Crew News & Notes - June 22

Crew hosts Colorado in rematch of 2010 Eastern Conference Semifinals on Sunday

Emillio Renteria and Eddie Gaven celebrate in front of the Nordecke

Photo Credit: 
Jamie Sabau - Getty Images

On the heels of its thrilling 2-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo last Saturday (June 18), the Crew (5-4-6, 21 pts.) returns home to host 2010 MLS Cup-champion Colorado Rapids this Sunday, June 26, at 8 p.m., in a rematch of their Eastern Conference Semifinals series last fall. It is Red, White & Crew night and the Black & Gold will get a jump on Independence Day festivities with a post-game fireworks display.

The match will be televised live regionally on ONN with Dwight Burgess and Bill McDermott calling all the action and Katie Witham reporting from the sidelines. It will also be broadcast in high definition exclusively to Time Warner Cable Mid-Ohio customers in Columbus on Ch. 1311. The game can be heard in English on News/Talk 610 WTVN and on-line at TheCrew.com, with Neil Sika and Dante Washington behind the microphone, and in Spanish on La Mega 103.1, with Carlos Cordova and Benny Pietrangelo on the call. 

The Crew is coming off its first road victory of the season at Houston, and will carry momentum into Sunday’s game. Rookie forward Bernardo Anor assisted on the game winning goal by Andres Mendoza and then tallied his first professional goal, earning him MLS Player of the Week honors.
 
The Black & Gold’s record in all competitions against the Rapids is 11-6-8 with the Crew winning the last two home contests – 3-1 in the regular season last August, then 2-1 in the return leg of the ECS behind goals from Eddie Gaven and Robbie Rogers. The latter match forced overtime and a penalty shootout, which the Rapids won to advance. They ultimately defeated FC Dallas in MLS Cup 2010 in Toronto last November.

Colorado (5-4-7, 22 pts.) enters the match following a 3-1 home loss at the hands of the LA Galaxy last Saturday (June 18). It is led offensively by forward Conor Casey and midfielders Jeff Larentowicz and Jamie Smith who have tallied three goals apiece this season. Colorado will be without its assist leader, forward Caleb Folan (2), who received a red card in the match against LA.

Following Sunday’s game, the Black & Gold will begin its quest for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as it hosts the Richmond Kickers on Tuesday, June 28, at 7:30 p.m. The Crew returns to league play with a two-game road trip as it visits Dallas on July 2 and Vancouver on July 8.

COLUMBUS CREW vs. Colorado Rapids
Sunday, June 26 – 8 p.m. (ET) – Crew Stadium
National Television: N/A; Regional Television: ONN (in HD on TWC Ch. 1311)
Crew Radio: News/Talk 610 WTVN (English); La Mega 103.1 (Spanish)
Crew Webcast: TheCrew.com (English)
 
SUNDAY IS MILITARY APPRECIATION NIGHT FEATURING SKYDIVERS, 37th INFANTRY RECOGNITION
Sunday night’s game is also Military Appreciation Night and fans will be able interact with every branch of the military pregame on the plaza, where vehicles, drill instructors and a rock-climbing wall, among other things, will be featured. In addition, Ohio’s 37th Infantry Brigade Combat Team will be honored pregame, as it readies to deploy to Afghanistan. The deployment of about 3,600 soldiers is the largest mobilization for the unit since the Korean War in 1952. Finally, fans won’t want to miss a special halftime exhibition by the E Team Skydivers from Mason, Ohio.
 
CREW BEGINS QUEST FOR U.S. OPEN CUP VS. RICHMOND KICKERS ON TUESDAY, JUNE 28
The Crew begins its quest for the 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Tuesday (June 28) as it hosts the Richmond Kickers of USL PRO at Crew Stadium at 7:30 p.m. Tickets will be priced at $15 in all seating areas, and will go on sale to the general public on Thursday (June 23) at 10 a.m. A presale offering $10 tickets exclusively to Crew Soccer Nation members and Crew Youth Development families will precede the public on-sale. Parking will be free of charge for all ticket holders. Richmond advanced on Tuesday, with a convincing 4-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Riverhounds, also of USL PRO. The Crew won the Open Cup in 2002 and was the runner-up in two other occasions. In 1998, the Black and Gold lost 2-1 in overtime to the Chicago Fire and in 2010 the Crew was defeated by the Seattle Sounders 2-1.
 
