Monday, December 31, 2007

Auburn hopes to score with soccer

Yes, but will they eat at "Big Daddy's" before or after?

The December 31st Tacoma News Tribune talks about an Auburn city plan to build an indoor soccer arena in their downtown area.


Can soccer moms – not to mention dads and youths – help kick-start downtown economic development?

That’s the hope of Auburn city officials, who are looking for a qualified developer to build an indoor youth soccer facility on a block of downtown property.

The city already owns most of the block and is willing to sell or lease it.

The connection between indoor soccer and economic development seems logical, said Auburn Mayor Pete Lewis, who is leading the city’s efforts to revitalize the downtown area.

“We’ve been looking at indoor youth sports,” he explained. “We want something for kids downtown … that can bring soccer moms downtown.”

Soccer parents mean foot traffic, and downtowns thrive on people who shop, walk and eat there, according to Dave Baron, the city’s economic development manager.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Stars dimmed in home opener



It is a short 10-game season in the PASL Northwest Division, but for the Tacoma Stars it already looks like it's going to be a long year.

Tacoma had no defense in their road opener in December 1st, giving up 12 goals and drawing Troutdale 24-24 under the new MISL scoring system.

video

Last night the Stars played their first home match and were outplayed by the Wenatchee Fire who came away with a 13-9 win (6 goals to 4).

Tacoma never led in the game and two 4th quarter tallies insured the visitor's victory.

So what's 'wrong' with this year's Stars? Lots of new faces, and so far anyway, a tendency to give the ball away too easily and not help each other on team defense.

About 200 fans showed up at the Tacoma Soccer Center. Tacoma is now 0-1-1 after two matches with 1 standings point.

The Stars will try for their first win on Saturday January 5th when they host the Central Oregon Steelheaders at the Tacoma Soccer Center at 7:00 PM. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for kids, 10 years or under get in free.

A few more home opener photos from GOALTacoma.com start HERE.
View the Stars season schedule HERE.


Thursday, November 29, 2007

PASL brings Northwest rivalries indoors

Tacoma Stars season schedule here.

The 2007-08 Premier Arena Soccer League (PASL) season kicks off this Saturday night December 1st in the Northwest Division. The Snohomish Skyhawks will host the Seattle Wolves at 7:00 PM in the Soccer Dome. The Bellingham (PSSA) Rapids visit Wenatchee the same night, and the Tacoma Stars will open in Portland against the Bombers.

You can see the local schedule of home matches here. Here's the league division standings page.

The PASL NW has a new look this season, with new clubs in Seattle (Wolves) and Bellingham (PSSA Rapids). The other Washington clubs are the Tacoma Stars, Snohomish Skyhawks and Wenatchee Fire. Two Oregon clubs round out the division, the Central Oregon (Bend) Steelheaders and the Troutdale (Portland) Bombers.

The clubs are made up of players who have played pro, semi-pro, college or high-level amateur soccer.

Tacoma Stars lead the PASL NW in attendance.

Last season the division regular season was won by Tacoma. The playoffs went down to the wire before the Snohomish Skyhawks won a thrilling 6-5 match over the Stars before over 700 fans at the Tacoma Soccer Center. The last-second win sent Snohomish on to the international finals. The Stars would later join them after a club back east was unable to fill their spot. At internationals the Stars actually finished better that the Skyhawks.

This season all bets are off on how the division will end up. Unless, that is, you'd like to place a wager on the new Seattle Wolves, who will have 10 former or current Seattle Sounders on their roster.

The league venues vary in size and fan accessibility. The best venue for watching and enjoying a beer at the same time is definitely Tacoma's Soccer Center. The "Far Post" pub hangs over one goal and so can fans while holding their beverage of choice.

The Seattle Wolves will call Starfire home. It's a great venue in general but not the best for viewing the indoor game as a spectator. Mad Pizza and beer are nearby but must stay in the restaurant.

If you haven't been out to a PASL match then this is your year to give it a go. The prices are right and the action is fast-paced and at a high level.

The GOALSeattle.com local match calendar has match dates and also has links to the various venues. Take a minute to hunt down where the clubs are playing and look for more info.

Stars about to kick off at the Tacoma Soccer Center.

I will remain firmly behind the Tacoma Stars this year, despite the debut of a Seattle club chock full of Sounders.

