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MSSA 2018 Cups Summary

2018 Cup
Season Starts with Morton Cup in January

Schedules getting finalized but draw is complete. (19 December) The 2018 Maryland Cups will kick off in January with five competitions for the season. First in line is the Morton Cup with 10 teams divided into two groups. The top two in each will playoff for the title. It kicks off on 7 January. Later in the month we start the Rowland Cup, Maryland's oldest competition that was first played in 1914. This cup also features 10 teams split into two groups. The group winners play the final to determine who represents Maryland in the Werner Fricker Cup, the national amateur championship. In February, we have 13 sides in a knockout setting for the Stewart Cup, Maryland's amateur championship. The winner moves onto the US Amateur Cup for the Fritz Marth Trophy. We round it out with the Maryland Over-30 Cup and the Maryland Over-40 Cups. These winners progress to the USASA Region I qualifiers. Once again, the state has a very strong field of teams for its annual competitions.

Morton Cup Kicks Off 7 January
Match Day One Is On

Fields at Blandair Park have been cleared. (6 January) It will be a bit chilly but the fields have cleared and we will get our first match day started as scheduled. Catonsville FC Atlas will look to defend their title and take on Colombia FC at 11:00 at field 1. It will be followed in a battle between Old Baltimore Footballers and Starliners FC. At field 2 the 11:00 billing has Academy FC against Frederick City FC with DeMatha SA Starliners facing Steel Pulse FC afterwards.

Match Day One Completed
Cold One But Played

The 2018 Cup season starts on schedule. (8 January) MSSA Cup Commissioner Fran McGrath was undeterred despite some snow fall and chilly conditions. He made sure the fields were cleared and we got all four of our Morton Cup games played. It was not a good start for defending champion Catonsville FC Atlas who were defeated 2:3 by Colombia FC. The other Group A match saw Old Baltimore Footballers edge Starliners FC 2:1. Group B had two high scoring affairs with Academy FC plummeting Frederick City FC 9:2 while DeMatha SA Starliners also gave up nine goals against Steel Pulse FC in a 9:3 result. Match Day 2 has a doubleheader at Montgomery Blair High School starting with Colombia & Rockville SC at 11:00 followed by Starliners against Catonsville. At Martin Luther King Park, Frederick meets up against Brothers United FC and ends with Steel Pulse versus Academy. The Rowland Cup rolls off the following weekend along with Match Day 3 of the Morton Cup.

Rowland Group Play Kicks Off
Morton Two Rounds In

Maryland's oldest soccer competition starts its 104th season. (19 January) We get our second cup for 2018 off and running this Sunday with the Rowland Cup, Maryland's Open title that was first played in 1914. The winner goes through to Region I qualifiers to compete for the Werner Fricker Cup. Match day one action will be played at Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring and Blandair Park in Columbia.

We played our second match day last Sunday in the Morton Cup. Colombia FC leads Group A after a 5:0 thumping of Rockville SC. They meet Old Baltimore Footballers at Blandair for round three with Rockville going against Catonsville Atlas FC. Group B saw a 2:2 draw between Frederick City FC and Brothers United while Academy FC ran through Steel Pulse FC 7:3. Group leader Academy matches up against Brothers United and Frederick City battles DeMatha SA Starliners. The Morton games will be split between Blandair Park and Martin Luther King Park in Silver Spring.

Morton Past Halfway Point
Rowland Gets First Round Played

Christos set to defend its title. (22 January) We have two of our cup competitions kicking the ball on the pitch as the Rowland Cup got the first round played this past Sunday. This is Maryland's oldest soccer championship that was first played in 1914. The winner takes the state's Open title and advances to Region I qualifiers for the Werner Fricker Cup. In a replay of the last two Rowland finals, title holder Christos FC defeated rival Yinz United 3:1 and jump to the Group B lead. It is shared with World Class Premier Elite who edged NLS Graduates 2:1. In the lone Group A match, JA Raiders and IFK Catonsville FC played to a 2:2 draw. The second match day has the Graduates facing Christos, Yinz meeting Shooting Stars, Finito FC entering its first match against the Raiders and Catonsville taking on Izee Auto Body FC. Games will be played at Martin Luther King Park in Silver Spring and Blandair Park in Columbia.

