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FC Tucson takes on Seahorses Saturday night

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Soccer notes

FC Tucson takes on Seahorses Saturday night

Az United earns a date to play LA Galaxy in Open Cup

  • FC Tucson's Eli-Galbraith Knapp (in red) challenges Southern California Seahorses' Joshua Ayers (in blue) in a match between the two teams, July 11, 2013.
    Southern California SeahorsesFC Tucson's Eli-Galbraith Knapp (in red) challenges Southern California Seahorses' Joshua Ayers (in blue) in a match between the two teams, July 11, 2013.

FC Tucson’s opponent at Kino Stadium on Saturday night will be the Southern California Seahorses. One can say that the Seahorses are a team with a mission.

No, that’s not sports writer’s cliche; they literally are missionaries.

“We use the platform of soccer to share the Gospel with both the players that come into our team, the media, our opposing team, the refs, the fans and the surrounding community,” said goalkeeper coach and former FC Tucson player Cody Suppe, speaking from a van driving in the desert near Blythe. “We use the platform we have as athletes that are looked up to. We’ve been given gifts that we want to use for God’s glory.”

“It’s no longer being a good soccer player that happens to be Christian,” he continued. “But rather being a Christian soccer player.”

“Our motto is ministry first and soccer second,” he said. “We are very serious about our soccer so it lets you know how serious we are about our ministry.”

They are serious enough about their soccer that they’ve had some success. They made the national semifinals in 2002, their second year of existence, and had two more appearances in the conference semifinals before having a bit of a dive. In 2012, they only put together three wins. Last year, their only good results were a tie with FC Tucson (FC Tucson came back in the rematch to win 5–1) and two wins against the woeful OC Blues Strikers.

The team has made a few changes. Long time coach Todd Elkins had been splitting his time between coaching the Seahorses and at Biola University. The team has now hired a full time coach, Johnny Juarez-Jackman, along with Suppe as a goalkeeper coach and another assistant. The change not only allows the staff to be more focused on training, but allows the team to be more active in recruiting players nationally.

The results have not been spectacular yet: a tie with Las Vegas Mobsters and two losses to the LA Misioneros. Still, Suppe sees a lot of good in those results.

“We played well against Las Vegas, but we kind of made some rookie mistakes and gave up a 2 – 0 lead. I think a little of that was not knowing each other,” he said. “We didn’t come prepared against Misioneros … we didn’t deal with it well and got smacked by them. [In the second game] we played a lot better and lost in the 92nd minute.”

“Two performances have been there and the results haven’t,” he said. “We are hoping to get things put together soon.”

Saturday night soccer at Kino North Stadium will be a double header. Local women’s side TSA FC will take on LA Premier at 5:30 p.m. FC Tucson’s match against the Seahorses will be at 7:30 p.m.

Odaine: #1 on Sportscenter

The bicycle kick that turned out to be the winning goal for FC Tucson in their match against BYU on Thursday went viral and was picked up by websites like Bleacher Report.

Not only that, but Odaine Sinclair's goal made Sportscenter's Top 10 feature. In fact, it made number one, beating several highlights from the College World Series.

The Galaxy will play in Peoria

Arizona United SC beat Oklahoma City Energy FC in a U.S. Open Cup match this week. It was the second win for Arizona United in the tournament, and the second where the team counted on late game heroics to get the victory.

The team’s match last week against Portland Timbers FC U23 was won with three goals in the last six minutes of the match. The OKC match was dragged into overtime after Arizona Scored a late game goal only to be answered by OKC’s Kyle Greig in the final minute. It took an overtime goal from Arizona’s Bradlee Baladez to send the team to the fourth round.

Arizona United is the first Arizona team to make the fourth round of the U.S. Open Cup. They will be playing against the Los Angeles Galaxy on June 18 in Peoria. The Galaxy has a habit of not taking Open Cup matches seriously, so we could see United last into the next round.

Other Open Cup news

The Charleston Battery played Orlando City U23 to a 2–2 draw that had to be settled on penalty kicks. After an Open Cup record 14 rounds, Orlando won 12–11.

Interestingly, with the current bracket configuration, should the U23s beat the Portland Timbers and their parent club, Orlando City SC, Colorado Rapids, the two teams would meet in the fifth round.

Orlando City U23 is a PDL team, one of two in that league still standing in the tournament. The Laredo Heat posted a victory over the Ft Lauderdale Strikers to go on to the next round. One other amateur club is still in the tournament: PSA Elite, a US Amateur Soccer Association team that plays in California’s Coast Soccer League, defeated LA Galaxy II and is scheduled to take on the Seattle Sounders in the next round.

PDL Mountain Division Standings

FC Tucson512165
BYU Cougars512118
Albuquerque Sol FC5534
Las Vegas Mobsters4467
Real Colorado Foxes3125

FC Tucson Schedule

Home matches in bold. Friendlies and non-division PDL opponents are noted.

