The San Antonio Scorpions earned their first win of the season last week against the coach-less Atlanta Silverbacks. After an early home defeat to start off the season, the Scorpions found their scoring way with a goal in each half enough to hold off the aggressive Silverbacks. Greg Janicki was surely feeling two feet taller after the recent birth of his son and easily headed in the first goal off a perfect set piece kick from Danny Barrera. The second came quick after the restart as halftime substitute Shaun Saiko was able to double the lead with only his second touch of the game. The last ten minutes of the match were nail-biting after Atlanta came back within a goal but the Scorpions held on for the win.

With that win, the Scorpions stay within three points of co-leaders Minnesota United FC and today’s opponent the New York Cosmos. The Cosmos are undefeated in the last thirteen games after their win in Edmonton last week. FC Edmonton was able to limit the Cosmos attack to only one goal but it was enough. That’s five goals now for the Cosmos in only two games played with zero conceded.

The Scorpions have the offensive power to break through the Cosmos defense even though Tomasz Zahorski looks to be sidelined with an injury sustained last week. Losing Zahorski is a blow but the Scorpions welcome back defender Julius James from his one game suspension following the red card against Minnesota United FC. The added defense from James will be  a big boost to the back line.

“I’m there to connect and switch the play from left to right, keep things fluid and communicate. Mostly, I’m there to break-up [the other team’s] plays.” – Scorpions Defender Julius James

An interesting tidbit has developed for this New York Cosmos vs San Antonio Scorpions game. The trio of referees slated for this match will be in Brazil this summer as they look to officiate in the FIFA World Cup. NASL announced that referee Mark Geiger and assistant referees Sean Hurd and Joe Fletcher (who have taken charge of FIFA Under-20 World Cup, the Olympic Games, the FIFA Club World Club, and many MLS games) will be on the pitch for today’s game.

The Spring season format is a sprint to the finish line with the winner looking to host the Soccer Bowl Championship game. Every game and every point counts. The Scorpions must push for the win here as even a tie could be the difference on who wins the season. This is the third of nine games schedule before the World Cup break. It is time for Head Coach Alen Marcina and his team to show what the off-season has produced.

Once again the Crocketteers will be at our sponsor Lion & Rose Pub for today’s watch party. Kickoff is at 6pm but arrive early. Last week’s attendance spilled out of the dungeon and into the nearby tables with the Scorpions game occupying five tvs. New York Cosmos 3 – 1 Scorpions.

31