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Impact Defeat Calgary in Season Finale
MONTREAL, August 31, 2003
The Montreal Impact put an end to a three-game dry spell offensively and was crowned top team in Canada, Sunday, following a 2-0 victory against Calgary. With the win, coach Bob Lilleys squad won the Voyageurs Cup, awarded to the top Canadian team in the A-League, for the second year in a row. More...
Calgary Slips In Front Of International Audience
Toronto, August 29th, 2003
With the world watching on Fox Sports World, Calgary failed to gain that elusive 5th win that would mark an improvement on last year's tally.
A slip by Calgary keeper, Dave Wiebanga, in the 15th minute allowed Toronto's Sabastian Barclay to walk the ball into the Calgary net. Three minutes later, Wiebenga was replaced in goal by Eric Kenas.
Barclay should have had another in the 45th minute when Jonathan Westmaas put a short cross in from the left side that found Barclay all alone in box, but his quick shot from 7 yards was wide right. Barclay pulled his shirt over his head in shame.
Toronto doubled their lead in the 62nd minute when Mauricio Vincello bent a wicked 25 yard blast that went in off of the right post.
Calgary made it close just three minutes later, when Shawn Wimble cracked a 30 yard free kick that caught Toronto keeper, Theo Zagar, slow footed.
That was as close as Calgary would get, with the Toronto defence constantly blocking Calgary's attempts at goal. Calgary was outshot 14-2 on the night.
Calgary's final match of the season is on Sunday in Montreal.
Sounders Defeat Calgary In Home Finale
By Jason Kmet - August 14th, 2003
Calgary's entry in the A-League played its final home match this season on Thursday night. It was a familiar script for Calgary's long-suffering fans. The Calgary lads played well against the Seattle Sounders. However, Seattle was able to convert one of their only chances of the match while Calgary could not do the same resulting in a 1-0 Seattle victory. More...
Home Finale Heroics Thwarted By Seattle
August 14th, 2003 - A Seattle Perspective
Andrew Gregor scored on a set play and the Seattle Sounders defeated Team Calgary 1-0 in A-League action Thursday at Foothills Park in Calgary. The Sounders, with 47-points, can take another step toward clinching one of the two Pacific Division playoff spots when they host Indiana Sunday.
Seattle had beaten Team Calgary by a combined 12-0 in their last two meetings at Seahawks Stadium, but in two previous matches in Calgary the Sounders had a win and a draw from just two goals.
After a scoreless first half Seattle finally broke the deadlock on Gregor's free kick in the 65th minute. Sounders midfielder Alex Bengard was fouled hard five yards outside the penalty box. He stayed on the turf for a few minutes then hobbled off to the sideline. When play resumed Gregor lined the direct free kick off his left foot from 23 yards out and just inside the left post past Team Calgary goalkeeper David Wiebenga. The goal was Gregor's sixth of the season.
Engines stall on club's goal
By CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN - August 10th, 2003
The drive for five stalled again for Team Calgary.
Desperately seeking its fifth win of the A-League campaign, the team formerly known as the Calgary Storm lost 2-1 yesterday to the Milwaukee Wave United at Foothills Athletic Park.
With the loss, Calgary falls to 4-18-3 with three games left in the season.
Milwaukee's Nick Walls tallied both goals for the victors, netting the winner at the 71-minute mark. "For the last six to seven games I've moved to a winger position and I just use my speed and one-on-one ability to just find gaps. We've got guys in the middle who can find me," said Walls, a 22-year-old A-League rookie from Milwaukee.
Walls opened the scoring 14 minutes in with a low shot from the right side that bounced in off the post.
Calgary was sluggish early and the goal followed a stretch of intense pressure from Milwaukee.
Calgary, which gained momentum as the contest wore on, tied it four minutes later when Nik Reyes put his head on a beautiful cross from speedy Sean Fraser. The header beat United keeper Jeff Richey on the short side.
"(Conrad) Chala faked like he was going up to get it and I saw the ball at the last minute and gave it a little re-direct," said Reyes, 22.
While he was happy with the effort, Reyes would much rather have another win under the team's belt. "We keep losing every game and it's not fun at all," said Reyes, who had a chance late in the game to tie it but Richey made a spectacular save. Calgary could have tied it in the final minute of injury time when C.J. Pesnecker unloaded from just outside the box but, again, Richey made a diving save to his left to knock the ball away.
Team Calgary won four matches in 2002 and has five wins as its goal for this season, a campaign marred by former owner Michael Vandale leaving the side at the end of June.
Calgary's final home game of the season takes place Thursday at Foothills Park against the Seattle Sounders, before it closes the schedule with two road games.
Team Calgary Unable to Turn Tide Against Wave
Murray Rauw - Calgary Herald - Sunday, August 10, 2003
A-League squad suffers another loss.
There it was; another one like so many of the other ones.
Late Goals Put Vancouver Over Calgary
By Jason Kmet - August 4th, 2003
A pleasant holiday Monday afternoon at Foothills Park was spoiled for Calgary fans as the Vancouver Whitecaps defeated Team Calgary 2-1.
The locals had a good opportunity in the 11th minute, when Jordan Gillespie crossed the ball from the left. Mark Korthius was able to make contact, but his header went wide and high.
Calgary was rewarded in the 22nd minute when Nick Zuniga opened the scoring. He took a great free kick from about 23 yards out. Whitecaps keeper Mike Franks was frozen by the shot that ended up in the top left corner. More...
Losing Streak Continues For Team Calgary
By Jason Kmet - July 31, 2003
In the thirty days since the last A-League match in Calgary, the club has lost its owner, name, and several players. The Calgary Storm left on a road trip, and returned as the league-run Team Calgary. Rumors abound that there are several parties interested in buying the club. This talk has not helped the club on the field, as they extended their winless streak to 14 games as they lost to the Cincinnati Riverhawks 2-0. More...
Cincinnati Tops Calgary
August 1st, 2003
The Cincinnati Riverhawks (9-13-0, 27 points) defeated Team Calgary (4-16-3, 15 points) yesterday moving up to third place in the Central Division.
Defender Rasool Alizadeh began Cincinnatis offensive strike with a goal in the 54th minute, while forward Craig Yacks put the game out of reach for Team Calgary with his goal in the 90th minute. Midfielder Edward Child is credited with assists in both of the goals.
Gutsy Calgary Walks Away With a Point
From Allison Andrews - Timber Rattlers - July 27th, 2003
The Timbers allowed visiting Team Calgary to get out to an early lead, then pulled even in the 33rd minute on a header from Gavin Wilkinson, but even though the Timbers controlled much of the rest of the match, they were unable to score again, and the match ended up in a 1-1 draw in front of 4,261 fans at PGE Park. Calgary's lone goal was in the 8th minute by Nik Reyes. More...
Hapless Calgary Preyed upon by Sounders
By Ron Stickney - Seattle Pitch - July 26th, 2003
Riding the back of Andrew Gregor's two-goal performance, the Seattle Sounders' offense got a boost tonight against Team Calgary in a 6-0 romp in front of 2,217 fans at Seahawks Stadium. This is the second consecutive match in which the Sounders defeated Calgary 6-0. More...
Calgary Misses PK and Loses Match
From Whitecapsfc.com - July 24th, 2003
The Whitecaps F.C. Mens Team got the win they needed against Calgary, as they continue to try and chase down the Portland Timbers in the race for a Pacific Division playoff spot. Defender Nico Craveiro got the winner early on with his first ever A-League goal. Goalkeeper Alex Marques made his first start since May 30, and stopped an early penalty kick to maintain Vancouvers lead, while earning his second shutout of the season. More...