The Stars are coached by Evergreen State head coach John Purtteman, who once played for the Seattle Seadogs. Their roster will be filled with local talent as they try to defend their regular season division crown.

PASL Links
GOALSeattle.com Indoor Soccer Forum
Seattle Wolves
Tacoma Stars
Bellingham Rapids
Snohomish Skyhawks
Wenatchee Fire
ArenaLeague.com
Tacoma Stars photos
Seattle Seawolves of 2006 photos

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Big Strides For Tide In Second Season

Ciaran O'Brien, All-League for TFC.
Jenni Conner/GOALTacoma.com photo.

It was a very memorable second campaign for Tacoma Tide FC. The club won 10 matches, qualified for the playoffs, drew nearly double the amount of fans they did the first (regular) season, and put a player on the All-League First Team.

Ciaran O'Brien came with new coach and papa Fran O'Brien. What a great package deal for TFC. Fran shaped up the squad and son Ciaran made PDL All-League with his dangerous free kicks, assists and team lead-tieing seven goals.

The Tide drew over 1,000 fans when they hosted the Seattle Sounders on July 7th. That total ensured a big jump in attendance from 2006. Even without the Sounders match the Tide had a big increase. Tacoma averaged 108 fans per match last year in PDL play, and 200 in 2007. Add in the Sounders match and attendance for all Tide matches was 2,604, an average of 289 and an increase of over 200%.

The Tide played exceptionally well at Curtis High School's Viking Field. Tacoma went undefeated at home in 2007 with 7 wins and 1 draw in league to go along with the 2:2 friendly draw with Seattle.

Home league highlights included beating the division champion BYU Cougars 2-0 and qualifying for the playoffs with a 5-0 thrashing of Yakima.

Hosting the Sounders brought more people out to see TFC and the club responded with a great performance, losing the win only in the last few moments and ending up drawing the USL-1 powerhouse Seattle team 2:2.

The Tide were disappointed to see their playoff run end early in Fresno against the Fuego. The match was 1:1 going into overtime before the Tide fell 4:1.

TFC are already looking forward to 2008. They'll be active in the off-season drumming up more support. Also watch for the debut of a new club crest that incorporates the name "Tide," and the birth of the first TFC mascot, tentatively called "Riptide."

We've updated our Tide Museum Page for 2007.

Friday, July 20, 2007

The "Beau Show" leads Tide over Spokane

#12 Beau Macaluso July 7th against the Sounders.
Jenni Conner GOALTacoma.com photo.

Stadium High School graduate and UW Husky recruit Beau Macaluso scored the tying goal and created the eventual match-winner when he was tripped in the box as the Tacoma Tide outlasted the Spokane Spiders 3-2 July 19th in the Lilac City.

The match was moved from Spokane Falls Community College's stadium to Plantes Ferry Park, a field without permanent seating. Fans brought lawn chairs and blankets to take in the action.

Tacoma took a 1-0 lead when Ciaran O'Brien's corner kick met the head of Scott Hand. The Spiders drew level at 1-1 with a penalty kick mid-half, and took a 2-1 lead into the locker room.

Macaluso drew Tacoma back at 2-2. The young forward then found a loose ball in the penalty area late on. He was brought down and O'Brien finished the deal by converting the penalty shot as the Tide won their 10th match of the PDL campaign. Tacoma are now W-10 D-2 L-3 with their final regular season match coming this Saturday July 21 at Abbotsford Rangers.

The PDL website currently lists the score of the match and the Tide record incorrectly. We'll trust TacomaFC.com has the correct details.

Tacoma will travel to play in a loser-out two day playoff tournament against the winner of the Southwest Division on July 27. Should the Tide win that one, they would advance to play the next night against the winner of the BYU-SW Division second place team match. Both matches will be hosted at the same venue, which will be announced as playoff positions are settled.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Tide countdown towards playoffs

Tide guard goal in Seattle scrimmage.

The Tacoma Tide are counting down to next Friday's playoff match (July 27).

Who they'll play and where it will be held are yet to be announced. This weekend's matches in the Southwest division will determine whether the Tide face Fresno or San Fernando Valley. Speculation is running high that Fresno Fuego would host the playoff matches if they qualify. The Tide would face the home team, and BYU would be on hand to face the other entrant. Winners would face each other the next night (July 28) in Fresno to see who advances.

