Baltimore Returns To Fourth Straight Final

cupThere was a time when the Baltimore Blast could not seem to break through in the early days of their franchise.  Each time they faced the New York Arrows they would come up short but the times have changed and now the Blast are the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) dynasty.


In the Eastern Conference final, the Blast jumped out to a commanding 7-3 lead at halftime as Tony Donatelli, Daniel Peruzzi and Adriano Dos Santos scored goals in the second period against the Milwaukee Wave.  The Wave stormed back in the third period to close within 7-6.  Baltimore’s Vini Dantas took back the momentum as he jumped in front of a Wave clearance attempt and headed a ball past a surprised Josh Lemos into an open goal a minute into the fourth quarter.  The Blast scored twice more to seal the win and their fourth trip to the championship game.


The Monterrey Flash broke open a 3-3 game in the Western Conference final against the San Diego Sockers in front of a home crowd of 6,086 fans with goals from Edgar González and Omar Santillan to put the Flash up 5-3.  The Sockers outshot Monterrey 8-3 in the fourth period but the Flash weathered the storm and capitalized on some crucial defensive breakdowns to wrap up the win.

The Ron Newman Cup final will be played in Monterrey on March 25th in a rematch of the 2015 final won by the Flash in a thrilling two games to one series.  The Flash won the series deciding game 4-3 in overtime.  The 2018 final will be a one-game final.

Monterrey posted a league-leading 20-2 record in the regular season.  They have outscored their playoff opponents 23-16.  The Flash sat out the last two seasons before re-entering the league this season.

Baltimore is seeking their third straight championship.  The Blast defeated Sonora Soles in the last two finals winning both deciding games in overtime.   Baltimore finished the regular season 17-5.  All five losses have been on the road.





MASL Division Champs Advance

San Diego Sockers defeat Tacoma to advance to MASL semifinals

The Ron Newman Cup kicked off the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) postseason with four division titles on the line.  Here is how they fared:

Eastern Division:  Baltimore defeated Syracuse 2 games to 0.

The two-time defending champs didn’t exactly breeze through their divisional series with Syracuse.  The Blast edged the Silver Knights 7-6 and 5-4 to sweep the series.  Baltimore took a commanding 5-1 lead into the final quarter of the opener of the series and held off the Silver Knights as they were outscored 5-2 in the final quarter.  Baltimore built yet another lead in game two with a 4-1 lead in the third but Syracuse stormed back to make it 4-3 early in the fourth.  Baltimore’s Daniel Peruzzi scored with less than four minutes left to give the Blast an insurance goal which stood up in the end after another Syracuse goal with seconds left.

Central Division:  Milwaukee defeated Cedar Rapids 2 games to 0.

Max Ferdinand scored the game winning and series winning goal with 10:24 left in the fourth quarter then the Milwaukee Wave held on 9-8 to advance to the semifinals.  Ian Bennett scored Milwaukee’s game winner 44 seconds into overtime for an 8-7 win.

Southwest Division:  Monterrey defeated Sonora 2 games to 0.

Brayan Aguilar had a hat-trick for the Monterrey Flash in game two to clinch the series 9-5 after winning the series opener 8-7.   The teams were tied 5-5 in the third quarter of game one when until Carlos Farias scored back-to-back goals to take a 7-5 lead.  Monterrey held onto the lead to take the opener on Sonora’s home turf.  Franck Tayou had a hat trick for Sonora.

Pacific Division:  San Diego defeated Tacoma 2 games to 1.

The San Diego-Tacoma series was the only division final that went to a tie-breaker game.  Tacoma opened the series with a 5-2 win at Tacoma.  The Sockers rallied to win game two at home by routing the Stars 9-3 to force a mini-game.  The Sockers stormed out to a 5-0 lead in the first five minutes to cruise to the series-clinching win.  Five different players scored for San Diego.

The division winners will now advance to play in a one-game semifinal match.  The Baltimore Blast will play the Milwaukee Wave in one semifinal game and the Monterrey Flash will face the San Diego Sockers in the other semifinal.  The Blast edged the Wave in last year’s semifinal game while the Sockers lost to Sonora

Baltimore Blast Rallies To Win MASL Title


Trailing 6-3 in the third quarter of Game Two of the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) championship and already trailing the series 1-0 playing on Soles de Sonora’s home turf, the Blast made an amazing comeback when Adriano Dos Santos tied the game with 11 seconds left.  Juan Pereira scored the game-winning goal in overtime, 9-8, to tie the series.

The teams then played the series-deciding 15-minute mini-game where Vini Dantas clinched the winner in front of over 8,000 fans at El Centro de Usos Multiples in Mexico.

Goalkeeper William Vanzela was tough for the Blast in both games and made a huge save in the mini-game on a shot from Sole de Sonora’s Gustavo Rosales with 1:08 left.

With their second consecutive MASL title, the Blast have now won nine championships in franchise history.  After losing to Harrisburg at home in the first game of the playoffs, they went to Harrisburg and rallied from a 3-0 deficit in Game Two before winning in a mini-game.  Against the Milwaukee Wave in the Eastern Conference final, the Blast also won in a mini-game to advance to the Ron Newman Cup final.

Baltimore Blast Championships:

  • 1984:  Defeated St. Louis Steamers, 4 games to 1.
  • 2003: Defeated Milwaukee Wave 2 games to 1
  • 2004: Defeated Milwaukee Wave 3 games to 0
  • 2006: Defeated St. Louis Steamers 2 games to 1
  • 2008: Defeated Monterrey La Raza 14-11 (One-game final)
  • 2009: Defeated Rockford Rampage 13-10  (One-game final)
  • 2013: Defeated Missouri Comets, 2 games to 0
  • 2016: Defeated Soles de Sonora, 2 games to 0
  • 2017: Defeated Soles de Sonora, 2 games to 1