Calgary May Add W-League (Calgary Sun)
By CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN - Tuesday, July 22, 2003
With the prospect of new ownership for the soccer team formerly known as the Calgary Storm comes the possibility of a professional women's soccer side.
Two groups, possibly as many as four, are interested in purchasing the club, which former owner Michael Vandale walked away from earlier this month.
Team Calgary director of operations Andrea Willems said yesterday new ownership could start up a team of female pros. "It could end up happening and I think it would be good for the city because Edmonton is going to have a women's team and Vancouver already has one," said Willems.
But before that happens, new ownership has to take over the team, which is currently being managed by the United Soccer Leagues, the group that operates the A-League and W-League for women.
Willems said two groups have a serious interest in the team and are in the process of putting together business plans which will be presented to USL officials. "The USL would rather proceed more slowly than quickly ... there's always a chance a deal could be done fairly quickly but the USL is looking for long-term stability," Willems said.
USL chief operating officer David Askinas did not return phone calls yesterday.
Askinas was in town recently and met with board members from the Calgary Soccer Federation (CSF) and the Calgary Women's Soccer Association. Efem Yildirim, CSF vice-president, said W-League teams play six home and six away games and the operational cost is between $75,000 and $100,000. "From a Calgary Women's Soccer Association standpoint, we certainly wouldn't want to be an investor but we certainly want to work with whoever -- if there is an ownership interest in Calgary -- and help get people to the games."
As for the men, they continue to struggle on the field. Team Calgary has a 4-12-2 record and is currently gearing up for a three-game road trip on the West Coast starting Thursday in Vancouver and ending Sunday in Portland. Coach Tommy Wheeldon said the players' morale is fairly high, considering the mounting losses and the fact they weren't paid for the month of June until the league took over and gave them their paycheques. "The kids could have walked but they didn't," said Wheeldon, who had his salary chopped when Vandale left.
- - - HEADING FOR GERMANY: Team Calgary midfielder Nikolas Ledgerwood has signed on with 1860 Munich of the German Bundesliga. The 18-year-old from Lethbridge will play with a youth side and practise with the reserve team as he hones his skills until he moves up to the big squad.
A-League not giving up on Calgary (Herald)
Search starts for new owners to run franchise
Murray Rauw - Calgary Herald - Saturday, July 19, 2003
New owners are being sought so Calgary's soccer team can keep butting heads in the A-League.
The viability of pro soccer in Calgary has taken another hit, but the A-League won't walk away. It intends to keep the Calgary Storm operating the rest of the season while trying to find new owners.
"I'm optimistic there will be a new dawn in Calgary," said David Askinas, the executive director of the United Soccer League, which operates the
A-league under its umbrella. "It's only going to get better. We'll relaunch and we'll rebrand the team. We don't want to be associated with the Storm name anymore."
Askinas has been heading efforts to establish new owners for Calgary. He visited the city this week, but was at his office in Tampa, Fla., on Friday.
Other than announcing the demise of the franchise, it can't get any worse in the city that has watched the Calgary Boomers, Calgary Mustangs and Calgary Kickers come and go.
Storm owner Michael Vandale pulled the plug on the Storm franchise on July 1 after a second season of financial losses, leaving the club in the hands of the league. In his last statement before going underground, Vandale said it was impossible to succeed in the Calgary market unless Foothills Athletic Park was upgraded. He pegged his losses at more than $1 million.
While Askinas has quit defending Vandale's business decisions, especially the lack of an off-season marketing strategy, he agreed a refurbished facility in Calgary had to be part of the future for potential purchasers.
"The groups we're talking to understand that," said Askinas. "They have to develop a stadium and that has to be part of their business plan. People will learn from Mike's mistakes and they'll go in with different business plans."
Askinas said he has identified potential ownership groups, but wouldn't mention names.
"That has to remain totally confidential and it will stay that way," said Askinas, adding the league will take financial responsibility to operate the Storm for the rest of the season.
That includes four home dates at Foothills Stadium, which has been rented for $1,000 a game, the same price paid by Vandale.
Askinas said the Storm owes the City of Calgary "several thousand dollars," for previous games this year.
Willie Jurcevic, the city manager for arenas and athletic parks, has heard complaints about Foothills, but doesn't know of plans to build a better soccer facility. He said the stadium was built for track and field, and that will remain the priority.
He declined to discuss the amount of money the Storm owes the city. Nine home games have been played, and Jurcevic said some payments had been made.
The A-League wants Calgary to survive. Next season, an expansion franchise in Edmonton is slated to begin play and the visibility of a second Alberta team is expected to help both teams in hyping public interest as well as cutting travel costs.
Edmonton's owners will have close ties to minor soccer in the provincial capital. It's a model Askinas is expected to try to copy in Calgary.
Meanwhile, Vandale won a reprieve in Court of Queen's Bench Friday, when John Kelly's application to gain a court order to block any sale of the club by the league was adjourned for a week. Kelly said a value of $400,000 to $500,000 has been placed on the franchise, but argued before Chief Justice C.A. Kent that it's the only asset the club had left.
Kelly told the court he represents two former Storm staffers who claim they are owed money by Vandale and a sale would leave them without any chance of collecting.
Calgary drops one to El Paso on International TV
by Duke Keith, a-league.com Match Reporter - 18.Jul.2003
(DUDLEY FIELD, El Paso, TX) - The El Paso Patriots returned home to Dudley scalded after their third straight loss last weekend, but still firmly in the hunt in a tightening Central Division race, and in front of a national television audience on Fox SportsWorld El Paso defeated Team Calgary, 3-1, to regain second place in the division.
The Patriots (8-10-2, 26 points) lead Cincinnati (8-10-0, 24 points) by two points going into the Riverhawks home match with fourth-place division rival Milwaukee Saturday.
Team Calgary (4-13-2, 14 points) remains in the cellar of the Pacific Division, and played its first match since being taken over by the United Soccer Leagues this week.
For the first time El Paso head coach Jesus "Chuy" Enriquez started leading scorer Laurenco Andrade and Omar Mora up front together, which proved to be a brilliant move.
Mora, who seems to finally be getting into form after a long season with Mexican First Division-A side CD Zacatepéc, proved to be a constant thorn in the side of the Calgary defense; and Andrade, who was also the leading scorer for First Division-A Cobras de Ciudád Juárez, played unselfishly, pushing beautiful lead passes in for Mora's finishing touch.
In the 20th minute, Andrade dropped a beautiful lead ball from midfield up front for a hard-charging Mora, who ripped a far-post shot past Team Calgary goalkeeper David Wiebenga into the right upper 90 for Mora's first goal of the season.
Just 16 minutes later the tandem hooked up again, displaying deft one-touch moves against a frozen Calgary defense. Once again, it was Andrade's pass who set up Mora from eight yards out, shooting a slow-moving but accurate ball past Wiebenga, who had come off his line to challenge.
And so it went for the rest of the half, but the second half Team Calgary came to life due almost entirely to the efforts of defender Sean Fraser. Ironically, though he had no shots, Fraser's speed was well-utilized by Calgary coach Tommy Wheeldon, who sent the diminutive backliner forward to challenge the quick El Paso defense.
Challenge he did, and in the 55th minute was promptly brought down in the box by Patriots defender Joel Rios.
Referee Misail Tsapos immediately pointed to the penalty spot, and midfielder Nik Zuniga planted his shot firmly left of middle past El Paso goalkeeper Scott Alexander to cut the deficit in half.
Team Calgary continued to make progress against a Patriots' team that seemed to lose its concentration after going up by two.
But after subbing in fresh blood El Paso regained its composure and its two-goal lead. In the 61st minute Calgary midfielder Conrad Chala took down substitute forward Michael Griego inches outside the Calgary 18-yard box.
