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Ventura County Fusion

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Ventura County Fusion

Ventura County Fusion
Full name Ventura County Fusion Soccer Club
Nickname(s) The Fusion
Founded 2006
Stadium Ventura College Sportsplex
Ventura, California
Ground Capacity 5,000
Owner Ranbir Shergill
Head Coach Rudy Ybarra
League USL Premier Development League
2013 2nd, Southwest
Playoffs: Conference Semifinals
Website Club home page

Ventura County Fusion is an American soccer team based in Ventura, California, United States. Founded in 2006, the team plays in the USL Premier Development League (PDL), the fourth tier of the American Soccer Pyramid, in the Southwest Division of the Western Conference.

The team plays its home games in the stadium on the campus of Ventura College, the VC SportsPlex, where they have played since 2011. The team's colors are blue, orange and white. All home games are streamed live on the Fusion's YouTube channel, www.YouTube.com/VCFusion. All broadcasts are done in conjunction with CAPS TV in Ventura.

History

The Fusion entered the Premier Development League in 2007 as the first ever soccer franchise from the Ventura County area of Southern California. They played their first competitive game on April 28, 2007, beating fellow expansion franchise Lancaster Rattlers 2-1, and setting the wheels in motion for what turned out to be a promising first season. Four wins in their next five games - including impressive victories over traditional regional powerhouses Fresno Fuego and Orange County Blue Star - propelled the Fusion to the top of the table by mid-season. However, a spate of injuries began to take its toll on their roster, and by the middle of July the Fusion were stuttering towards the finish line, still in with a shout of making the playoffs, but being hampered by damaging defeats to Fresno and the Southern California Seahorses. By the time the final set of games came round, Fusion needed three points from their final two games to leapfrog the San Fernando Valley Quakes into the playoffs, but two consecutive ties - 3-3 with Southern California Seahorses and a hugely disappointing 0-0 with Los Angeles Storm - meant that they finished their debut season fourth in the table. English striker Mark Draycott was the team's leading marksman, notching an impressive ten goals, while Eric Avila and Chance Myers led the assist stats.

In the offseason, Fusion played against English Hammarby of the Swedish Allsvenskan, and Real Salt Lake and Columbus Crew of MLS. Fusion enjoyed a 1-0 victory over a Columbus side that included MLS veterans such as Frankie Hejduk, despite playing without all their college players, due to NCAA regulations.

Ventura started their second competitive season without the services of Chance Myers and Eric Avila, both of whom had been taken in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft, and Mark Draycott, who had returned to England to play for Swindon Supermarine. Despite this, anticipation was high that success would be swift, but they actually started the season sluggishly, losing two of their first four games, and not picking up a victory until their 3-0 triumph over Fresno Fuego in late May. This signalled an about-turn in form; Fusion enjoyed four wins in June, including an impressive 4-1 thrashing of Fresno Fuego away from home. Two more impressive victories - 2-0 over Southern California Seahorses and 4-0 over Lancaster Rattlers - kept Fusion's playoff run on course, but a shock 1-0 defeat to struggling Orange County Blue Star at home meant that they had to beat eventual divisional champions San Fernando Valley Quakes in their next game, or their season would be over. The Quakes won 3-2 in a bad-tempered game at Pierce College, and Ventura were left rueing another year of missed opportunities. They eventually finished the season in 3rd, just two points out of the playoffs; Hagop Chirishian was the team's top scorer, with 4 goals, while former Chivas USA midfielder Rodrigo López led with 3 assists.

On July 21, 2009 the Fusion played Burnley of the Barclays Premier League, however the superior class showed through and despite a spirited showing the Fusion went down 5-0.

2009 was a breakout year for Fusion. Having added former MLS players Ivan Becerra, Anthony Hamilton and Adam Smarte to the roster during the offseason, Ventura looked like a decent bet to qualify for the post-season for the first time. Things did not start well; they drew 2-2 with Bakersfield Brigade in their opening game of the season, and then were thumped 4-0 at home by the Hollywood United Hitmen next time out. The hammering, however, seemed to bring things into focus, and things improved sharply. From then on, Ventura embarked on an astonishing 12-game unbeaten streak that included six ties and hard-fought victories away at the Ogden Outlaws, a 3-2 revenge win away at Hollywood, and a 4-2 goal fest at home to the BYU Cougars in which Anthony Hamilton scored a brace. A nervy 1-0 loss to the Los Angeles Legends on the last day of the regular season meant that the Fusion finished third in the Southwest division, but sneaked into the playoffs by the back door as the lowest seed in the West. Fusion beat the Legends 2-1 in the first round of the playoffs thanks to early goals by Alfonso Motagalvan and Anthony Hamilton, and then defeated divisional champions Hollywood in extra time thanks to two late goals by Sam Myerson. For the national quarter finals Ventura travelled to Laredo, Texas, and dispatched Northwest division champions Kitsap Pumas 2-1 on an injury-time free kick from Rodrigo López, and then demolished the Bradenton Academics 6-1 in searing heat to qualify for their first ever PDL Champiohsip game. Ventura hosted the final, which was broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel, and snatched a victory from out of the hands of Chicago Fire Premier with an injury time winner from Alfonso Motagalvan, despite playing for most of the match with ten men.[1] Artur Aghasyan and Anthony Hamilton were Ventura's regular-season top scorers, with 8 goals each, while Hamilton and Hagop Chirishian contributed 3 assists apiece.

