Sockers looking to make Statements this Weekend
(February 23, 2017)
Statement games. That’s the motto from the Sockers’ coaches and players.
This weekend, the Sockers face both Southwest Division playoff teams, the Soles de Sonora and Atletico Baja. Saturday the Sockers will travel to Hermosillo to face Soles de Sonora then immediately come home to face cross border rival Atletico Baja on Sunday at the Valley View Casino Center at 5:05pm.
Offensive Firepower. Both Sockers opponents this weekend have it by the truckload. Frank Tayou leads Soles de Sonora with 49 goals and 15 assists while Christian Gutierrez has contributed 50 goals and 10 assists to Baja’s playoff season.
Saturday at 6:05pm PST, the Sockers will face the league-leading Soles in Hermosillo, Mexico in a much-anticipated rematch. They last squared off on February 4th with the Sockers falling in a heartbreaking overtime 8-7 loss. You can watch the action live on the new MASLtv Youtube Channel HERE!
“It’s a statement game. We didn’t like the way we lost there (Hermosillo, MX) last time and we’re out to prove we should have won that game. You can blame tired legs, the travel or whatever (for last time), but we want a positive result this time around.” –Chiky Luna, Director of Player Personnel
The Sockers will travel home immediately after the game in Hermosillo to face the other Southwest Division playoff team, Atletico Baja, on Sunday in San Diego. Midfielder Christian Gutierrez and his 50 goals lead Atletico Baja this season. It will be the first encounter between the two teams this season.
Baja presents one of the most potent offenses in the league, scoring 128 goals through 18 games. However, their defense has been rather porous, allowing 150 goals this season. The Sockers will look to exploit Baja’s defensive line early and often.
“This weekend is about making statements across the league. To show the Sockers can go to Mexico and win…then come back and put on another great display for the home fans. It’s a good playoff prep weekend.” –Felipe Gonzalez (Midfielder)
Sockers signed three former Baja players in the offseason. Midfielder Brandon Escoto has contributed the most with 12 goals and 7 assists. Eli Galbraith-Knapp has worked his way into the highly competitive 20-man Sockers roster. Arman Nadjafi, a promising young player, has been sidelined all season with severe illness but continues to motivate his teammates and the Sockers community #Sockersstrong. Donate to Arman’s cause here: https://www.crowdrise.com/lets-help-coach-arman-nadjafi
The Sockers will continue to use Goalkeeper Boris Pardo in Goal with Chris Toth in the Bahamas with the US Beach National Team. Pardo had an outstanding 38 save performance in Sonora on February 4th and will be looking to replicate that kind of imperious form versus the Soles this weekend.
Sockers head coach Phil Salvagio will have his full complement of players at his disposal for this weekend’s games, minus the aforementioned Toth. We can expect Salvagio to rotate his squad a bit with two tough games and hurried travel schedule.
The full playoff bracket and remaining clinching scenarios can be found on MASLSoccer.com/playoffs
The Sockers will also be hosting the 2nd Annual Celebrity Halftime Game on March 12th at 5:05pm at the Valley View Casino Center. Stay tuned for special announcements on Celebrities on social media @sandiegosockers!!
You can catch all the Sockers game live on MASLtv Youtube! Make sure to follow San Diego Sockers on social media @sandiegosockers on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat! #Questfor15