Harrisburg City Islanders News Release -- www.cityislanders.com
Friday, July 27, 2012
HARRISBURG, Pa. - The Harrisburg City Islanders (7-5-6) will welcome the Los Angeles Blues (7-8-2) to Skyline Sports Complex on Saturday at 7 p.m. in matchup with playoff implications.
A rematch of the division semifinals from last season, Saturday’s game will be the first meeting between Los Angeles and Harrisburg this year, with both teams currently vying for a spot in the USL PRO playoffs. Harrisburg leads Los Angeles in the standings by only four points, a fact not lost on City Islanders’ head coach Bill Becher.
“Saturday's game will be the biggest of the year to this point,” he said. “L.A. is right in the mix with us and a few other teams fighting for a playoff spot. They are a very talented team and it should be an exciting game.”
After going through a three-game stretch without a victory – and outshooting their competition in each of the matchups – the Islanders earned a crucial three points in a win over in-state rival Pittsburgh last Friday. Bookend goals by the visiting Islanders were consolidated by a five-save effort by Nick Noble in the 2-0 win. Tom Mellor scored in the fourth minute off a Garret Pettis assist and Lucky Mkosana added his fourth goal of the season in the 85th minute off a rebound from a Sainey Touray shot. Despite being outshot seven to five – the first time in five games – the Islanders defeated the Riverhounds for the second time this month, ending their season series with Pittsburgh 2-0-1.
Los Angeles is coming off a two-game winning streak, with both victories coming against Antigua at the IMG Soccer Academy. Blues striker Brian Burke highlighted the games, scoring two goals in the 3-0 win on July 12 and notching an assist in the 2-0 victory two days later.
In their most recent contest, the Blues fought to a 0-0 draw vs. Guatemalan club CSD Municipal in a friendly at Cal State Fullerton Titan Stadium. Despite being an exhibition, the Sunday-night matchup was far from cordial as the game saw an ejection, a penalty kick and a several scoring chances all shift momentum in the tie.
The Blues will play consecutive days on their road weekend, first visiting Rochester’s Sahlen’s Stadium on Friday night before making the trip to Harrisburg on Saturday.
Harrisburg’s Andrew Welker looked forward to Saturday’s game, one with a “playoff-type atmosphere,” he said.
“I think the key for [us] is to match L.A.'s early intensity to the game as well as establish possession which will hopefully allow us to create high percentage scoring chances.”
Kickoff for Saturday’s game will take place at 7 p.m., with gates opening at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $14 for adults, $7 for youths and
$12 for senior tickets. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.cityislanders.org or call 717-441-GOAL.