After Tsapos awarded the direct kick, Griego put the icing on the Patriots cake with an unforgiving shot, driving the ball through the Calgary wall and by a diving Weibenga for the final goal of the night.
El Paso next plays in the third round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, hosting the PDL's Fresno Fuego Tuesday at 7 p.m. MDT. The winner advances to play the Los Angeles Galaxy of Major League Soccer in the fourth round, Wednesday, August 6th in Los Angeles.
EL PASO 3, TEAM CALGARY 1
Scoring: ELP Mora (20, Andrade), ELP Mora (36, Andrade), TC Zuniga (55, PK), ELP Griego (71).
TEAM CALGARY: David Weibenga, Sean Fraser, Liam DaSilva (38, Ian Clarke), Thomas Wheeldon, C.J. Pezsneker, Jordan Gillespie, Conrad Chala, Nik Reyes (82, Brendon Garrity), Nik Zuniga (86, Jermaine Richards), Dwayne Gareau (60, Keegan Thomas), Mark Korthuis.
EL PASO: Scott Alexander, Carlos Martinez, Joel Rios, Hamlet Diaz, Freddy Juárez (89, Guillermo McFarlane), Mauricio Rocha, Junro Narita (83, Mario Garcia), Javier Carrazco (45, Ahmed Figueroa), Enrique Cervantes (73, Tim Pierce), Laurenco Andrade, Omar Mora (61, Michael Griego).
Shots: TC 1-3-4, ELP 6-4-10. Saves: TC 3-2-5, ELP 0-2-2. Fouls: TC 9-7-16, ELP 9-9-18. Offsides: TC 2-0-0, ELP 1-4-5. Corner Kicks: TC 0-1-1, ELP 5-2-7. Cautions: TC 2 (Korthuis 27, Chala 69), ELP 2 (Diaz 56, Rocha 89). Officials: Misail Tsapos, Aric Bonner, Gibby Widner, Andrew Gage. Attendance: 1,815.
Calgary Loses Close One in Vancouver
July 11th, 2003 - Burnaby, B.C.
Goals by Vancouver's John Sulentic and Jason Jordan were enough to hand Calgary it's fifth consecutive loss on Friday night. Calgary's last two defeats come after having handed the reigns of ownership over to the United Soccer League for the remainder of the season, as the club looks for new owners.
Calgary managed to open the scoring in the 34th minute, against the run of play, when Nicholas Zuniga managed to find the space and time to slot one into the Vancouver net. Zuniga's goal was the first Calgary tally in five games.
Calgary keeper, Dave Wiebenga, was kept very busy and was forced to make a number of spectacular saves on the night. In the final minute of the first half, Wiebenga was called upon to make back-to-back stops on a blast by Steve Kindel and a glancing header by Oliver Heald.
Vancouver equalized in the 57th minute when Sulentic took a pass from Andrew Veer and blasted it by Wiebenga.
The Whitecaps took the lead for good in the 77th minute when a scorching Sulentic free kick was parried by Wiebenga, but the rebound fell to a waiting Jason Jordan, who slammed it home.
The loss drops Calgary's record to 4-2-11, while Vancouver's record improves to 7-3-6.
Calgary plays it's next match away to El Paso on Friday, July 18th. This match will be featured on Fox Sports World. Consult your local listings or nearest pub to see when you can watch it on the telly. Share the excitement and watch it with someone you love (aaaahhhhh).
A-League Will Keep Storm Afloat
Calgary Herald - Thursday, July 10, 2003
With A-League owners prepared to foot the bill for the rest of the soccer season, the orphaned Calgary Storm travelled to Seattle for Wednesday's regularly scheduled game -- and lost 6-0 to the Sounders.
"The owners have decided to finance the Calgary franchise until the end of the current season,'' Tim Holt, head of the A-League branch of the United Soccer Leagues, said Wednesday.
Late last week, when Storm owner Michael Vandale threw in the towel after two seasons and change at the helm and handed the franchise back to the league, USL president Dave Askinas estimated it would take between $80,000 and $100,000 to complete Calgary's second year at the A-League level.
A two-thirds vote of the remaining 18 franchise owners was required to save the franchise. Holt said he was not at liberty to provide the vote breakdown.
The search for an owner or ownership group continues.
"Discussions are ongoing with at least two groups and a couple of other Calgary-area businessmen,'' said Holt.
"There are two ways you can look at trying to find ownership -- short-term and long-term. We're not looking for the first candidate, we're looking for the right candidate. An ownership that will take the team through 2004 and beyond.
"That may take a couple weeks, it may take a couple months.
"Mike did his best, but we need some with more business saavy to take hold of the baton on the next leg of the relay.''
© Copyright 2003 Calgary Herald
USL to manage Calgary franchise
Thursday, July 10, 2003
TAMPA, FL - United Soccer Leagues announced today that Calgary FC, Inc.'s A-League franchise rights have been terminated and that USL will manage, effective immediately, Team Calgary throughout the remainder of the 2003 A-League season in place of the terminated Calgary Storm club.
"It is an unfortunate situation that we are stepping in to manage the team in Calgary, however, we are very optimistic for the future of A-League soccer in Alberta with the addition of Edmonton next spring," said USL Chief Operating Officer Dave Askinas. "We are in discussions with the city of Calgary, Calgary Minor Soccer and a number of individuals and groups from the business community interested in the possibility of owning an A-League team and are confident we will find a solution for the 2004 season, perhaps sooner."
USL will manage Team Calgary with funding pooled from the other 18 A-League franchises, who earlier this week approved the decision to take over operation of the team.
"We are appreciative our owners have given us the opportunity to manage the team and expect the squad and key staff members to remain intact," said A-League Director of Operations Tim Holt. "The team will fulfill all of its schedule obligations for the remainder of the season."
USL also announced the termination of the Premier Development League Calgary franchise today. The club's scheduled matches for this weekend will be fulfilled by the Abbotsford Rangers, who were previously playing in the Northwest Division as a provisional member.
"The Abbotsford Rangers have proven themselves to be a competitive team on the field and having them complete the season on behalf of the Calgary Storm Prospects is the most logical and practical solution," said PDL Director of Operations Steve Clamp.
The Yakima Reds' two postponed matches in Calgary from this past weekend (July 5 and 6) have been ruled forfeits, giving the Reds two 1-0 wins.
Calgary Gets Soundly Thrashed By Seattle
July 9th, 2003
Final Score: Calgary 0 - 6 Seattle (Ouch!!)
Check out Ron Stickney's match report at Seattle Pitch: http://seattlepitch.tripod.com/matches/2003/jul9.html
Owner gives Storm the boot
By IAN BUSBY, CALGARY SUN - July 4, 2003
Vandale, who's been majority owner of the organization since it started a professional team three years ago, handed the club's operations over to the United Soccer Leagues yesterday to find new ownership for the A-League squad.
"The team is sort of on hold for the next few days," said USL's chief of operations David Askinas. "They're on a break (from games) and don't play until next Wednesday. We're optimistic we'll be able to complete a deal by then.
"Our hope is we'll have a seamless transition into a new ownership group without the league becoming involved. If things need to be taken care of, the league will deal with them, on behalf of the new ownership group."
Vandale, who says he's lost $1 million operating the team, cites
personal reasons for leaving the team but feels he's taken the Storm to a certain level
and that someone else will have a better chance to make the necessary improvements the
"In order to get things to a head, this is really what had to be done," Vandale said. "It was tough but really, right now, the franchise is here and it's important to keep it here. They need a new venue -- I've said that since the start -- and I don't think anybody would dispute that. "Maybe the new ownership will have better luck dealing with the city. That's the biggest issue of all."