The Morton Cup is three rounds done with the playoff field still pretty open. Colombia FC was slowed down by Old Baltimore Footballers in a 2:2 draw but continue to lead Group A. Rockville SC bounced back from their first loss to defeat Catonsville Atlas FC 3:1. Academy FC has a stranglehold in Group B as it took care of Brothers United 3:1. Frederick City FC won the goal battle against DeMatha SA Starliners with a 4:3 victory. The fourth Match Day will see teams head out to Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring and Blandair Park.

Sunday, 4 February - Rowland & Morton Cups

Games to be rescheduled. (4 February) Due to the inclement weather forecast for this morning calling for freezing rain in the area, all matches for the Rowland & Morton Cups scheduled for today, 4 February, have been called off. The games will reschedule as necessary and updated on this site.

Getting Back on Track
Rowland & Morton Cups Rescheduled

The cups will move on. (5 February) The weather was nasty yesterday and our Cup Commissioner, Fran McGrath, made the right call. He also has the games rescheduled, which you can find at the various tabs above.

The semifinals of the Morton Cup are pushed back one week. Academy FC is the only club who has guaranteed its spot in the final four. Steel Pulse FC & Frederick City FC will battle it out to figure who gets the other Group B place. Colombia FC & Old Baltimore Footballers can control their fates in Group A but Starliners FC still hangs in there with a shot to advance.

The Rowland Cup is not settled as only the group winners advance to the title match. This Sunday's schedule stays as originally set with yesterday's rain out moved to 18 February. All of the matches in both competitions will be played at Blandair Park in Columbia.

Morton Semifinals Set
Rowland Down to Last Match Date

Stewart cup to kick off next Sunday. (17 February) We have reached the halfway point of the cup season with the Morton Cup semifinals on tap and the winding down of the Rowland Cup group play. Blandair Park will be the venue for the semifinals of the Morton Cup commencing at 11:00 with Steel Pulse FC and Old Baltimore Footballers. It will be followed by Academy FC taking on Starliners FC. The final is set for next Sunday, 25 February at River HIll High School.

We have one finalist ensured for the Rowland Cup with Izee Autobody FC securing the top place in Group A. Christos FC can take Group B with a victory over Shooting Stars, who it plays on field #1 at Blandair Park in Columbia at 1:00. It is preceded by Izee against J.A. Raiders.

First Round action starts off next Sunday, 25 February, in the Stewart Cup.

It is Just a Delay
Morton Semi's Pushed Back

Stewart Cup will kick off as scheduled plus one Rowland match for Sunday. (20 February) We were on a pretty good roll with our cup schedules as the weather this winter only caused us minor headaches. Sunday was a perfect day to play but the Saturday snowfall meant the pitches were not. It will not deter our Cup Commissioner Fran McGrath as he put in a new plan to get the schedules reset.

We will play the Morton Cup semifinals this Sunday at Blandair Park in Columbia. Steel Pulse FC matches up against Old Baltimore Footballers at 11:00 at field #1. The other semifinal features Academy FC and Starliners FC at field #3, also at 11:00. The final will now be played on Sunday, 4 March at Martin Luther King Park in Silver Spring.

Only one Rowland Cup match on tap for Sunday as Christos FC meet Shooting Stars at Martin Luther King Park. A victory for Christos will send them to the final against Izee Autobody FC.

So that we do not fall too far off schedule, three first round Stewart Cup games will be played on Sunday. At Montgomery Blair High School, JA Raiders will face Greenbelt FC with Finito FC and NLS Graduates in the second leg. World Class Premier Elite is set against IFK Catonsville FC at Martin Luther King Park.