KENNY CHESNEY COMES TO CREW STADIUM THIS SATURDAY
Award-winning Country music superstar Kenny Chesney returns to Crew Stadium this Saturday (June 25) at 7 p.m. Tickets for the event, which features special guests Billy Currington and Uncle Kracker, are still available at the Crew Stadium Box Office, all central Ohio Ticketmaster retail locations, via Ticketmaster phone at 1-800-745-3000 and on-line at Ticketmaster.com.
 
CSA 15/16s AND 17/18s BOTH ADVANCE TO DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY PLAYOFFS
Both Crew Soccer Academy teams advanced to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Playoffs and will travel to Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas, for matches starting on June 24. Both teams have been placed in four-team groups, with the top finisher in each group moving on to the fourth annual Development Academy Finals Week, which will be held from July 9-16 at three venues in Milwaukee. The 15/16s will face Seattle Sounders FC (6/25), D.C. United Academy (6/26) and Empire United (6/28). The 17/18s will play the Charlotte Soccer Academy (6/24), Dallas Texans (6/25) and Arsenal FC (6/27).
 
SIX CREW PLAYERS VYING FOR SPOTS IN STARTING XI IN MLS ALL-STAR GAME ON-LINE BALLOTING
Chad Marshall, Robbie Rogers, William Hesmer, Eddie Gaven, Emmanuel Ekpo and Emilio Renteria are the six Crew players selected to be on the All-Star fan ballot. A total of 32 All-Stars are named each year. Media, fans, players, the All-Star coach and MLS Commissioner Don Garber all contribute in the All-Star selection process. Fans can vote for the “First XI” online at MLSSoccer.com, via text message and, for the first time, via Twitter. For more information visit  www.MLSSoccer.com/all-star <http://www.MLSSoccer.com/all-star> .
 
WILLIAM HESMER AND BERNARDO ANOR NAMED TO MLSSOCCER.COM TEAM OF THE WEEK
Goalkeeper William Hesmer and forward Bernardo Anor were both named to MLSSoccer.com’s team of the week. Hesmer made some important saves to preserve his fifth shutout of the season and the first win at Robertson Stadium against Houston. Anor, who was also MLS Player of the Week, recorded a goal and an assist in his first MLS start and drew the foul that resulted in Houston’s Lovel Palmer’s second caution and subsequent ejection.
 
U.S. U17 MNT SHINES AT FIFA UNDER-17 WORLD CUP IN MEXICO
The United States U17 National Team began its quest for the FIFA U17 World Cup last Sunday (6/19), with a convincing 3-0 win over the Czech Republic. Crew Soccer Academy standout Andrew Souders, who captained the U17s in the CONCACAF Championships, was available for selection on the bench but was not utilized by head coach Wilmer Cabrera. The U17s return to action on Wednesday (6/22) vs. Uzbekistan, before closing out group play against New Zealand on Saturday (6/25).
 
CREW'S U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION PASSBACK PROGRAM CONTINUES ON SUNDAY
The U.S. Soccer Foundation, in partnership with the Crew and Major League Soccer, started collecting new and gently used soccer equipment at Crew Stadium through its Passback program at the Crew’s June 12 match and will do so again June 26 during its match vs. the Colorado Rapids. The equipment collected will then be distributed within our community, to programs including the Kids Inner-City Development Soccer (K.I.D.S.) League and the Near-East Side Inner-City Youth Soccer Program, so that others may enjoy the wonderful sport of soccer. Fans are encouraged to gather up those jerseys, shin guards, shoes, socks and soccer balls and bring them to the Crew's home matches in June to "Share the equipment. Share the Game!"
 
FORWARD JUSTIN MERAM ON CREWXTRA THIS WEDNESDAY
CrewXtra, the weekly show on ONN, will air this Wednesday at 11 and 11:30 p.m., and feature Crew forward Justin Meram, alongside Crew radio man Neil Sika, Shawn Mitchell of the Columbus Dispatch, and host Beau Bishop, as they discuss last week’s match against Houston and the upcoming match against Colorado.