With a A-League franchise in Edmonton slated to begin play next
season, the USL needs the Calgary franchise to keep operating for a regional rivalry.
Calgary has a 4-10-2 record this season The team won only
four games last season.
Head coach Tommy Wheeldon said rumours of the management change
have dogged the players for a couple of weeks and the change could bring some enthusiasm
to the team, especially if the new owners can bring in some fresh talent.
Vandale gives up on A-League dream
USL takes over franchise, looks for new ownership
George Johnson Calgary Herald - Friday, July 04, 2003
Dave Askinas called it a hiccup.
Tommy Wheeldon called it a distraction.
Mike Vandale called it a day.
"It's just, well, time someone else took over,'' explained Vandale, in handing the keys of the Calgary Storm over to the United Soccer League after close to three years footing the bills.
The Storm have not folded. For the moment, consider them orphaned. Askinas, the USL's chief operating officer, emphasized that discussions are already underway with two Calgary groups to assume control. As of now, the team's upcoming six-game road swing is not in jeopardy. Business, he added, to be conducted as usual.
But we are, after all, talking semi-pro soccer here, which has a mortality rate in this country of just-hatched baby sea turtles separated from the pack on their way back to the water.
Once again, the fate of the game seems to be hanging in the balance.
The refrain is so sad, yet so achingly familiar. So many tries, so many crises. So much passion, so much heartache. Such fanciful dreams, such sobering reality. Such grandiose plans, such clumsy execution.
Maybe these guys all spent too much time in their youth heading balls on cold, wet nights. Only a deeply-ingrained -- some might say blind -- love of the game could convince anyone to try.
Without divulging commas and decimal points, Vandale -- who certainly had his critics this past year and a half as the Storm struggled in the quantum leap in on-pitch calibre from the Premier Development League to the A-League -- estimates a personal hit of over $1 million in the two-and-a-half years.
"This is only an interruption,'' was how Askinas described the situation. "We told the team to take the weekend off, go on furlough, and we'll be back to them on Monday. The players shouldn't worry. They'll be paid for the time.
"I guess you could say the franchise is in limbo, but we fully hope to have news of permanent ownership soon, perhaps as early as next week. We're confident things will work out.
"Mike did what he could. He gave his heart and soul to the Storm. But for personal reasons he had to step aside. That was only Phase 1. We need somebody now who can take the franchise to Phase II, and that means forging closer relationships with the soccer community in the area.''
The remaining 18 league owners are set to vote on whether or not to equally absorb Calgary expenses until the end of the season, as a safeguard should suitable new ownership not be unearthed in the meantime.
A two-thirds majority would be needed to carry the motion. Askinas estimates the bill to play out the remaining 12 Storm games at between $80,000 and $100,000.
A league takeover would be a next-to-worst case scenario. The worst being . . . well, you shouldn't need Sir Alex Ferguson to draw a diagram.
"That dollar figure is really not a big burden, if you divide it up,'' said Askinas.
"In fact, the league has recommended the owners accept the proposal. We remain convinced that Calgary can be a successful franchise. A provincial rival (Edmonton) is coming on board next year. It's important to us that Alberta remain a strong presence in our league.''
As he was exiting the pitch, stage right, Vandale took time to issue a red card to an ongoing complaint of his -- the condition of creaky old Foothills Athletic Park.
"It's the biggest obstacle we faced,'' he reiterated. "We go to a one-off in Saskatoon and draw 6,000 fans, then we come home to Foothills and play in front of 1,500,'' he sighed.
"Calgary is a city of a million people with a lot more money than Saskatoon. So why (are) there 6,000 there and only 1,500 here?
"The venue simply is not good enough.''
When asked the last time he approached the city about funnelling money into a re-do, he replied: "A while ago. It's a difficult sell, with roads and infrastructure money going elsewhere.
"I hope the new ownership group has better luck with an upgrade to Foothills. I certainly didn't have any. What we do have here is tremendous corporate support. I can't say enough good things about the way we were supported in that area.
"Whoever gets involved will also need to strengthen the ties with minor soccer. The Edmonton team joining the league has a deal with the minor soccer community there that brings them $15 with every registration in return for a season ticket. That means $600,000 up front to that franchise. It's so important to be strong in that area.''
On the pitch, the Storm players continue training, doubtless on pins and needles about what will transpire over the next week or so.
"It's been difficult for the lads,'' conceded coach Wheeldon. "There've been rumors floating around the city for three weeks now. The boys get out and about and hear them, and they can't help but wonder. I was actually very pleased with the spirit they showed against Toronto (a 2-0 loss), because we found out what was happening just before the game.
"We've been told that the league is looking for new ownership, or that it could take the franchise over.
"It's a tough thing to go through but just look at Vancouver. They went through a similar situation last year and now are going from strength to strength.
"You've just got to believe things will work out.''
Calgary's Slide Continues Versus "Missing Lynx"
July 1st, 2003
Once again Calgary's offence failed to produce and once again Calgary dropped points in a match that they could have won.
First half goals by Toronto's Ali Ngon and Nikki Vignjevic were enough to give the Lynx full points and put Calgary in another hole in terms of the Voyageurs Cup competition.
Calgary keeper, Dave Wiebenga, had no chance on either goal. Calgary surrendered yet another goal inside the first ten minutes when, on a defensive miscue, Ngon found himself all alone against the keeper and easily slotted it home. Vignjevic's 17th minute tally came from a perfectly placed free-kick taken from 25 yards out. He bent it over the wall and into the top right corner, past the sprawling Wiebenga.
Calgary had it's chances, but just could not put one behind Toronto keeper, Theo Zagar.
Lack of scoring has been the major concern of the Storm this season, and whoever finds themselves at the helm in the near future will have to address this if Calgary wishes to put some more points on the table.
Calgary now heads out on a four week, six game roadtrip. The Storm will play in the home houses of Seattle (x2), Vancouver (x2), El Paso, and Portland. We wish the lads the best of luck. Chins up, a new day is dawning.
Portland Wins Second Straight Over Storm
June 29th, 2003 - courtesy of portlandtimbers.com
CALGARY, Alb. After a scoreless first half, McKinley Tennyson wasted little time in putting the Timbers on top in the opening minutes of the second and Fadi Afash added on a goal in the 85th minute, giving Portland (7-7-0, 21 pts) a 2-0 win over the Calgary Storm Sunday afternoon at Foothills Park.
The go-ahead score, in the 46th minute, came on a Scott Benedetti corner kick to Tennyson, who took the low-flying kick and dialed it in from point-blank.
The win was the Timbers third-straight, putting them in sole possession of second place in the Pacific Division and only four points behind division-leading Seattle. Portland has won five of their last six matches and is at .500 for the first time all season.
Fadi Afash got free late in the match and drew a foul inside the box to set up a penalty kick in the 85th minute. Afash took the kick and put it into the left side of the net, denying the Calgary goalkeeper any chance at a save.
In the first half, Portland missed an opportunity to get on the board early after Calgary defender Ajai Authers fell down, freeing Afash to dish it off to Tennyson, whos attempt sailed high from six yards out.
Calgary (4-9-2) had an early chance as well from inside 10 yards, but Richard Henry was unable to convert.
Another opportunity for the Timbers came in the 43rd minute, as Jake Sagare got loose and took a shot on Calgary goalkeeper Dave Wiebenga, who managed the save. A follow-up header by Fadi Afash also came up short.
Henry nearly deadlocked it in the 59th, but Josh Saunders got his fingers on the ball and deflected the shot off the right post.