Rowland & Morton Finals Set
Stewart Cup with First Round Action

Christos aims for three-peat in the Rowland Cup. (26 February) We finish the month a little off schedule but with two finals to usher into March. Christos FC thumped Shooting Stars 5:1 to reach the Rowland Cup final where it looks to lift the trophy for the third consecutive season. Sitting in their way is Maryland Major Soccer League rival Izee Autobody FC who topped the Group A standings. The two will meet on Sunday afternoon, 4 March at Blandair Park in Columbia. The Rowland Cup is Maryland's oldest cup competition, first played in 1914. It is Maryland's open championship and the winner advances to the USASA Region I qualifiers for the Werner Fricker Cup.

The first title match on Sunday though will be for the Morton Cup, formed to honor of former MSSA Vice President Darwin "Lefty" Morton. For years, Lefty could be found on the touchlines (usually near the corner) of the various Maryland cup competitions. This competition is a state championship for teams not competing in either the Rowland or Stewart Cup. Old Baltimore Footballers and Steel Pulse FC played a thrilling 5:5 draw that was decided with the Footballers going through 4:2 on penalties. Their opponent will be Starliners FC who out scored Academy FC 5:3. The final is set for 11:00 at Blandair Park.

We also started the Stewart Cup, Maryland amateur championship, with three first round games. JA Raiders were eliminated by Greenbelt FC on penalties after the two sides drew 1:1. NLS Graduates shutout Finito FC 4:0 while World Class Premier Elite advanced to the quarterinals by the same score line against IFK Catonsville FC. Two more matches will be played Sunday with Greenbelt facing Yinz United in a quarterfinal round. The remaining first round match will feature Fighting BOB's and Shooting Stars. Both will be played at Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring.

Christos Three-peat Rowland
Starliners FC Lift Morton Cup

Both finals were tight contests. (5 March) The wind had its influence on Sunday but it did not prevent the teams showing their championship display. It was a cup final doubleheader at Blandair Park with Starliners FC and Old Baltimore Footballers facing off for the Morton Cup and then followed with a Maryland Major classic involving Christos FC and Izee Autobody FC for the Rowland Cup title. All four teams were worthy finalists with one match going to the wire.

The H.W. Rowland Challenge Cup is Maryland's oldest cup competition, established in 1914 . It was donated by Mrs. H.W. Rowland in the interest of association Football with the winner crowned as Maryland's open champion and the advancing to the USASA Region I qualifiers for the Werner Fricker Cup. Izee got off to a quick start but Christos tied it to leave halftime at 1:1. Izee scored in the 56th and then went up 3:1 a few minutes later. Christos fought back, first with a goal by Larry Cornish and then by Tyler Rudy to put the match into extra time. Neither side was able to score and penalties would decide the title. Cody Albrecht put Christos ahead 4:3 on penalties on the fourth round to be followed with the heroics from keeper Phil Saunders with the second big penalty save to ensure a third straight Rowland Cup triumph for Christos. In the Region, they head out to West Virginia for their quarterfinal round on 15 April.

The Morton Cup does not have the long tradition of the Rowland but was created in 2013 as state championship for teams not competing in either the Rowland or Stewart Cups. It was named in honor of former MSSA Vice President Darwin "Lefty" Morton who spent a lifetime coaching teams in Maryland and was usually found on the touchlines (usually near the corner) of the various Maryland cup competitions. The two remaining sides of the competition met on the first match day of group play back in January. Old Baltimore Footballers defeated Starliners FC 2:1 and ended up winning Group A. Both won their semifinal playoff matches and met again for the final. The Starliners reversed the scoreline for their fifth consecutive victory after the day one loss to capture the title. Congratulations to coach Khalil Lam and his crew in winning the sixth Morton Cup championship.

