Baltimore Blast

The Baltimore Blast is an American professional indoor soccer team based in Baltimore, Maryland, United States. The team is a part of the Major Arena Soccer League.[3]

Full nameBaltimore Blast
Nickname(s)Blast
Founded1992 (as Baltimore Spirit)
StadiumSECU Arena [1]
Capacity3,580
ChairmanEdwin F. Hale, Sr.[2]
CoachDanny Kelly
LeagueMajor Arena Soccer League
2018–192nd, Eastern Division
Playoffs: Conference Final
WebsiteClub website

The team has won 9 championships since it was founded in 1992. The Blast announced in August 2017 that starting with the 2017-2018 season, home games would be played at Towson University's SECU Arena. The Blast previously played at Royal Farms Arena in downtown Baltimore. Team colors are red and gold and their current head coach is Danny Kelly.

History

NPSL/MISL II/MISL III Years

The team was founded by North Carolina-based software executive Bill Stealey as the Baltimore Spirit at the end of July 1992 and joined the National Professional Soccer League. The team replaced the earlier Baltimore Blast, who folded along with the original Major Indoor Soccer League.[4] When the team was purchased by Ed Hale, a former owner of the original team, the Spirit were renamed the Blast on July 10, 1998[5] (Hale had the rights to the Blast name, hence the reason why the team decided to change its name) and joined the new MISL II in 2001. After the MISL II folded in 2008, the team announced it would be joining the new National Indoor Soccer League, which would later acquire the rights to, and became, the third version of the MISL.

Shift to MASL

One day after the 20132014 MISL Championship final, USL President Tim Holt announced a number of teams would not be returning to the MISL the following year.[6] The franchise announced on April 2, 2014, that it would not return to the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) after its contract with the United Soccer Leagues (USL), owners of the circuit, expired following the 201314 season.[7] It was officially announced the Blast would be one of six teams joining the Professional Arena Soccer League (later renamed the Major Arena Soccer League) in the 20142015 season.[8][9]

In their first two seasons as a member of MASL, the Blast would win 33 out of 39 games. They placed first in the Eastern Division in both the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 seasons, played in the 2015 and 2016 championship series and won the 2016 series over Soles de Sonora two games to none. The Blast repeated as Newman Cup Champions in 2017, again winning the final series over Soles de Sonora two games to one. In 2018, the Blast won their third straight championship, defeating the Monterrey Flash 4-3 in the final.

Attempted Launch of the IPL

On February 18, 2016, Blast owner Ed Hale announced his intentions to leave the Major Arena Soccer League and form a new league.[10]

On May 3, 2016, the expansion franchise Florida Tropics SC held a press conference stating they would be joining the IPL. At the press conference Ed Hale was announced as the chairman of the league, and Sam Fantauzzo, former owner of the Rochester Lancers, was announced as the first commissioner of the league. It was announced that the St. Louis Ambush, Baltimore Blast, and Harrisburg Heat had "resigned" from the MASL.[11][12]

On August 29, 2016, the Blast, Heat, Ambush re-entered the MASL with the expansion Tropics joining.[13] The move effectively folded the IPL as no teams remained in the league.

After rejoining the MASL, the Blast would go on to win their second Eastern Division championship and MASL championship over Soles de Sonora for the second year in a row.

Move To SECU Arena

The Blast announced in August 2017 that they would move from the Royal Farms Arena to the SECU Arena on the campus of Towson University, beginning in the 2017-2018 MASL season.[14] The move was the first time the Blast franchise played home games in an arena other than the Royal Farms Arena.

Players

201920 roster

Active Players

  • As of 27 November 2019[15]

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 William Vanzela
4 FW Andrew Hoxie
11 MF Tony Donatelli
12 DF Adriano Dos Santos
13 DF Jereme Raley
14 DF Ibrahima Keita
16 DF Sam Guernsey
17 FW Jamie Thomas
18 MF Mohamed Ndiaye
No. Position Player
19 DF Marco Nascimento
20 DF Mike Deasel
22 FW Juan Pereira
23 MF Jonatas Melo
24 GK Mike Zierhoffer
25 FW Daniel Peruzzi
28 FW Vini Dantas
90 FW Juan Galvis

Inactive Players

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
9 FW Sylla Salifou
15 FW Victor France
No. Position Player
30 FW Daniel Oliveira

Staff

Retired numbers

Player Number
Stan Stamenkovic #10

Hall of Fame

Position Person Inducted
Coach Kenny Cooper 2004
FW Stan Stamenkovic 2004
DF Mike Stankovic 2004
DF Bruce Savage 2005
N/A Earl Foreman 2005
FW Tim Wittman 2005
FW Joey Fink 2006
FW Dave MacWilliams 2006
FW Heinz Wirtz 2007
FW Domenic Mobilio 2008
GK Keith Van Eron 2008
FW Billy Ronson 2009
DF Richard Chinapoo 2009
FW Pat Ercoli 2010
GK Cris Vaccaro 2010
DF Doug Neely 2011
FW Dan Counce 2012
DF Rusty Troy 2012
FW Tarik Walker 2013
MF Denison Cabral 2014
DF Lance Johnson 2015
MF/Coach Danny Kelly 2017
GK Sagu 2018
DF PJ Wakefield 2019
FW Giuliano Celenza 2019