Saunders logged his second shutout in as many games after being loaned to the Timbers for the remainder of the season from San Jose.
SCORING SUMMARY: POR Tennyson, 46th (Benedetti); Afash, 85th (UA)
PENALTY SUMMARY: CAL Gillespie, YC (76th); POR Benedetti, YC (88th) Ritchie, YC
LINEUPS: CALGARY (4-9-2) Wiebenga GK, Fraser D, DeSilva D, Authers D, Peszneker D, Gillespie D, Chala M, Henry M, Zuniga M, Richards F (Reyes), Korthuis F (Clarke); PORTLAND (7-7-0) Saunders GK, Ritchie D, Morrison D, Downing D, Heinzen D, Alcaraz M, Winters M, Sagare M, Benedetti M, Afash F, Tennyson F (Antoniuk).
Calgary Lose In Overtime to Portland
June 27th, 2003
Calgary had a chance to leapfrog Portland on Friday night, but could not bury the shorthanded Timbers at PGE Park.
Portland carried much of the play on the evening, but found themselves down to ten men when Gavin Wilkinson was sent off for a second bookable offence in the 75th minute.
Calgary could not capitalize and Portland's Byron Alvarez made them pay in the second minute of overtime when he slotted a goal off of his own rebound. Calgary keeper, Dave Wiebenga had made an impressive save on the initial shot, but the rebound landed back at the feet of Alvarez who roofed it over the sprawling stopper.
Calgary was without the leadership of coach Tommy Wheeldon, who remains on suspension. Calgary was also without the services of Ian Dawes, who has returned to Liverpool to seek a contract for the upcoming season in England.
Calgary and Portland meet again on Sunday, June 29th at 3:00pm at fabled Foothills Park.
Calgary Gains Another Point Against Seattle
By Ron Stickney - Seattle Pitch - June 22nd, 2003
The Seattle Sounders and the Calgary Storm played to a 1-1 draw Sunday afternoon at Foothills Park in Calgary. It was Seattle's sixth overtime game in their last seven matches.
The Sounders (22 points from 12 matches) and Storm (14 points from 13 matches) were originally scheduled to play the game May 10th, but it was postponed because of snow. Instead of snowflakes the two teams played the match in soggy conditions and temperatures in the low 40s. It rained heavily for two hours before the opening kick but the rain abated by game time.
Seattle fell behind in the 38th minute when Calgary's Nik Zuniga blasted a ball past Sounders goalkeeper Rich Cullen from 15 yards left of the Seattle goal. Cullen got his body on the ball but couldn't control it as it slid under him and across the goal line.
Seattle tied the game at 1-1 in the 53rd minute on Andrew Gregor's goal, assisted by Marco Velez. Both of Gregor's goals this season have come in Calgary against the Storm. Gregor left the game in the second half after injuring his leg.
Late Goal Draws Calgary Even With Vancouver
By Jason Kmet - June 15th, 2003
After a lackluster 3-0 loss in Saskatoon on Saturday, the Calgary Storm was looking for payback at Foothills Park where they had a rematch against the Vancouver Whitecaps.
The first decent scoring opportunity happened in the 13th minute when Calgary's Jordan Gillespie weaved through a couple of Vancouver defenders and approached the Whitecaps goal. His shot went just outside the right post...MORE
Storm Strike Late to Tie Whitecaps
June 15, 2003
A goal in the dying minutes of the match gave Calgary a valuable point in the rematch versus Vancouver on a beautiful Father's Day Sunday.
The owner of the heroic boot was Liam DeSilva, who found himself in the right place at the right time to bend the twine in the right side of the net and make sure that Calgary walked away with a deserved point. It was the first point and the first goal that Calgary has posted against their western rivals in threee games this season. DeSilva's tap came in the 88th minute of play.
Calgary found themselves trailing for much of the game after an apparently harmless 22nd minute shot by Vancouver's Tiarnan King managed to slip through Calgary keeper, Jamey Glasnovic. Glasnovic appeared to try and stop the ball with his left hand, while down low, but instead, it dribbled right past him.
Leaky goal aside, Calgary fans felt that the Storm should have come away with all 3 points, but the woodwork and the Vancouver keeper thought otherwise.
In the first half, a Richard Henry header, off of a corner kick, found the crossbar, and a Jermaine Richards attempt, across the Vancouver goal mouth, found the left stanchion. Then, just minutes before DeSilva's last ditch heroics, a fine through-ball found Sean Fraser alone with only the Vancouver keeper to beat, but big Mike Franks swept his legs to deny the goal.
Fortunatley, the approximately 2000 Calgary fans that were in attendance were finally rewarded for there boisterous cheering, and the Calgary players can feel like that came away with something.
The next home match is Sunday, June 22nd versus the Seattle Sounders. This is the make-up game for the one postponed on May 10th. Game time is 2:00pm at fabulous Foothills Park
Storm Lose Home Game On The Road
June 14, 2003
In a special clash with the Vancouver Whitecaps at Saskatoon's Griffith Stadium, Calgary found themselves shut out, 3-0, in front of a largly partisan crowd.
The crowd may have been large (5900) and boisterously pro-Calgary, but they could not lift the team to victory on Saturday afternoon.
A first-half goal, off of a cross, by Jeff Clarke, and two second-half tallies by Jason Jordan and Steve Kindel, were enough to do Calgary in. Those final two strikes came late in the match, giving the Calgary faithful something to cheer about until the very end.
The two squads will battle again on Sunday evening at 7:00pm at fabled Foothills Stadium.
Storm Drop One to Lowly Indiana
June 7, 2003
In a match that Calgary coach, Tommy Wheeldon, coined "an absolute disgrace," the Storm lost 2-0 to the cellar dwelling Indiana Blast.
First half goals by Semir Mesanovic and Jamar Beasley handed Indiana thier first win of the season.
A Calgary win would have lifted them to .500 and placed them comfortably in sole possession of second place in the Pacific Division. Instead, Calgary's record stands at 4-6 and they share second spot with Portland, who defeated El Paso on Saturday night.
Calgary's next matches are the much anticipated travelling roadshow with the Vancouver Whitecaps on the 14th and 15th. Saturday's match will be played in the neutral city of Saskatoon, while Sunday's match will be fought at fabled Foothills Park. Tickets for both matches are still available.
Late Strike Gives Calgary The Win
June 6, 2003
An 87th minute blast from 20 yards out by Nicholas Zuniga gave Calgary an important 1-0 win over the Cincinnati Riverhawks on Friday night. The match was played at a rain-slicked Town and Country Stadium, across the Ohio border in Wilder, Kentucky.
Some big saves by Storm keeper, Dave Wiebenga, along with the woodwork helped keep Cincinnati off of the scoresheet.
Calgary had the services of Jordan Gillespie, whose two game suspension was lifted by the USL for lack of evidence (we all know he wouldn't have punched that Sounder, right?)
The win lifts Calgary into 2nd place in the Pacific Division, one point ahead of Vancouver and just two points behind Seattle.
Calgary's next match is Saturday, June 7th, versus the Indiana Blast. Game time is at 6:36 MST.
Shifty Striker Solves Storm
Montreal shuts down Calgary's offence
By CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN - June 2, 2003 www.calgarysun.com
A season-high crowd showed up yesterday to watch the Calgary Storm take on the Montreal Impact and try to equal its win total from last year. However, the 1,000 Storm faithful on hand at Foothills Athletic Park witnessed the Eduardo Sebrango show, which quickly became a horror movie for those in the stands.
