Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Los Angeles Soccer [Print without images]

Wednesday, July 27, 2011
LOCALS: Blue Heat's Fernandes is MVP finalist

By Scott French

Edite Fernandes made a profound impact this season for Santa Clarita Blue Heat, scoring nine goals, assisting four more and through her immense quality leading the second-year club to the W-League's Western Conference regular-season title.

The Portuguese forward was rewarded for her play Wednesday with the announcement that she's one of three finalists for the national amateur/semipro women's league's MVP honor, along with Colorado Rush forward Lindsey Horan, a U.S. youth national-teamer, and Ottawa Fury forward Mallory Outerbridge.

Fernandes was joined on the All-W-League team by teammate Cynthia Jacobo (Arleta/Granada Hills HS), Cal State Northridge's goalkeeper, and Pali Blues defender Sasha Andrews, a former Canadian national-teamer.

Jacobo is a finalist for Rookie of the Year, along with UCLA star Sydney Leroux, who leads Vancouver into this weekend's W-League final four in suburban Seattle, and Horan. Andrews is up for Defender of the Year, and Santa Clarita's Fabian Sandoval is one of three Coach of the Year finalists.

Fernandes, Jacobo and Blue Heat defender Kendall VanDine (Brea/Brea Olinda HS), and Andrews and fellow Pali defender Christie Shaner were chosen for the All-Western Conference team. So was Leroux.

Also on the all-league team are Horan, Outerbridge, Long Island defender Sue Weber, Ottawa defender Amanda Fancher and midfielder Jessica Shufelt, Toronto defender Christine Exeter, Vancouver midfielder Tiffany Weimer, and Atlanta midfielder Megan Tomlinson.

More on local clubs and players:

PDL: The Fresno Fuego (13-0-3) wrapped up the Premier Development League's Southwest Division title as Tyler Reinhart netted his 11th and 12th goals in a 3-0 romp over the Southern California Seahorses, then finished the regular season with a 3-2 win over the L.A. Legends on Jose Cuevas' 90th-minute goal.

The Ventura County Fusion (10-0-6), who will take on Northwest Division champion Kitsap Pumas (12-1-3), from Bremerton, Wash., in the conference semifinals, just played six games in a nine-day stretch, including friendlies against West Bromwich Albion (4-2 loss), New Zealand U-20 national team (2-1 win) and Argentina's Independiente (3-0 loss) and a closed-door match against Manchester City (2-0 loss). Good for business, good for relationships, not so good for postseason preparation.

Fuego star Milton Blanco won the W-League scoring title with 38 points (on 12 goals and 14 assists), two more than UCLA's Chandler Hoffman totaled for Orange County Blue Star.

WPSL: Three of the Women's Premier Soccer League's final four have real Women's Professional Soccer links. That's if you consider the Orange County Waves' link -- their leader is Abner Rogers, the L.A. Sol's head coach, and they've had talks with WPS about the league returning to the West Coast -- to be real.

The others, absolutely. Boston Aztec Breakers Reserves (8-2-3), who meet the Waves (12-1-3) in the first semifinal Saturday in Lisle, Ill., are the reserve side, as the name implies, for the WPS's Boston Breakers. The Chicago Red Stars (10-1-0), who face Tampa Bay Hellenic (10-2-1) in the other semifinal, are on hiatus from the top women's league but still, officially, part of WPS.

The Red Stars have four former WPS players: midfielder Amanda Cinalli, defenders Elise Weber and Jackie Santacaterina, and forward Michele Weissenhofer.

W-LEAGUE: Santa Clarita Blue Heat and Pali Blues are left to rue fine seasons that stopped short of the goal. Blue Heat (8-2-5) can look back on a regular-season sweep of the Vancouver Whitecaps, who won Sunday's Western Conference final with help from newcomers Kaylyn Kyle and Martina Franko, both Canadian national team vets.

Pali (7-1-6), a two-time W-League champ, lost only at Vancouver and would have made the playoffs had they won just one game that they tied.

NPSL: Not much more than 12 hours before the National Premier Soccer League's final four is scheduled to kick off in Madison, Ala., and the league still hasn't announced its pairings. Ought not be surprised -- the NPSL has a well-deserved reputation for disorganization.

The pairings have been made -- Hollywood United (13-2-1) will meet the Milwaukee Bavarians (8-2-2) in one of Thursday's semifinals, with top seed Erie Admirals (11-1-1) taking on Jacksonville United (6-4-0) in the other -- and the champ will be crowned Saturday.

USL PRO: Rochester's lead in the National Division is down to a point over Harrisburg after the City Islanders (9-5-6) scored in the 90th minute and stoppage to topple Dayton, 3-2, on Wednesday night. The Rhinos (10-6-3) are six points ahead of the L.A. Blues (7-4-6), which has three games coming up -- Friday, Sunday and Tuesday -- against Antigua Barracuda (7-12-1), which has lost seven in a row.

Best performances this week? For teams, got to go with American Division leader Orlando City (12-3-6), which beat English Premier League side Newcastle United, 1-0, in a friendly. Top player was Harrisburg's Andrew Welker, who scored a first-half hat trick in a 5-1 rout of FC New York. Welker has eight goals this year.

