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New England's ASL Teams Look towards Week 8

Looking back at week 7 and looking ahead to week 8 for New England's clubs in the new American Soccer League

Through two months of play in the ASL, the three New England clubs have enjoyed different degrees of success. Western Mass Pro Soccer led the league going into last weekend's fixtures while Rhode Island Oceaneers and Mass United FC only want one win between the two of them before facing each other.

The Rhode Island Oceaneers hosted Mass United FC on Saturday, October 4 in the ASL week 7. Playing at Bryant University in Smithfield, R.I., Mass United scored the game's first goal in the 51st minute as Fabio Barbosa tallied to take the lead early in the second half. Andres Perdomo leveled the match just 7 minutes later for the home side.

The Oceaneers now sit on 4 points with a record of 1-2-1 (W-L-T). Mass United FC also sit on 4 points with a 0-1-4 record.

The three players that Rhode Island's coaching staff thought were standout performers for them against Mass United were Isaac Addai, Andres Perdomo, and Taylor Backhaus. Addai played well in his first match with the Oceaneers.

Perdomo had previously scored the Oceaneers' game-winning goal vs EverGreen Diplomats on September 26. Against Mass United the former University of Rhode Island midfielder scored his team's only goal to cut a share of the spoils. The team's coaching staff said Perdomo "just keeps on finding the net and supplying leadership and skills to the young Oceaneers."

Backhaus is a former BSC CT Academy (Branford, CT) player in the USSDA and defender for the University of Bridgeport. "Strong in the air and flawless on the ground," the coaches said Backhaus, "controlled the defense and established himself as a leader."

Rhode Island next plays in October 11 when the team travels to play AC Crusaders in New Jersey. Mass United will go on the road to face EverGreen Diplomats in Maryland on Saturday.

The Oceaneers will look to carry momentum into their contest at Egg Harbor Township High School where they face AC Crusaders on Saturday. The Crusaders are one of two teams in the ASL owned by league president and CEO Matt Driver and operated by general manager Graham King-Charters.

On October 4, Western Mass won on the road against the Philadelphia Fury. The Fury are the other team in the ASL owned by Driver and operated by King-Charters. As coach of the Fury, Driver was unable to get a result against visiting Western Mass Pro Soccer.

At Washington Township High School in Sewell, NJ, Western Mass put the Fury under pressure early in the match. Despite starting the game well, Western Mass conceded the game's first goal in the 44th minute. The Fury's Seydou Ba chased down a long ball and chipped Warren Gross in WM's goal after a moment of defensive confusion for the visitors.

Late game substitute Eddie Bogle was able to tap home a rebound from an 84th minute shot by Will Daniels. Bogle's goal was his first of the season and came just four minutes after stepping onto the field.

The star of Western Mass Pro Soccer's early season success, Will Daniels, wasn't content with just providing an equalizing goal. A matter of seconds after the visitors tied the game, Daniels recovered possession at midfield, dribbled past two Fury defenders, and blasted a shot from 12 yards past Fury goalkeeper Chase Clement.

Western Mass Pro Soccer are first in the ASL standings with a record of (4-2-0), have conceded the fewest goals (2), and Daniels is the league's leading goal-scorer.

Western Mass hosts Ironbound Soul of Newark, NJ, on Saturday. That match kicks off at 7:00PM at Lusitano Stadium in Ludlow, MA.