Rochester Rhinos News Release -- www.rhinossoccer.com
Thursday, August 30, 2012
ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- The No.2-seed Rochester Rhinos will host the No.3-seed Charleston Battery in a USL PRO Playoffs semifinal at Sahlen’s Stadium on Friday night at 7:35 p.m. The Rhinos match will be part of a nationally televised soccer weekend in Rochester. On Friday morning the gold medal winning United States Women’s National Team will hold an open training session at 11 a.m. at Sahlen’s Stadium. Gates will open at 10 a.m. for the free event, which is open to the public.
On Friday night, United States Women's National Team icon and Rochester native Abby Wambach will sign autographs from 6:15 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. for Rhinos fans. On Saturday afternoon the United States Women’s National Team will host Costa Rica at a sold-out Sahlen’s Stadium and in front of a national television audience on NBC at 2:30 p.m.
Rochester hosted Charleston at Sahlen’s Stadium three weeks ago when the Battery handed the Rhinos their worst home defeat in club history. Although the 4-0 result happened on August 11th, Rhinos coach Jesse Myers and his side have reason to believe that their semifinal on Friday night could turn out differently. 2012 Rhinos MVP JC Banks, 2011 Rhinos MVP Tyler Rosenlund, and former Scottish Premier League striker Tam McManus all missed the August 11th match due to disciplinary suspensions. Banks won the 2012 USL PRO assists title, and he finished with the second-best season in club history with eight assists. Rosenlund had two goals and one assist in 1,934 league minutes this season. McManus had one goal and two assists in 21 matches as a withdrawn forward. Outside of the result against Charleston, the Rhinos have been 5-2-1 since July 1st.
“We have a core group of players who have been playing very well together over the past couple of months.” Myers said. “We lost 4-0 last time we hosted Charleston, but some things happened in that match that you usually do not see. You usually do not give up three goals on five shots like we did in the first half. Fans who turn out on Friday night will see two of the top three teams in the league playing for the right to go to the USL PRO Championship Game the following weekend.”
The Battery had to defeat the No.6-seed Harrisburg City Islanders 2-1 at Blackbaud Stadium last weekend to advance to this week’s semifinal. Brian Ombiji opened the scoring when he finished an assist from Tom Mellor in the 16th minute to give the visiting City Islanders a 1-0 lead. Charleston star Nicki Paterson finished a spot kick in the 40th minute to level the score, and former Rhino Tony Donatelli finished an assist from rookie Jose Cuevas to give the Battery victory. Charleston goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra faced eight shots and made four saves to preserve the win for the home side.
Tickets for the Rhinos' game against the Battery are on sale and can be purchased at the Sahlen’s Stadium box office, by calling the Rhinos office at (585) 454-KICK (5425), online at www.ticketmaster.com or toll-free at 1-800-745-3000. Tickets start at $10 for adults and $8 for youth.