  • Jan 28 - FC Tucson 0 - Sporting Kansas City 1 (MLS) (friendly)
  • Feb 10 - FC Tucson 0 - Houston Dynamo 2 (MLS) (friendly)
  • Feb 19 - FC Tucson 1 - CD Chivas USA 1 (MLS) (Desert Diamond Cup)
  • Feb 22 - FC Tucson 0 - Chicago Fire SC 2 (MLS) (Desert Diamond Cup)
  • Feb 26 - FC Tucson 1 - Real Salt Lake 3 (MLS) (Desert Diamond Cup)
  • May 3 - FC Tucson 0 - University of New Mexico Lobos (NCAA) 0 (friendly)
  • May 8 - BYU Cougars 3 - FC Tucson 2
  • May 10 - Las Vegas Mobsters 1 - FC Tucson 2
  • May 17 - FC Tucson 7 - OC Pataedores Blues 0 (non-division)
  • May 21 - FC Tucson 3 - FC Hasental 1 (NPSL), 7:30 pm (friendly)
  • May 24 - Real Colorado Foxes 1 - FC Tucson 3
  • May 29 - FC Tucson 2 - BYU Cougars 0
  • May 31 - vs Southern California Seahorses, 7:30 pm
  • June 6 - at Albuquerque Sol FC, 6:30 pm, St. Pius X High School
  • June 7 - at Albuquerque Sol FC, 6:30 pm, St. Pius X High School
  • June 10 - vs Temecula FC (NPSL), 7:30 (friendly)
  • June 14 - vs Las Vegas Mobsters, 7:30 pm
  • June 21 - vs Ventura County Fusion, 7:30 pm (non-division)
  • June 26 - at Southern California Seahorses, 7 pm, La Mirada High School (non-division)
  • June 28 - at OC Pataedores Blues, 5 pm, Vanguard University Stadium (non-division)
  • July 4 - vs Albuquerque Sol FC, 7:30 pm
  • July 12 - vs Real Colorado Foxes, 7:30 pm
  • July 15 - vs Arizona Sahuaros (USASA), 7:30 pm (friendly)

US Open Cup

Fourth Round

  • June 11
  • Houston Dynamo (MLS) v Laredo Heat (PDL)
  • San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) v Sacramento Republic FC (USL Pro)
  • June 14
  • Real Salt Lake (MLS) v Atlanta Silverbacks (NASL)
  • CD Chivas USA (MLS) v Carolina Railhawks (NASL)
  • New York Red Bulls (MLS) v New York Cosmos (NASL)
  • FC Dallas (MLS) v San Antonio Scorpions (NASL)
  • June 17
  • DC United (MLS) v Rochester Rhinos (USL Pro)
  • Philadelphia Union (MLS) v Harrisburg City Islanders (USL Pro)
  • Colorado Rapids (MLS) v Orlando City (USL Pro)
  • Portland Timbers (MLS) v Orlando City U23 (PDL)
  • June 18
  • Sporting Kansas City (MLS) v Minnesota United SC (NASL)
  • New England Revolution (MLS) v Richmond Kickers (USL Pro)
  • Chicago Fire SC (MLS) v Pittsburgh Riverhounds (USL Pro)
  • Seattle Sounders FC (MLS) v PSA Elite (USASA)
  • Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) v Arizona United SC (USL Pro)

Third Round

  • May 28
  • Rochester Rhinos (USL Pro) 2 - Reading United AC (PDL) 1 aet
  • New York Cosmos (NASL) 2 - Brooklyn Italians (NPSL) 0
  • Richmond Kickers (USL Pro) 2 - Greek American AA (USASA) 1
  • Baltimore Bohemians (PDL) 2 - Harrisburg City Islanders (USL Pro) 4
  • Pittsburgh Riverhounds (USL Pro) 3 - RWB Adria (USASA) 2 aet
  • Indy Eleven (NASL) 5 - Dayton Dutch Lions (USL Pro) 2
  • Carolina RailHawks (NASL) 2 - Charlotte Eagles (USL Pro) 0
  • Chattanooga FC (NPSL) 0 - Atlanta Silverbacks (NASL) 5
  • Charleston Battery (USL Pro) 2 - Orlando City U-23 (PDL) 2 aet, Orlando wins on PKs
  • Orlando City SC (USL Pro) 4 - Tampa Bay Rowdies (NASL) 2
  • Fort Lauderdale Strikers (NASL) 2 - Laredo Heat (PDL) 3
  • San Antonio Scorpions (NASL) 4 - NTX Rayados (USASA) 2
  • Des Moines Menace (PDL) 0 - Minnesota United FC (NASL) 1
  • Arizona United SC (USL Pro) 2 - Oklahoma City Energy FC (USL Pro) 1 aet
  • Sacramento Republic FC (USL Pro) 6 - Fresno Fuego (PDL) 0
  • LA Galaxy II (USL Pro) 0 - PSA Elite (USASA) 0 aet, PSA wins on PKs

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