USL PRO
Last week's results (home teams listed first)
Wednesday

Pittsburgh Riverhounds 3 (Deighton 22, Yeisley 41, Severs 68), Dayton Dutch Lions 1 (van der Pluijm 11)
Harrisburg City Islanders 5 (Welker 10, 23, 44, Touray 54, Angulo 80), FC New York 1 (Arteaga pen. 63)
Friday
Richmond Kickers 1 (Gorres pen. 69), L.A. Blues 2 (DeLeon 5, 44)
Charlotte Eagles 1 (Moore 9), Wilmington Hammerheads 0
Rochester Rhinos 3 (Kissi 23, Tobin 35, Hoxie 90), Pittsburgh Riverhounds 0
Saturday
Harrisburg City Islanders 1 (Pelletier 19), L.A. Blues 1 (Rivera 43)
Dayton Dutch Lions 2 (Davis 19, Hall 45), Charleston Battery 2 (Paterson 13, 41)
Wilmington Hammerheads 3 (Mulholland 9, Budnyy 31, Wolfe 47), Charlotte Eagles 0

Standings
National:
1. Rochester Rhinos 30 points; 2. Harrisburg City Islanders 29; 3. L.A. Blues 23; 4. Pittsburgh Riverhounds 19; 5. FC New York 18; 6. Dayton Dutch Lions 8
American: 1. Orlando City 42; 2. Richmond Kickers 33; 3. Charleston Battery 31; 4. Wilmington Hammerheads 30; 5. Charlotte Eagles 25; 5. Antigua Barracuda 22

This week's games (all times Pacific)
Wednesday
Dayton Dutch Lions 2 (Kissinger 7, La Crone 29), Harrisburg City Islanders 3 (Touray 44, Hotchkin 90, Langley 94+)
Friday
Rochester Rhinos at Charlotte Eagles, 4 p.m.
Wilmington Hammerheads at FC New York, 4:30 p.m.
Antigua Barracuda vs. L.A. Blues at Cal State Fullerton, 8 p.m.
Saturday
Wilmington Hammerheads at Harrisburg City Islanders, 4 p.m.
Richmond Kickers at Pittsburgh Riverhounds, 4 p.m.
Rochester Rhinos at Charleston Battery, 4:30 p.m.
Sunday
FC New York at Dayton Dutch Lions, 4:30 p.m.
Antigua Barracuda vs. L.A. Blues at Norco College, 5 p.m.

NATIONAL PREMIER SOCCER LEAGUE
WESTERN DIVISION
This week's games (all times Pacific)
Thursday
League semifinals

Hollywood United vs. Milwaukee Bavarians at Madison, Ala., 2 p.m.
Erie Admirals vs. Jacksonville United at Madison, Ala., 4:30 p.m.
Saturday
League final
Semifinal winners at Madison, Ala., 4:30 p.m.

USL PREMIER DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE
SOUTHWEST DIVISION
Last week's results (home teams listed first)
Thursday
BYU Cougars 2 (Pugmire 23, Gee 83), L.A. Blues 23 0
Saturday
Ogden Outlaws 2 (Bukoski 40, Cornia 70), L.A. Blues 23 (Toth 46, Agha 49, Torres 81, Veroshi 90)
Southern California Seahorses 0, Fresno Fuego 3 (Cuevas 4, Reinhart 5, 44)
Ventura County Fusion 1 (Riley pen. 80), L.A. Legends 1 (Iniquez 89)
Sunday
L.A. Legends 2 (Velasquez 6, 62), Fresno Fuego 3 (Cignetti 49, M. Blanco 61, Cuevas 90)

Final standings: 1. Fresno Fuego 42 points; 2. Ventura County Fusion 36; 3. Orange County Blue Star 29; 4. Southern California Seahorses 27; 5. BYU Cougars 16; 6. L.A. Blues 23 14; 7. Ogden Outlaws 10; 8. L.A. Legends 5

This week's games (all times Pacific)
Saturday
Conference semifinals
Kitsap Pumas vs. Ventura County Fusion at Chukchansi Park (Fresno), 10 a.m.
Fresno Fuego vs. Victoria Highlanders at Chukchansi Park (Fresno), 12:30 p.m.
Sunday
Conference final
Semifinal winners at Chukchansi Park (Fresno), noon

USL W-LEAGUE
WESTERN CONFERENCE
Last week's results (home teams listed first)
Sunday
Conference final

Santa Clarita Blue Heat 3 (Franco 18, Beard 53, Fisher 56), Vancouver Whitecaps 4 (Leroux 34, Franko 45, Kyle 47, 88)

This week's games (all times Pacific)
Friday
League semifinals
Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Atlanta Silverbacks at Starfire Sports Complex (Tukwila, Wash.), 4 p.m.
Seattle Sounders vs. Ottawa Fury at Starfire Sports Complex (Tukwila, Wash.), 7 p.m.
Sunday
Third-place game
Semifinal losers at Starfire Sports Complex (Tukwila, Wash.), 1 p.m.
League final
Semifinal winners at Starfire Sports Complex (Tukwila, Wash.), 4 p.m.

WOMEN'S PREMIER SOCCER LEAGUE
PACIFIC CONFERENCE
Last week's results (home team listed first)
Saturday
Conference semifinals
Orange County Waves 1 (Omarsdottir 21), North Bay FC Wave 0
Bay Area Breeze 2 (Palmer 9, Hall 37), San Diego SeaLions 3 (Webber 8, 25, Yahr 8)
Sunday
Conference final
Orange County Waves 1 (Taylor 5), San Diego SeaLions 1 (Yahr 55), OT
+ OC Waves advance on penalties, 4-1

This week's games (all times Pacific)
Saturday
League semifinals
Orange County Waves vs. Boston Aztec Breakers Reserves at Lisle, Ill., 11 a.m.
Chicago Red Stars vs. Tampa Bay Hellenic at Lisle, Ill., 1 p.m.
Sunday
League final
Semifinal winners at Lisle, Ill., 11 a.m.