May 1, 2022: Massachusetts' long reigning Mengel State Champions (2018-present), Battery Park Gunners faced off against the 2021 regional runner up, NY Pancyprian Freedoms, in the USASA Region I Quarterfinals. Unfortunately, today, the Gunners were short numbers. When they sustained an injury to a key player in the first five minutes the game, they were forced to play out the remainder of the match with 10 men.
The Gunners held strong in the first half, with solid performance by their keeper and defensive line. They held the Freedoms to one goal for most of the half but went into halftime down 0-2.
In the second half, Gunners were able to create notable scoring opportunities. One was a well-placed corner that just went wide of the back post on a deflection. Another was a banger of a shot from the top of the 18 that just soared above the crossbar and the diving Freedoms' goalie. However, as the half wore on, the Freedoms' man advantage and substitutions for fresher legs forced the Gunners to concede three more goals.
It was a strong effort by the outmanned Gunners team. We wish their player a speedy recovery and thank them for representing Mass Soccer in their third straight USASA Mengel O30 Cup regional tournament.
NY Pancyprian Freedoms will advance to the semifinals where they will face Danbury CT on May 22, 2022.
By Joe Siciliano
(Joe - Thank you again for sharing your talent with us!)
November 21, 2021: USASA Mengel Cup State Final
Sporting Club Malden vs Battery Park Gunners
We kicked off the O30 Mengel Cup state final match in fantastic soccer conditions in scenic Backbay Fens at Roberto Clemente Field. Rookies to this cup, Sporting Club Malden, hosted the over 30 perennial powerhouse, Battery Park Gunners. Battery Park Gunners are a combination of the veteran players of the Bay State Soccer League's Broadway Gunners and the New England Over-the-Hill Soccer League (NEOTHSL) division 1 squad of the Hurricanes.
While the Gunners were looking to bring home the trophy for keeps (3 wins and it is yours), Malden was looking to make a name for their club, which is new to the Massachusetts soccer scene. Malden formed in spring of 2021 and entered their team in NEOTHSL's O30 division. They have successfully made splash in both the league and the Cup scene. We look forward to seeing them as they rise through the ranks of the NEOTHSL.
The Gunners came out to a fast start, applying lots of pressure on Malden's defensive line. In the 23', Gunner's Matt Nevin was served a beautiful ball up the middle and headed the ball over the approaching Malden keeper. One minute later, with another well placed ball over the middle between the Malden defensive line and the keeper, Aaron O'Neal was able to settle and finish the Gunner's second goal of the match.
The score remained 2-0, Gunners up, through the half. Then around the 66', Malden could no long hold back the offensive pressure of the Gunners. Chris Clark, Marty Galvin, Martin Blanc, and Dan Schultz added goals.
Tip of our hat to Sporting Club Malden on their first appearance in a state cup final and we look forward to seeing them back out on the pitch in 2022!
Congratulations to the Battery Park Gunners, our 2021 Mengel Cup State Champions. They will represent Massachusetts in USASA Region I competition next April.
Semifinal Round Recap:
In semifinal action, Battery Park defeated 2020 Co-Champions Safira 3-2. Battery Park's Matt Kelsey scored early in the match, but Safira responded with an equalizing goal by Ulisses Henrique da Paula in the 15' and then Joao Bosco Costa netted another in the 27'. Safira led 2-1 at the half.
In the 53' Matt Kelsey strikes again with the equalizer. Then in the 63' Chris Clark sent a beautiful ball up the middle and Marty Galvin scored the go-ahead-goal.
On the other side of the bracket, newcomers Sporting Club of Malden defeated another new team in our tournament, Holliston TK FC in a great display of scoring!
For Malden, it was truly a team effort with goals scored by William Langhauser, Nicolas Espiritu,Dario Lemos, Ivandro Carvalho, and Patrick Mullaney.
USASA’s Over-30 Cup Competition is named for Gerhard Mengel, a former National Cup Commissioner. Annually, Mass Soccer organizes a qualifier tournament to get a state champion which will represent Massachusetts in USASA Region 1 competition in late April- Early March, with Region I finals typically held in early June.
The USASA Region 1 champion will advance to compete in the Tournament of Champions in August.
Mass Soccer supports our state champion team with either travel or hosting stipends.