center.  

In their first season, the Rug Ratz finished sixth place in the seven-team league with a record of 7-17.   Their average attendance was also sixth in the league.  The Rug Ratz didn’t fare much better in their second season finishing in last place at 6-22.  The home opener should have provided to be an omen of things to come as their turf was not ready for play after being cleaned earlier in the day.  Excessive wet spots in the turf  forced cancellation of their game against the Lafayette SwampCats.  

In December 1998, the EISL announced it was ceasing operations.  If the league had continued the Rug Ratz would have continued to play.

Some of the Rug Ratz best players were Forward Shawn Beyer who was named to the 1998 All-League Second Team.  Defenders Dan McManemy, Sean Scott and Midfielder Colin Buck were also key players in the short history of the Rug Ratz.

I personally attended one game when visiting Savannah during the summer.  It was a very exciting game and entertaining although there weren’t many people there to watch it.  Obviously there is a lot of other things to do in the coastal city during the summer months.  That could have been why the team was plagued with low attendance figures.

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