On July 15, 2014, Fusion played a friendly match against Rangers from Glasgow, Scotland, which the Fusion won 3-1.

Players

Current roster

As of June 5, 2011.[2]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
No. Position Player
0 GK Brian Rowe[3]
1 GK Sam Hayden[4]
2 DF Shawn Singh[5]
3 MF Abraham Villon
4 MF Ramone Palmer[6]
6 MF John Lopez
7 MF Andy Rose[7]
8 FW Raul Yepez[8]
9 MF Emigdio Ramirez
10 MF Danny Barrera[9]
11 DF Dane Hill[10]
12 FW Reed Williams
13 GK Max Young[11]
14 MF Sam Nicholson[12]
15 FW Callum Riley[13]
16 MF Artur Jozkowicz[14]
17 DF Michael Sten Jensen
18 DF Matt Wiet[15]
No. Position Player
19 FW Juan Gimenez
20 MF David Walker[16]
21 DF Michael Daly
22 MF Ivan Mirkovic
23 MF Mark Magee[17]
24 MF Jacob Hustedt[18]
25 MF Gabriel Gonzalez
26 DF Dillon Barna
28 DF Armando Guerrero
GK Dan Kelly[19]
MF Jose Rodas
DF William Rupert
FW Chris Delaigsia
MF Kaike Martins
FW Mathayo Huma
FW Jesus Araju
FW Sorush Sharif

Notable former players

This list of notable former players comprises players who went on to play professional soccer after playing for the team in the Premier Development League, or those who previously played professionally before joining the team.

Year-by-year

Year Division League Regular Season Playoffs Open Cup
2007 4 USL PDL 4th, Southwest Did not qualify Did not qualify
2008 4 USL PDL 3rd, Southwest Did not qualify Did not qualify
2009 4 USL PDL 3rd, Southwest Champions Did not qualify
2010 4 USL PDL 1st, Southwest Conference Semi-Finals 1st Round
2011 4 USL PDL 2nd, Southwest Conference Semi-Finals 2nd Round
2012 4 USL PDL 1st, Southwest Conference Finals 3rd Round
2013 4 USL PDL 2nd, Southwest Conference Semifinals 2nd Round

Honors

  • USL PDL Southwest Division Champions 2012
  • USL PDL Southwest Division Champions 2010
  • USL PDL Champions 2009
  • USL PDL Western Conference Champion 2009

Notable Matches

Head coaches

Stadia

Average attendance

Attendance stats are calculated by averaging each team's self-reported home attendances from the historical match archive at http://www.uslsoccer.com/history/index_E.html.

  • 2007: 1,176 (5th in PDL)
  • 2008: 1,217
  • 2009: 876 (10th in PDL)
  • 2010: 873
  • 2011: 1,116
  • 2012: 1,303
  • 2013: 1,282

References

  1. ^ Fusion overcome Fire for PDL title
  2. ^ United Soccer Leagues (USL)
  3. ^ Brian Rowe Profile - UCLA Official Athletic Site
  4. ^ http://ucsbgauchos.cstv.com/sports/m-soccer/mtt/hayden_sam00.html
  5. ^ Shawn Singh Profile - UCLA Official Athletic Site
  6. ^ Park University Pirate Athletics - Stats
  7. ^ Andy Rose Profile - UCLA Official Athletic Site
  8. ^ Men's Soccer Roster | CLU Sports
  9. ^ http://ucsbgauchos.cstv.com/sports/m-soccer/mtt/barrera_danny00.html
  10. ^ http://www.goslugs.com/teams/soccer/men/profiles/men/msoc10/dane_hill.html
  11. ^ Max Young Profile - Loyola Marymount Official Athletic Site
  12. ^ Player Bio: Sam Nicholson - UNLV Official Athletic Site
  13. ^ University of the Incarnate Word - Callum Riley - 2010 Men's Soccer
  14. ^ Artur Jozkowicz Profile - Loyola Marymount Official Athletic Site
  15. ^ Matt Wiet Profile - UCLA Official Athletic Site
  16. ^ http://ucsbgauchos.cstv.com/sports/m-soccer/mtt/walker_david00.html
  17. ^ http://www.missouristatebears.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=13800&ATCLID=204776972
  18. ^ http://www.gopoly.com/index.php?p=sports&id=29911&tab=roster&player=52831
  19. ^ Dan Kelly bio - CBULancers.com—Official Web Site of California Baptist Athletics

External links

  • Official Site
  • Ventura County FC
  • Official PDL site
  • Web Stream Link
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