Instead of Calgary getting its fourth win, it was Sebrango putting up four points in a 4-0 Impact win. The 30-year-old scored a goal, was credited with a Storm own goal and set up a pair in the drubbing. "It was a good game. We knew the Storm was playing better than last year and we wanted to come in and have a good start and we did," said the shifty forward, whose team is now unbeaten in its last six games and is 4-1-2 overall.
It took 19 minutes for the Impact to find the back of the net when a wide-open Mauro Biello took a feed from Sebrango and redirected the ball past Storm goalie David Wiebenga.
Montreal went up 2-0 on a bad goal, this one by Sita-Taty Matondo from the short side that went in off Wiebenga on a shot the 'keeper would love to have back. Sebrango got the assist.
Then, just a minute later, Sebrango sent a ball across the Calgary net from 15 metres out on the right side that went in off Storm defender C.J. Pesznecker.
It was, for all intents and purposes, game over for the young Calgary team, which couldn't match the ball control, speed and experience of the Impact. "We were dead and buried and it's a learning curve for (our players)," said Calgary head coach Tommy Wheeldon, whose side falls to 3-5 on the season. "If you make mistakes, you make mistakes and you get done. "If it's Major League Soccer, you can make mistakes like that, but if it's A-League soccer, you can't."
Sebrango would score in the 78th minute, heading in a perfect cross from Abraham Francois.
The Storm's best chance came just before Montreal scored. Nick Zuniga took a free kick from just outside the Impact penalty box. He sent it wide left of the net to Mark Korthuis, who played a lovely header to Liam de Silva's but the defender's shot found the crossbar. "It was a silly 10-minute spell. We should have taken the lead and if Liam doesn't miss that chance, it's a different game," said Wheeldon. Calgary did play well in the first 20 minutes, getting most of its five shots on goal in the early going. But in the second half, the deflated side managed only a single shot on goal and there was nary a scoring chance to be had, even from a couple of Storm corner kicks which were booted out of the attacking zone by Montreal.
Calgary now travels to Cincinnati for a game on Friday night.
Storm are Humbled by Montreal Powerhouse
June 1, 2003
Two goals by the Montreal superstar, Eduardo Sebrango, as well as individual markers by Mauro Biello and Sita-Taty Matondo helped Montreal to cruise to an easy 4-0 victory over the hometown lads at Foothills Park on Sunday afternoon.
Sebrango was the star of the game, setting up the goals that he did not personally score and presenting Calgary with a host of problems throughout the match. He even had the opportunity for a hat-trick, but sent his spot kick into the stratosphere. Apparently, he prefers to score his goals the old-fashioned way, with style.
The game could have gone differently for the Storm, had they managed to convert two sitters, prior to conceding the first goal to Montreal. The difference is this: at this moment in time, Montreal knows how to find the back of the net; Calgary does not.
STORM FINALLY CUT DOWN TIMBERS
by Jason Kmet - May 25, 2003
The 2003 A-League schedule maker has arranged for clubs in the Pacific Division to become very familiar with each other. Even though this was only the Calgary Storm's seventh game of the season, they faced the Portland Timbers for the third time this year on Sunday at Foothills Park. The Storm has gone winless in four games last year as well as twice this year against the Timbers. On this pleasant afternoon in front of a modest crowd, the Calgary side finally broke through and defeated Portland for the first time in their history by a score of 2-1...MORE
Calgary Rallies to Beat Portland
May 25, 2003
Two first half goals by Conrad Chala and Mark Korthuis lifted Calgary past the struggling Portland Timbers on Sunday evening.
Despite surrendering an early goal to Portland's McKinley Tennyson, Calgary managed to shut down the Timbers for the remainder of the game and also managed to find the offence needed to aquire the full three points.
Note: Ian Dawes appears to have reaggravated a nagging injury and had to leave the match in the 60th minute. A full report by Jason will follow.
Calgary Loses Last Second Heartbreaker
May 22, 2003
A goal by Seattle's Andrew Gregor in the 110th minute crushed a valiant effort by the Calgary defence and keeper, Dave Wiebenga.
The goal, a top corner shot from just outside the 18 yeard box, came in the dying seconds of the second overtime period.
Calgary was under constant pressure in this match. Yet, the herculean efforts of the defence, some amazing reflex saves by Wiebenga, and the woodwork appeared to have allowed the Storm to escape with a point. Alas, it was not to be.
CALGARY OUTLASTS EL PASO 2-1
By Jason Kmet - May 17, 2003
Timbers Score Early and Often
By Allison Andrews (courtesy of Timber Rattlers Website) http://www.soccercityusa.com/timbers/cal051403.htm
May 14, 2003
2003 A-League scoring champ McKinley Tennyson scored twice, and 2003 goal-scoring co-leader Fadi Afash also scored as the Timbers zoomed out to quick two goal lead, and ended up with a convincing 4-1 win over the Calgary Storm in a match played in front of an announced crowd of 2,772 at PGE Park. Jason Melendez had the other Timbers goal, while Mark Korthuis had the lone goal for the Storm.
The Timbers wasted absolutely no time getting on the board, with perhaps one of the fastest goals in A-League history. Hugo Alcaraz-Cuellar played a diagonal cross into the box, which bounced in front of Calgary goalkeeper James Glasnovic. Portland's McKinley Tennyson got to the ball first, and headed the ball over the keeper across the goal mouth, where it was knocked home by Fadi Afash, and just 35 seconds into the match, the Timbers were already up 1-0.
The second goal didn't take much longer. In the 7th minute, Afash played a ball wide to Tennyson, who cut back in across the top of the box, and hit a low, hard shot to the bottom left corner of the net, just inside the post, to give the Timbers an early 2-0 lead. Portland's Scott Benedetti had a good shot at a header off a corner kick in the 13th minute, but his header towards the far post was covered by a scrambling Glasnovic.
In the 17th minute, the Storm had their first good attack after Gavin Wilkinson lost the ball near midfield, but Nick Downing scrambled back to knock the ball out of bounds. Two minutes later, another turnover had Ian Dawes in on net, but his shot was a yard over the net.
In the 26th minute, a dangerous cross in from the right side by Alcaraz-Cuellar required a diving punch-out by Glasnovic to stop the ball getting to Tennyson, and stopped a dangerous Timbers threat. Six minutes later, Nicolas Zuniga got around the Timbers defense and made a diagonal run into the Timbers box, and his shot required a jumping save from Portland's keeper Cole Burgman, who knocked it wide left on the hard shot from 15 yards.
But in the 36th minute, the Timbers looked ready to take a 3-0 lead when anTennyson cross to the middle of the box saw Benedetti wide open, but the ball was slightly behind him, and he stumbled on the turf, and was unable to put the ball towards the empty Calgary net. Later that minute, the Storm pulled one back when Burgman was not able to hold onto a Conrad Chala cross, and the ball fell to the feet of Mark Korthuis, who knocked the ball home, and the Storm had pulled to within a goal at 2-1.
The game looked to be a one-goal affair at halftime, but deep into stoppage time, a low pass from Alcaraz-Cuellar to Tennyson deep inside the box allowed the Timbers striker to flick the ball towards net, where it hit off the right post and was into the net, and just before the halftime whistle sounded, the Timbers had widened the lead to 3-1.
In the first twenty minutes of the second half, only the Timbers were getting shots on net, with Alcaraz-Cuellar, Afash, and Manuel Brasil forcing saves from Glasnovic. In the 68th minute, a dangerous Calgary cross into the Timbers box required a punch-out by Burgman, who came well out of the goal mouth to barely get a fist on the ball. The game became more physical as the second half dragged on, with elbows being exchanged on violent collisions a few minutes apart, the second drawing a yellow card on Portland's Alcaraz-Cuellar. But in the 80th minute, the Timbers scored another goal, seemingly out of nowhere. Portland's Jason Melendez made a charge deep into the box after a free ball, and flicked it up over Glasnovic from only seven or eight yards out. Melendez was flattened in the collision with the keeper, but the high chip came down barely under the bar to put the Timbers up 4-1 as Melendez recorded his first professional goal.
