San Diego Sockers Defeat NC Battalion in Pre-Season Charity Match
The San Diego Sockers took on the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) NC Battalion in a special preseason charity game last weekend in honor of the Challenged Athletes Foundation — and the arena soccer team showed off their prowess outdoors with a well earned victory. The final 3-1 score does not reflect the fast paced give and go action of the first half — which ended in a 1-1 draw.
San Diego Sockers goals were scored by Rafael Aguilar, Scott Martin and Anthony Medina. NC Battalion goal was scored by Rory Sutherland.
The match was well worth the price of admission with both teams playing an attractive, attacking and exciting style of soccer. There were multiple chances for goals with great saves and some spectacular missed opportunities.
The North County Battalion is one of the NPSL Teams in San Diego and while their players may be semi-professional, the team performed very well in the charity exhibition benefitting The Challenged Athletes Foundation®.
Hosted by NC Battalion, the match was held at Del Norte High School and brought the San Diego’s soccer community together for a worthy charitable cause.
It was an exciting match for both teams — Sutherland, who scored his first goal wearing the Battalion jersey told fans after the match, “I tell myself it’s going to happen before every corner kick. So happy I went back post because in practice I typically haven’t. Granted we, as a team, did not come ahead after 90 min, it was a personal achievement I’ve had set for myself and I hope that it inspires.”
The NC Battalion is owned by Jason Barbato and coached by Sergio Palafox. The team plays in the NPSL, the 4th division of the American soccer pyramid.
The San Diego Sockers new General Manager and former Sockers player, Sean Bowers was on hand watching the match and is eager for the new season to begin. “It is great to see the Sockers play an outdoor team,” said Bowers who — after commenting on the blazing sun and 90 degree heat — is also thankful his team plays indoors.
“It brings me back to when the Sockers played in the NASL before winning all those championships in the 80’s. Sockers were dominant back then and its something we want to get back to this season,” said Bowers. “What better way to re-start a winning tradition than to play against an emerging local team for a great cause?”
The parking lot was packed and the fans cheered throughout the match — yes, San Diego is a thriving soccer city.
Don’t miss the action — starting soon: The SD Sockers play in the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) and kick off their season on October 29 at 7:05pm in the Valley View Casino Center against the Turlock Express.