The Tide have two road matches this week to end their regular season. They'll want to play well and avoid injuries to maintain momentum.

On July 17th the Tide scrimmaged with the Seattle Sounders at "Kids Day" for the Seattle club. Tacoma was challenged to get a full squad out to play Seattle, as many Tide players took a pass from the meaningless 60-minute scrimmage.

Seattle won the scrimmage 3-0. No Tide players were injured, and it was interesting to see a Sounder (Matt Fischer) suit up for the Tide along with several other unknowns.

Here's our photo gallery of the scrimmage, and another smaller one.

Tacoma is at Spokane July 19 and in Abbotsford July 21.

NOTES
A brief visit with Tide GM Mike Jennings before the scrimmage with the Sounders indicates that the Tide do have long-range goals to move up the USL ladder to a higher level if money and support permit it. Jennings remains concerned about the disconnect between the USL and MLS, however, as Tacoma look to the future and how they might fit in if Seattle gets an MLS team.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Tacoma gets its own soccer fan site


Welcome to GOALTacoma.com, or at least the blog part of this new website.

Hey Tacoma and South Sound, this one's for you.

Take a look around the new 'sister site' to GOALSeattle.com. You'll see history in the museum section. Years and years of Tacoma Stars and more.

You'll see a forum where you are invited to camp out and make yourself comfy while talking about soccer in Tacoma and beyond.

You'll see lots of photos of Tacoma's soccer teams both past and present in the galleries.

You'll see a link leading right back to this blog.

It's a cool time to be a soccer fan in Tacoma. Local colleges are always competitive, and the 2-year-old Tacoma Tide are buzzing with their first playoff season.

Indoors the Tacoma Stars live on at the Tacoma Soccer Center in the PASL, playing both summer and winter seasons before growing crowds.

Soccer is an awesome sport, and anyone who hasn't been to Tacoma lately should check it out and see what an awesome city it is rebounding into.

Volunteer content for this website is encouraged! Send stories, links, photos, etc. my way!

davidrfalk@gmail.com

Tide Clinch Playoff Berth

Yellow trumps Red in a cross-state showdown.

It's been a great year down south in Tacoma for the Premier Development League (PDL) Tacoma Tide. TFC finished an undefeated home season (7 wins, 2 draws) with a resounding 5-0 trouncing of the Yakima Reds July 14 at Curtis High School's Viking Field (aka the "Tide Pool.")

Tacoma scored early and late in the first half to take a commanding 2-0 lead. Late in the second half the flood gates opened and the Tide flowed through for 3 more markers.

Tacoma has clinched a playoff spot in only their second season in existence. The Tide will face the winner of the PDL Southwest Division in the first round. BYU clinched the Northwest Division title with a 2-1 win over Ogden Outlaws last night. A second-place Tacoma finish pits them against the top southern club. Currently the LA-area San Fernando Valley Quakes lead the Fresno Fuego by 3 points in that division race.

Using the video feature in my new camera I captured two of the Tacoma goals (watch video below). Both are of note. The first one (which made it 3-0 Tide) because of the reaction of the Yakima goalkeeper (who ate all the pies?) and the second (4-0 Tide) because it is yet another Ciaran O'Brien free kick spectacular. Curve it like Ciaran!




The first goal in the video is a breakaway featuring Chase Tangney crossing the ball to Rory Agu for the goal. Doesn't look offsides to me, but the Yakima keeper went beserk, and you can even hear his father coming down to the edge of the stands and yelling at the ref at the end.

Ciaran O'Brien has no less than FIVE free kick goals in 2007, and all have been things of beauty.

The Tide have two matches remaining in their regular season: at Spokane July 20 and at Abbotsford July 21. The Tide's first playoff match is scheduled for July 27 with the Southwest division winner, time and place to be announced soon.

During Friday's 2-1 win in Salem over the Cascade Surge Tide defender Steve Mohn suffered a fractured leg. He'll miss the rest of the Tide season and all of the upcoming University of Washington Huskies season as well. Mohn plans to apply for a medical red-shirt waiver, and also has hopes of playing for TFC again next summer.

Match Coverage:
GOALTacoma.com:
video highlights
GOALTacoma.com: photo gallery
TacomaFC.com: Tide Celebrate First Ever Playoff Berth!
USLSoccer.com: box score (eventually updated with goal scorers, etc.)
ElfElm.com: Hundreds of match photos!