The Storm had one more good chance to score in the 87th minute when Zuniga took a free kick for Calgary just a yard outside the Timbers box. Both teams had a few more shots on goal in the last few minutes, but none forced difficult saves by the respective keepers, and the Timbers held on for a 4-1 victory, their second over Calgary in three days.
Storm Drop Home Opener 1-0
By Jason Kmet
The Calgary Storm began their home schedule for 2003 with a loss to divisional rival Portland on Wednesday night in front of a small crowd at Foothills Park. There were a lot of skeptics who thought the club would not survive into its sophomore season, but they have returned with a revamped roster which showed signs that they can improve on their four win inaugural season.
The Timbers had a decent chance early when Storm defender Liam DeSilva gave the ball away to McKinley Tennyson right in front of the net, but Jamie Glasnovic made the save at point blank range.
In the 6th minute, the Storm showed a bit of offense. C.J. Pesznecker made a run along the left side and put a nice ball on the ground across to Sean Fraser, but he put it over the net. Jordan Gillespie also attempted to set up Fraser from the same position in the 11th minute, but the Storm forwards header went wide.
Portland had a couple of chances in the 14th minute. First there was a chaotic scramble in front of the net, with the ball being chased by several players. Glasnovic was able to scoop it up. Moments later Timbers scoring machine Fadi Afash was alone in front of the net on his back. He tried to flick the ball over Glasnovic, but the keeper was able to reach up and deflect the ball over the net.
One of the Storms new Jamaican recruits had the next two scoring chances. Jermaine Richards knocked a volley over the bar in the 19th minute. In the 32nd minute, he launched a rocket from about 40 yards from goal. Timbers keeper Cole Burgman was able to get in front of it, but he bobbled the ball. Unfortunately for the Storm, the keeper recovered before anyone could collect the loose ball.
The deadlock was broken in the 43rd minute when an unmarked Afash put the ball past Glasnovic after receiving an excellent pass from Tennyson on the left side. There was some suggestion there was a handball on the play, but the officials did not call anything.
There wasnt much to report in the second half until the 57th minute, when Portlands Brian Winters had a breakaway of sorts. He didnt have total control of the ball and Glasnovic was able to come off his line and successfully challenge him.
The Storm applied some pressure just after the hour mark. Substitute Mark Korthius had the best chance in the 73rd minute, but was unable to finish.
The Timbers tried to pad their lead in the 81st minute when Manuel Brasil put the ball through to Jason Melendez in the middle but he shot the ball wide.
Calgarys last chance to tie occurred near full time, but Nicolas Zuniga was not able to control the ball in the Timbers box sufficiently to get a shot on goal.
Lineups: Calgary: Jamie Glasnovic, Jermaine Richards ( Mark Korthius 57th ), Liam DeSilva, Ajai Authers, C.J. Pesznecker, Jordan Gillespie, Conrad Chala, Richard Henry, Nicolas Zuniga, Nik Reyes (Dawes 40th), Sean Fraser (Keegan Thomas 78th) .
Portland: Cole Burgman, Nick Downing (Bryn Ritchie 87th), Gavin Wilkenson, Aaron Heinzen, Brian Winters, Hugo Alcaraz-Cueller, Manuel Brasil, Jason Melendez, Scott Benedetti, Fadi Afash (Jacob Vaughn 74th), McKinley Tennyson (Daniel Antoniuk 57th)
Goals: Portland: Afash (43rd)
Cautions: Calgary: Peszneker (40th), DeSilva (45th)
Attendance: unannounced estimates from 250 to 600. Weather: sunny, calm 10C (approximately 50F)
STORM WARNINGS: The public address announcer started the proceedings with some unintentional humor when he introduced the opposition as the Seattle Sounders. He quickly corrected himself Nik Reyes left the game with an injury Reyes was a key member of the 2001 Storm PDL side that went to the league championship. He played in local league last season Sean Fraser is another member of the 2001 PDL side to return to the club this year. However, Fraser never saw the pitch in 2001 because of an injury Storm forward Brett Bachelu was injured last week in Seattle and will be out of the lineup for about two weeks Defender Thomas Wheeldon Jr. sat the game out due to suspension Among the Storm players making their first appearance at Foothills Park were Jamaicans Richard Henry, Jermaine Richards, and Ajai Authers. All three are on loan from Constance Springs FC of the Jamaica National Premier League. Henry has represented Jamaica at the senior national team level. Richards and Authers have both played for the Jamaican U23 national team Nineteen year old English midfielder Ian Dawes made his A-League debut. He spent the last six years in the youth system of soccer giants Liverpool Due to technical difficulties, there were no national anthems played and the Timbers were unable to broadcast the game back to Portland The club returns to Foothills Park on Saturday when the El Paso Patriots pay a visit.
Storm Fall Flat
By CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN - May 13, 2003
Looking to make a statement in its home-opener, the Calgary Storm fell short against the Portland Timbers last night.
Instead of winning two in a row, the Storm fell 1-0 to the visitors, who picked up their first win of the season at Foothills Athletic Park.
The lone goal came at the 43-minute mark when Portland jumped on a Calgary turnover at midfield and moved the ball into Storm territory. Fadi Afash, the Syrian soccer whiz, found the back of the net.
It was a controversial marker as many in the crowd, along with Storm coach Tommy Wheeldon, thought they saw a hand ball before Afash scored but no infraction was called.
"We're looking at hand ball and quite a few people saw it but the officials are against us here," said Wheeldon, whose side falls to 1-2 on the season.
But the bench boss was also unhappy with his team's performance for its first game back on the pitch since a 2-1 victory last week over the Seattle Sounders.
"I'm very disappointed in the performance. The effort's there but there was no quality of play and we resorted to their long ball which is not what we're about and I was very disappointed not to come away with anything," he said.
Calgary did have a couple of glorious chances in the first half, especially striker Sean Fraser, who took a cross from Jordan Gillespie but headed the ball wide on the far side.
"I was just trying to head it into the far corner but I got too far over and it spun off my head a bit," said Fraser.
"I was thinking too hard about where to put it and I changed my mind. That's what happens when you think too much about scoring."
Nicolas Reyes went in on a partial break soon after but the striker's shot went wide.
The Storm will be out for revenge tomorrow night in Portland.
Home-opener far from sweet
Storm plagued by familiar problems
Murray Rauw - Calgary Herald - Tuesday, May 13, 2003
There was a new look to the Calgary Storm lineup, but too many things looked the same Monday.
There was unpredictable weather, sparse attendance, some rather shaky off-field preparation and a dearth of Storm goals.
The Portland Timbers got a goal from Fadi Afash in the 44th minute and made it stand up as they defeated the Storm 1-0 as Calgary opened its A-League home schedule in front of about 250 fans at Foothills Athletic Park.
The loss dropped the Storm to 1-2.
Calgary coach Tommy Wheeldon didn't try to sugarcoat the loss. He felt his team took a step backwards from their level of play on the schedule's opening weekend when they split two games on the West Coast.
He said the effort was obvious, but his team seemed to lack intensity.
"There was no atmosphere in the stands, but we have to make our own excitement," said Wheeldon. "There was no quality of play. It's a loss when we should have won."
Cole Burgman, making his first start in the Portland goal, wasn't pressed in recording the shutout. He needed to make only five saves while eight other attempts missed the target.
