Tag: atlanta united

MLS Cup Boots GHSA, Acting AG Football and MASL Kicks Off

113018I have a few things to talk about in today’s blog that I’m going to mash together for you today.  Let’s start off with the ridiculous situation with the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) state championships.  Last year the championship games for each classification was supposed to be played in the new Mercedes Benz Dome in Atlanta; however, a freak snowstorm created some unsafe travel conditions so some of the games were postponed and rescheduled at one of the participating schools in each of the finals.  This created a contingency plan devised before the season to avoid the same situation.  It isn’t snow that is the problem this year, it is the Atlanta United Football (soccer) team.  Their success has created a mess with the GHSA State Finals.  Atlanta’s Major League Soccer club eliminated their semifinal opponent last night and will now host the MLS Cup on December 8th in the dome.  This forced the “contingency plan” which now has the state finals being moved to December 11th & 12th.  If you look on your calendar that is Tuesday and Wednesday.  Dumb, dumb, dumb plan.  I have never been an advocate of playing the state championship games in the dome.  The smarter contingency plan should have been to play the games in alternate sites such as the stadiums at Georgia State, Georgia Tech and Mercer.  This is one time in Georgia that football has been booted because of a soccer game.

Yesterday I was in the same room with our acting Attorney General, Matt Whitaker.  Whitaker, who played for the Iowa Hawkeyes’ football team in the early 1990s, got a little ribbing about this years’ team.  Whitaker graduated from Ankeny High School where he was pretty good.  He was inducted into the Iowa High School Football Hall of Fame.  At the University of Iowa, he played football for Hayden Fry.  In his career, Whitaker had 21 catches for 203 yards and two touchdowns as tight end for the Hawkeyes and played in the 1991 Rose Bowl.  One of his touchdowns came on a fake field goal against Illinois in 1990.

The Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) opens their 2018-2019 season tonight.  The league will field 17 teams.  The Mississauga Metro Stars and Orlando SeaWolves are the league’s newest teams.  The Baltimore Blast have won the last three titles.  The MASL represents the highest level of professional arena soccer in the world with teams in the United States, Canada and Mexico.  The SeaWolves open their inaugural season tonight at home against the St. Louis Ambush while the Ontario Fury will host the Turlock Express.   Last season’s top players were Ian Bennett (Milwaukee) with 50 goals, Kraig Chiles (San Diego) had 38 goals and Christian Gutierrez (El Paso) with 36.

Before I leave this blog post, I will tell you that I am tuning into the GHSA Class 5A semifinal playoff game between Warner Robins and Rome.  The two teams met in the 2017 State Final.  Yeah, I’d like to forget that game.  Rome overwhelmed Warner Robins 38-0 in that game.   Most folks say that Rome isn’t as good as last year’s team but the Wolves have only allowed their opponents more than 14 points in only two games this season and they are also riding a 40-game winning streak.  I’d say that’s pretty good.  Warner Robins hasn’t been too bad this season but tonight will be the first time I’m on the edge of my seat.  I’m hoping for a better result than last season’s game.

 

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Obscure Sports Report

atlantaunited

Atlanta’s Major League Soccer (MLS) expansion team won their first game on Sunday when they blasted Minnesota 6-1 in a snow flurry in front of over 35,000 fans.  Atlanta United’s Josef Martinez scored a rare hat-trick while Miguel Almiron scored twice and Jacob Peterson scored once.  Atlanta dropped a 2-1 home opener to the New York Red Bulls a week ago in front of 55,000 fans.

The New England Black Wolves (5-6) became the first team in the Eastern Division to defeat the Georgia Swarm (7-3) on Sunday in the National Lacrosse League (NLL).   Shawn Evans and Kyle Buchanan each had three goals and four assists in a 13-8 win.  It was the fourth hat trick of the season for Evans.

Tony Spredeman of the United States is at the top of the World Foosball Player rankings.   He is first in Open Combined and Open Singles rankings.  He is also second in Open Doubles.   Spredeman is from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has won several World Championships.

The Baltimore Blast are looking at elimination from the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) playoffs.  They were upset by the Harrisburg Heat 5-4 on Saturday in Baltimore.  The Milwaukee Wave edged the Kansas City Comets 3-2 when Marcio Leite scored the series winner 2:26 into overtime of the mini-game to win their series 2 games to 1 and advance to the MASL semifinals.   Sonora blasted Baja 17-3 in game two on Saturday to complete their sweep of the Southwest Division final.  In the Pacific Division, the San Diego Sockers beat Ontario 9-4 in the first game of their series, Ontario evened the series with an 8-4 win to force a mini-game.  The Sockers scored nine seconds into the tie-breaker and held on to advance to the league semifinals.

The Boston Pride finished the regular season in the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) with the best record at 16-1.  New York finished second at 8-7-3, Buffalo Beauts third (6-10-1) and the Connecticut Whale (5-12-1).  All four teams qualify for the Isobel Cup Playoffs which begins on Thursday and Friday.   Winners will advance to the final on Sunday, March 19th.

The DMV Warriors, based out of Woodlawn, Maryland, leads the American Basketball Association (ABA) power rankings with a record of 18-0.   The Jacksonville Giants (20-2), Orlando Waves (17-2), Austin Bats (15-1) and Mobile Bay Tornados (14-1) finish out the top five.   The league was founded in 1999 as a nationwide semi-pro basketball league.  The Jacksonville Giants are the defending league champions.

The Wichita Falls Nighthawks defeated the Cedar Rapids Titans this weekend, 42-23, to remain undefeated in the Indoor Football League (IFL).  Quarterback Charles McCullum finished the game completing 20 of 30 passes for 186 yards and two touchdowns.  The Nighthawks will have the week off before they face the six-time defending United Bowl Champions, Sioux Falls Storm.

In the second week of playoffs in the Professional Rapid Online (PRO) Chess League, the stakes were huge as teams battled to advance to the quarterfinals.  Magnus Carlsen (Norway), Wesley So (St. Louis) and Fabiano Caruana (Montreal) were all in tight battles by lesser-known opponents.  Hikaru Nakamura (Miami) had one of the worst chess days of his life, scoring 1.5/4 and losing in a do-or-die final round.   In this week’s quarterfinal round:  Norway Gnomes vs. Gorky Stormbringers, Montclair Sopranos vs. Miami Champions, Marseille Migraines vs. Stockholm Snowballs and Webster Windmills vs. St. Louis Arch Bishops.

Have a sport you’d like me to write about next week?  Leave me a comment and I will post it next Wednesday.