With two Cup completed, we now focus on the Stewart Cup, Maryland's amateur championship. We had our last remaining first round match between Fighting BOBs and Shooting Stars with the Washington Premier Side dismissing their opponent 6:0. The BOBs next meet league opponent Capital City FC in the quarterfinal. Yinz United are the first to reach the semifinals after a 3:1 victory over Greenbelt FC. They await the winner of Izee Autobody and NLS Graduates with the other quarterfinal round featuring Christos FC against World Class Premier Elite FC. Those matches will be played at Montgomery Blair High School and Martin Luther King Park, both in Silver Spring.

Stewart Semifinals Set
Maryland Major v Washington Premier

Each league with two sides left. (15 March) Yinz United booked their semifinal seat the previous week and we had the other three quarterfinal matches played this past Sunday for the Stewart Cup, Maryland's amateur championship. Two involved intraleague match ups with Fighting BOBs edging Washington Premier League rival Capital City FC 1:0 while the Maryland Major battle between Izee Autobody FC and NLS Graduates going 2:1 for Izee. The cross league match saw Christos FC shutting out World Class Premier Elite FC by a 1:0 scoreline. The final four will take place Sunday at Howard High School starting at 11:00 between Yinz and Izee Autobody followed by Christos against the Fighting BOB's. The title match will be on the 25th at River Hill High School.

We commence the Maryland Over-30 Cup on Sunday as well with Mando Ramos facing Catonsville Atlas FC, 3:00 at Howard High School. The winner gets titleholder Christos FC and will be part of the doubleheader with the Stewart Cup the following Sunday.

Christos Aim for Cup Treble
Stewart Cup Final Against Izee Autobody

Mandos Ramos sets up rematch of last season's O-30 final. (19 March) Two weeks ago Christos FC and Izee Autobody FC played a thrilling final in the Rowland Cup for Maryland's Open championship with Christos taking their third straight title in penalty rounds. The two sides meet again for Maryland's Amateur championship as Izee attempt to stand in the way of a third consecutive Stewart Cup. The title match is scheduled for 11:00 this Sunday, 25 March at River Hill High School in Clarksville.

Izee put away last year's Stewart finalist Yinz United 3:1 with two second half goals making the difference. Christos got off to a quick start against the Fighting BOB's with Josh Patterson setting up Jamie Merriam and then scoring himself for a quick 2:0 lead. Julian Sisman cut the deficit by one right before halftime with a wicked left footed volley. The BOB's took momentum in the 70th minute as substitute Patrick Tshiani drew it even. The match looked to go into extra time but Brian Graham struck twice in the closing minutes to end it at 4:2 and send Christos to the final.

Along with the Rowland & Stewart Cups, Christos look to make it a treble three-peat with the Maryland Over-30 Cup where they will meet a familiar foe Mando Ramos FC. The two met each other in last season's final and Mando Ramos return after defeating Catonsville Atlas FC 4:2. The Catonsville side fell behind 3:0 but then made a valiant comeback in the second half to fall short when Ramos added their fourth goal. The final follows that of the Stewart Cup on Sunday,1:00 at River Hill High School.

Christos Make It Three for Three
Stewart & Maryland Over-30 Cups Added to 2018 Tally

Next month the goal is the historic quadruple. (26 March) It was another tense final between these two Maryland Major heavyweights and once again, Christos FC got the better of their opponent, Izee Autobody FC, winning 3:2 to add the Stewart Cup to their trophy collection for 2018. The Stewart Cup is the second oldest cup competition in Maryland, established in 1932 to determine the state's amateur title. Winning it sends the champion to the Region I qualifiers to compete in the US Amateur Cup for the Fritz Marth Trophy. Christos won the national championship two years ago as they completed a national double along with the Werner Fricker Cup, the National Amateur Open Championship. Danny (a.k.a. @Messi_Baxter) Baxter put Christos ahead with a missile from 30 yards out 15 minutes into the match. He then assisted Josh Patterson a few minutes later to double the lead. With about 5 minutes left, Izee cut the deficit to enter the half only a goal behind. The second half saw a penalty awarded to Christos about 20 minutes in. Izee keeper Joel Isyaq saved the shot only to see Alex Bullington knock in the rebound for the 3:1 lead. With 15 minues left, Willy Kapawa converted a penalty for Izee to cut the lead once more. The side made a furious charge to draw it even but Christos held on to lift the trophy. They will host West Chester Majors of Eastern Pennsylvania in the Region I quarterfinals on 22 April.