Rookie Sean Fraser seemed to be set up perfectly at the 12-minute mark after a crossing pass from Jordan Gillespie, but he directed the ball wide.
The Storm also felt they were victims of poor officiating on the only goal of the game. They wanted play blown dead and a hand-ball called after the ball bounced off bodies before Afash deposited it in the net.
"It's all dependant on whether the referee sees it," said Storm player-assistant coach Conrad Chala. "If he can't see it, he has to leave it up to the linesmen and neither of them were there to call it. There is no question about it, from our angle, it was (touched)."
The Storm complaints were ignored.
"Quite a few people saw it," said Wheeldon. "Again, the officials are against us here. They say coaches have problems but they are in world of their own."
"We're not worried," said Chala. "Fom what we saw of their team, we feel we can beat them. One fluke goal and we had our chance. We didn't capitalize."
The opening results had to be disappointing for Storm owner Michael Vandale but he remained positive that better results would come Saturday when the El Paso Patriots are at Foothills Athletic Park.
Vandale was braced for a poor crowd. Monday night games are never popular and a series of showers prior to the game didn't help lure fans. There was not a drop of rain during the game.
Monday night, lineups weren't available for fans and substitution cards weren't ready for the officiating crew. A Portland radio announcer wasn't able to call the game back to Oregon because the booth wasn't prepared for a live broadcast.
The Storm hit the road Wednesday looking for revenge in Portland.
Calgary Loses Close One
May 12th, 2003
Calgary lost a close battle with the Portland Timbers on Monday night. In front of a sparse crowd at Foothills Park, the Storm missed some glorious chances and eventually fell to a late first half goal by Portland's Fadi Afash.
Match report by Jason Kmet to follow.
Timbers provide tall order for Storm
Graeme McElheran - Calgary Herald - Monday, May 12, 2003
Storm hoping to keep rollin'
By CAMERON MAXWELL, CALGARY SUN - May 12th, 2003
And Storm head coach Tommy Wheeldon hopes the win over the Sounders wasn't a flash-in-the-pan.
"The lads have just got to build and hopefully it wasn't a one-off against Seattle," said the bench boss, whose team is off to a 1-1 start in its second A-League season.
"If it is a one-off, it's going to be hard to take because we played really well against Seattle."
Portland had an 0-2 record heading into Vancouver last night and, while Wheeldon doesn't expect the Timbers to be a pushover, he does expect his side to open it up a bit for its home-opener.
"We're going to have to work as hard as we did against Seattle and we've got to be a bit more adventurous at home, obviously, because of the (fan) support," said Wheeldon.
Last week's weather forced the Storm indoors, except for a couple of practices.
Calgary's Brent Bachelau will miss the game because of a stress fracture in his foot, while Tommy Wheeldon Jr. will sit out his one-game suspension for a red card.
Wheeldon is unsure who will start in goal between Jamie Glasnovic, who was in net against Seattle, or Dave Wiebenga, who played in the Vancouver loss.
Gillespie Makes Team of the Week
May 7, 2003 - Courtesy of Calgary FC
Calgary Storm's Jordan Gillespie was selected to the A-League Team of the Week. Jordan's success came in part from scoring the opening goal in Storm's 2-1 win over the Seattle Sounders last Sunday at Seahawks Stadium.
Jordan, who hails from Saskatoon, currently attends the University of Alberta in the off- season while studying for a degree in the arts. At 6'0" tall and 175 lbs., Jordan has brought physical play to the team since joining Storm midway through last season after playing in the reserve team at the PDL level.
"I am very honoured to be selected this early in the season., It was a great win against Seattle, but one game does not make a season. We will have our work cut out for us this Saturday on our home opener, which is a rematch against Seattle. I am sure the Sounders, who had the best record in the league last year, will be out for revenge." Said Jordan.
Storm Sign Ian Dawes
May 6, 2003 - Courtesy of Calgary FC
Calgary Storm are pleased to announce the signing of 19 year old midfielder Ian Dawes to a one year contract.
Dawes, a 5' 8" 165 lb.midfielder, was with Liverpool FC youth system for the past 6 years before being discovered by Storm at the England Premier League Assessment Trials in February of this year.
" Ian is a crafty player who should be able to fit in well with us. We are hoping he will add creativity in the midfield as well as provide a few more goals for us." said Tommy Wheeldon, Calgary Storm Head Coach.
" I am pleased to be here. Tommy knew a few of the soccer people I knew back home and they spoke highly of him. I hope I can give the club a good run, although I sure hope the weather improves !" said Dawes.
The Storm are home for the Portland Timbers on Monday, May 12 at 6:30 p.m. Predicated on their success at the Bachelor Auction in the Women's Show, where proceeds went to Big Brothers and Big Sisters, The Storm will be hosting their first Ladies Night for the Portland game. All girls can gain admission for $5.00.
Storm Rebound to beat Sounders
May 4, 2003 - Seattle, Wash.
Calgary 2 - 1 Seattle
Calgary managed to pick themselves up and dust themselves off after being humbled the previous night by Vancouver.
The Storm put in a gutsy performance and managed to walk away with a 2-1 victory over the always-tough Seattle Sounders at Seahawks Stadium.
The Storm rode into the win column on the back of goals by Jordan Gillespie and Nicholas Zuniga. Gillespie's marker came in the 12th minute and Zuniga's came from the penalty spot in the 55th.
Seattle's Kyle Smith managed to score a consolation goal in the 90th minute and spoiled the shutout attempt of Calgary keeper, Jamie Glasnovic.
Like Calgary did on Saturday, Seattle had to play with 10 men for most of the game when Sean-Michael Callahan was red-carded for a wicked, studs-up tackle in the 22nd minute.
The Storm are now 1-0-1 on the season and sit third in the Pacific Division.
Storm Get Hit By Tsunami
May 3, 2003 - Burnaby, B.C.
Vancouver 6 - 0 Calgary
Last year, in the Storm's inaugural first match, they were humbled 4-0 by the El Paso Patriots. Calgary decided to go one (or two) better for this year's season opener.
The Calgary Storm were swamped and swept overboard by a vastly superior Vancouver Whitecaps team at Swangard Stadium on Saturday night.
First half goals by Tiarnan King, Jason Jordan, Oliver Heald, and Steve Kindel staked the Whitecaps to a commanding 4-0 lead at the break. Two second-half markers by Paul Dailly and Andrew Veer completed the rout.
The Vancouver faithful reported that Calgary looked disorganised and confused throughout the game and much of this can be blamed on lack of pre-season preparation. Vancouver's News1130 even stated that some of the Calgary FC player's jersey numbers did not match the numbers on their shorts. Fashion faux pas aside, it is clear that Calgary will have to get up to speed quickly if they hope not to repeat last season's dismal record.
If any silver lining can be found in this result, it is the fact that Calgary rebounded after last season's opening-night trouncing to defeat Minnesota in their next match. To do this sort of thing again, however, Calgary must beat the powerhouse Seattle Sounders in the host's impressive new venue on Sunday. This is a tall order, indeed.
Snow Greets Storm Recruits
After 473 appearances for Wycombe, scoring 9 goals, Couz was told by Lawrie Sanchez that his contract was not being renewed. Alerted to this, Terry Brown - who had been tracking Couz for over a year - immediately approached him with a contract offer at The Rec despite the interest of several other clubs. Enough said in terms of experience. Couz is the kind of battling player with that hunger to win that Terry wants at Aldershot. Couz adds yet more steel to the Shots defence and is equally at home in the centre or on the right. In joining the Shots he teams up with former Wycombe colleagues Dave Carroll, John Nutter and Lee Holsgrove.
For Ledgerwood, the busier the