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Round 2: The Rematch for St Louis and Des Moines

 St. Louis, Mo. (May 20th, 2011)- The St Louis Lions hit the road for their second consecutive match against the Des Moines Menace on Saturday night. The Lions will then return home on Sunday to face Real Colorado in the Home Opener, 5:00PM at the Tony Glavin Soccer Complex in St Charles. Both weekend matchups are qualifying matches for the prestigious US Open Cup.

“This is a big weekend for us and all of our players are ready,” says Tony Glavin Head Coach of the Lions “We played well last weekend and we came up short but this weekend is a different game and we will go in and work hard to get a different result. We need the to win this game to stay alive in the Open Cup.”

The Lions dropped the season opener last Saturday night 2-1. The Lions came out aggressive in the game and went on top 1-0, on a head ball by Ernad Cavka at the 30 minute mark. In the second half the Lions gave up two goals in the eventual loss.  

After the game Saturday night the Lions will return home in preparations for their Home Opener. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:00PM at the Tony Glavin Soccer Complex.

“It’s the Home Opener and we can’t wait to play in front of our fans.” Said Jonny Brown Lions midfielder “I can’t wait to hear our fans cheering for us but first we have a job to do on Saturday night and we can’t think about that now. We need to win in Des Moines”

This is the sixth season for the Lions in the United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League. The Lions hold a 4-1 record on Home Openers.

“Every year we look to improve and this year I think we have stepped up our talent level once again. This will be an exciting season but we have a tough start in facing Des Moines twice and the Colorado. This is the Heartland Conference it is solid from top to bottom.” said Mike Poropat Assistant Head Coach of the Lions.    

The 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup tournament features teams from four of the five tiers of the American Soccer Pyramid. These four levels—Major League Soccer, United Soccer League’s Pro League, the USL’s Premier Development League, the National Premier Soccer League, and the United States Adult Soccer Association— each have their own separate qualification process to trim their ranks down to their final club delegations in the months leading up to the start of the tournament proper.

The event will feature 40 teams. Eight clubs from Major League Soccer will participate, six that automatically qualify based on last season’s league position and two that qualify through a play-in tournament. In addition, 11 USL Pro League clubs, 9 clubs from the USL Premier Development League, 4 clubs from the National Premier Soccer League, and 8 USASA clubs and will also qualify.

For information on 2011 Season Tickets, Group Tickets and Individual Game Tickets call 636-939-5151 or visit www.stllions

Press release from the St. Louis Lions.

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For AC St.Louis’ Brad Stisser, Soccer is a Family Affair

AC St. Louis forward Brad Stisser can truly say that soccer is a family affair.  His mom, Barbara, and dad, Scott met at Chico State in northern California where BOTH were soccer players.  Older sister Nellie also played,  and while Brad and his father were kicking the ball around at one of her tryouts, ” Lorne Donaldson’s son Julian saw me and invited me out to be part of their team. The rest is History, Julian and I played on the same team since we were about 10 years old.”  Thus began Brad’s long association with Real Colorado, where he was part of a national championship Olympic Development Program coached by Frank Kohlenstein and US World Cup star Marcelo Balboa.  Brad credits Lorne and Frank, along with coaches Jared Spires, Neil Payne, Rivers Guthrie and others as helping him with his development.  But soccer really is a family affair for Brad, and “all in all, I have to thank my pops for pushing me through all the tough times I had as an athlete and helping me achieve my dream of playing professionally.”                                                          

Brad (r) and friend

Brad attended Coastal Carolina College for a semester, but that didn’t work out geographically for the Denver area player, so he transferred to Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles in 2006.  LMU, famous nationally for their high-octane basketball team in the late 1980s that featured Bo Kimble and the late Hank Gaithers, had a soccer program that was struggling, but Brad takes pride in having a hand in their record improving from  3-16-1 his junior year to 7-8-6 as a senior.  Collegiate highlights include LMU upsetting then #2 ranked UConn before 6,500 fans in Connecticut and Brad’s free kick goal against New Mexico that also resulted in a 1-0 win.

Brad also played for the Real Colorado Foxes in the Premier Development League, along with his Denver buddy and ACSTL teammate Chris Salvaggione.  Brad won PDL Player of the week for the week of 7//4/2009 and also made the 2009 PDL  All Western Conference team.  He is a big proponent of the PDL, because, as he says “Playing PDL is a huge help in getting to the next level. Playing against professional teams getting used to a faster paced game and keeping you in shape till the college season starts is crucial to making it at the next level. It’s a good system for players that are trying to make it and I think the earlier you can get into it the better off you will be.”

Brad also trialed in Perth, Australia and Saarbrucken, Germany, and while at Saarbrucken he got an email about the ACSTL tryouts.  He immediately came back and attended the invitational tryouts, and was signed by the team  How is training and preseason going?  According to Brad, “The training sessions have been going very well. They are very intense and we are starting to gel as a team who just started playing together not so long ago. I’m very excited to see how this season goes with the group that we have here at AC. Every pre season game we show a little bit of progress on things we work on at practice and that’s a key.”  He has been playing mainly in the forward role, sometimes in a withdrawn role, and thinks of himself as a striker.

I asked Brad how he liked St. Louis so far.  Here’s the lowdown in Brad’s own words.  “I have to say that I am loving the St. Louis area. I’m living in Fenton with a family along with my teammate and buddy from back in Denver, Chris Salvaggione, and we couldn’t ask for a better set up. There is only a couple places besides Denver that I have enjoyed enough to live in and STL is one of them right up there. I will tell you though that one time up at the top of the ARCH is enough for my lifetime.” 
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