The club did not end with only the Stewart Cup on Sunday as the Over-30 team defeated Mando Ramos FC 5:2 in the Maryland Over-30 Cup to make it a state cup treble. Five players got into the scoring actions starting with brothers Jon and Chris Ports followed by Tommy Schumacher, Lucio Gonzaga and Dan Lader. This is the third straight season in which Christos FC took the state treble to go along with the Rowland & Stewart Cups. Next on the plate is the Region I qualifier for the Gerhard Mengel Cup, the National Over-30 Championship. Christos will travel to Eastern Pennsylvania to play their Over-30 champion on 29 April. We have one more cup to go, the Maryland Over-40 Cup. Christos and Catonsville Atlas FC kick it off in the lone semifinal match on 8 April, 7:00 at Banner Field at Latrobe Park. The winner will challenge Mando Ramos FC for this inaugural title on 15 April. The winner advances to the Region I qualifers.

Christos Gunning for Quadruple
Club Starts Region I Qualifier this Sunday

Christos reaches fourth state cup final of the season. (9 April) Like that electric bunny, Christos FC keeps going and going and going. In the inaugural match of the Maryland Over-40 Cup, Christos trounced Catonsville Atlas FC 8:1 to advance to the final against Mando Ramos FC. Giuliano Celenza and Val Teixeira each contributed a brace. A number of the players who took part in the semifinal were part of the group that formed the club 20 some years ago. The title match will start 7:00 on Sunday evening at Banner Field at Latrobe Park with the winner moving on to the Region I qualifers.

The journey to the Region I qualifiers starts on Sunday with Christos heading out to Fairmont, West Virginia to take on Real VSA in the quarterfinal round of the Werner Fricker Cup. Christos lifted the trophy for the National Amateur Open Championship two summers ago and look to return to the national finals once again. The match is scheduled for 4:00 at the East-West Stadium in Fairmont. The following weekend, Christos hosts West Chester Majors of Eastern Pennsylvania in the Region I quarterfinals of the US Amateur Cup.

Christos Make One Semi, Miss Another
Over-30 Side Start Defense of Region Title

After making quadruple history, Region I play takes stage. (25 April) It is a busy spring for Christos FC with their three teams taking part in five competitions. The regular team has played already in two USASA Region I cup qualifiers and will head north on 9 May to take on Reading United AC in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. Two Sundays ago, Christos defeated Real VSA of West Virginia 6:2 in the Werner Fricker Cup led by Brian Graham's hat trick and a brace from Danny Baxter. Things did not go their way in the US Amateur Cup this past Sunday with West Chester United of Eastern Pennsylvania making their way to the semifinals 3:1. Christos will host Vereinigung Erzgebirge of Eastern Pennsylvania on 6 May in the Werner Fricker Cup semifinal.

The Over-30 team heads up to Oakford, Pennsylvania on Sunday where they meet the United German Hungarians in the Gerhard Mengel Cup. Christos won the Region I event last season and seek to not only defend that title but pick up their fourth national Over-30 championship. The match will be at 2:30 on the grounds of the UGH Club.

Christos FC made history in winning the inaugural Maryland Over-40 Cup and achieving a state quadruple. In a feisty match with Mando Ramos FC, Giuliano Celenza scored twice with Val Teixeira and Brian Lawson adding the other goals in a 4:3 victory. In another Mason-Dixon match up, Christos will host the winner of the Eastern Pennsylvania competition on 3 June for the Region I qualifer.