Notable former players

Year-by-year

Year League Reg. Season GF GA GF/G GA/G Finish Playoffs Avg. attendance
1992–93 NPSL II 27–13 309 256 7.73 6.40 1st American Quarterfinals 5,444
1993–94 NPSL II 26–14 322 293 8.05 7.33 1st American First Round 6,471
1994–95 NPSL II 23–17 317 307 7.93 7.68 3rd American First Round 5,733
1995–96 NPSL II 25–15 306 258 7.65 6.45 2nd American Division Semifinal 5,037
1996–97 NPSL II 20–20 260 258 6.50 6.45 2nd East Conference Semifinal 4,760
1997–98 NPSL II 12–28 250 300 6.25 7.50 3rd East DNQ 5,001
1998–99 NPSL II 19–21 271 290 6.78 7.25 3rd East DNQ 4,795
1999–00 NPSL II 26–18 339 275 7.70 6.25 1st East Conference Final 5,445
2000–01 NPSL II 22–18 300 260 7.50 6.50 3rd American Conference Final 5,376
2001–02 MISL II 18–26 265 274 6.02 6.23 4th MISL Semifinal 4,998
2002–03 MISL II 18–18 189 182 5.25 5.06 3rd Eastern Champions 5,559
2003–04 MISL II 25–11 241 192 6.69 5.33 1st Eastern Champions 6,330
2004–05 MISL II 15–24 205 238 5.26 6.10 7th MISL DNQ 5,752
2005–06 MISL II 17–13 184 168 6.13 5.60 2nd MISL Champions 7,005
2006–07 MISL II 15–15 154 150 5.13 5.00 5th MISL DNQ 7,449
2007–08 MISL II 19–11 186 135 6.20 4.50 3rd MISL Champions 7,230
2008–09 NISL 14–4 132 66 7.33 3.67 1st NISL Champions 7,534
2009–10 MISL III 11–9 105 97 5.25 4.85 2nd MISL Semifinal 6,259
2010–11 MISL III 15–5 131 93 6.55 4.65 1st MISL Runner-up 6,933
2011–12 MISL III 18–6 165 108 6.88 4.50 1st Eastern Lost Final 5,961
2012–13 MISL III 21–5 181 108 6.96 4.15 1st MISL Champions 5,544
2013–14 MISL III 17–3 147 46 7.35 2.30 1st MISL Lost Final 6,123
2014–15 MASL 18–2 167 69 8.35 3.45 1st Eastern Runner-up 6,201
2015–16 MASL 15–4 129 57 6.79 3.00 1st Eastern Champions 6,102
2016–17 MASL 14–6 113 69 5.65 3.45 1st Eastern Champions 6,299
2017–18 MASL 17–5 143 108 6.50 4.91 1st Eastern Champions 3,491
2018–19 MASL 17–7 144 103 6.00 4.29 2nd Eastern Semifinal 3,317
Total 504–338
Win % = .599%
6.72 5.65 61–34
Win % = .642%
5,701

Records

Statistics below show the all-time regular-season club leaders.[16] Bold indicates active Blast players.

CategoryRecord holderTotal
Games Lance Johnson372
Goals Denison Cabral445
Assists Franklin McIntosh176
Game-winning goals Denison Cabral32
Blocks Lance Johnson694
Shutouts William Vanzela9
Wins Scott Hileman, William Vanzela99

Head coaches

Arenas

References

  1. http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/soccer/bs-sp-blast-brief-0831-story.html
  2. Wells, Carrie (November 8, 2014). "'Hale Storm' reveals prominent former banker's CIA ties, two failed marriages". The Baltimore Sun. Baltimore, MD: Tribune Publishing. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  3. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-09-02. Retrieved 2016-08-30.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. Ey, Craig S. (August 11, 1997). "Can soccer succeed in Baltimore?". Baltimore Business Journal. Baltimore, MD: Advance Publications. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
  5. http://www.kicksfan.com/opponents/baltimore/new/index.htm
  6. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-04-15. Retrieved 2014-04-14.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. Graham, Glenn (April 3, 2014). "Seeking to become 'more relevant,' Blast breaks away from MISL". The Baltimore Sun.
  8. Graham, Glenn (November 7, 2014). "A look at the Blast's new league, the MASL". The Baltimore Sun. Baltimore, MD: Tribune Publishing. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  9. http://www.bizjournals.com/baltimore/news/2014/04/14/ed-hale-moves-baltimore-blast-to-professional.html
  10. Graham, Glenn (February 18, 2016). "Baltimore Blast owner Ed Hale plans to remove team from MASL, form new league". The Baltimore Sun. Baltimore, MD: Tribune Publishing. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  11. https://www.facebook.com/FLTropics/videos/1783778395175144/
  12. http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/soccer/bs-sp-blast-brief-0504-20160503-story.html
  13. "MAJOR ARENA SOCCER LEAGUE EXPANDS TO THE SUNSHINE STATE". Major Arena Soccer League. Archived from the original on 2016-09-02. Retrieved 30 August 2016.
  14. http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/soccer/bs-sp-blast-brief-0831-story.html
  15. http://baltimoreblast.com.ismmedia.com/ISM3/std-content/repos/Top/Media%20Guide%20comprehensive%2012-9.pdf
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