Christos O-30 to Host Region Semifinal
Shutout of United German Hungarians in Quarterfinal

USASA & USSF Open Cups are next on the schedule. (3 May) Christos FC hope to make another cup run in Lamar Hunt US Open Cup and it starts next week against Reading United AC. The match is scheduled for 7:00 at Alvernia University Stadium on 9 May. Prior to that will be the Werner Fricker Cup, the Amateur Open Championship, where Christos will host Vereinigung Erzgebirge of Eastern Pennsylvania on Sunday, 6 May at Anne Arundel Community College, 4:00. A victory will send Christos to the Region I final in June.

The Over-30 team came off a 2:0 win over the United German Hungarians in the Gerhard Mengel Cup. Lou Karko and Kevin Mezzadra scored in the first half and the defense shutout the German Hungarians in the second half. Quantum FC of West Virginia will make the trip to Maryland on 20 May to meet Christos in the Region I semifinal.

We encourage fans to come out and support Christos on Sunday afternoon and check the US Soccer site for live stream of next week's match.

Christos Reach Werner Fricker Cup Final
Reading United Opponent for Lamar Hunt Open Cup

Side looks to repeat last season's Open Cup run. (8 May) Christos FC returns to the final of the USASA Region I final in the Werner Fricker Cup. Two years ago, the team took the amateur double, winning both the Werner Fricker Cup and the US Amateur Cup. Last summer, Lansdowne Bhoys of Eastern New York stopped Christos at the regional final as they grabbed the double. Christos head out to the Ukrainian American Sport Center once again where they will meet Jackson Lions FC of New Jersey.

After a nil-nil first half, Christos defeated Vereinigung Erzgebirge of Eastern Pennsylvania 3:0 to advance to the final. Jamie Merriam scored the game winner on the 65th minute mark making a sharp turn just inside of the penalty area. Michael Scott converted a penalty and Cody Albrecht set up Brian Graham for a tap in in the infal minutes to put the match away. Phil Saunders provided his usual solid effort in goal for the shutout.

On Wednesday, Christos hits the road up I-81 for a 7:00 match up against Reading United AC in first round action in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. It starts 7:00 at Alvernia University Stadium. Check the USSF Match Center for a live stream. on 9 May.

Christos Going for Region Triple
Fricker, Mengel & O-40 Titles on the Line

Region I Finals 16 & 17 June at Ukrainian American Sport Center in Horsham, Pennsylvania. (1 June) Christos FC will once again make what is becoming its annual trek to the Ukrainian American Sports Center to compete for USASA Region I titles. This summer will be a new competition, the US National Over-40 Cup where they will meet West Chester United of Eastern Pennsylvania on Saturday, 16 June. On Sunday, it is first the final for the Gehard Mengel Cup, the National Over-30 Championship followed by the Werner Fricker Cup, the Amateur Open Championship. Winning any of the cups will send them to Sarasota, Florida in August for the national finals.

Christos Add Another Title
Werner Fricker Cup Returns to Maryland

Six national titles sitting on the trophy case. (20 August) Christos FC topped its cup season with another national title brought home, the Werner Fricker Cup for the Amateur Open Championship. The club last won the competition in 2016 and did so again in grand fashion for the second time. The National Finals were held at the Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Florida and included the Gerhard Mengel Cup, the National Over-30 Championship and the National Over-40 Cup.

Christos had two sides in those finals including its Over-30 team that was edged out by eventual champion Nashville United of Tennessee (Region III) 1:0. It did take third place with a 3:0 shutout of AAC Eagles of Illinois (Region II).

The open team added another trophy to its case with the Werner Fricker Cup. In the semifinal, it defeated Clockwork FC of North Carolina (Region III) 4:1. It then went up against local side Sarasota FC Premier of Florida (Region III) in a very competitive match between the two finalists despite the score line. Christos had their scoring boots with a brace from Brian Graham and goals by Oumar Ballo & Jamie Merriam for a 5:1 title win. It was the sixth national title for Christos. The club achieved a state quadruple last season winning the Rowland, Stewart, Over-30 & Over-40 Cups.




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