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UPDATED - January 29, 2007

A-League Archives Home

A-League 2003 Season

Eastern Conference

Atlanta Silverbacks - Charleston Battery - Charlotte Eagles -

Montreal Impact - Pittsburgh Riverhounds - Richmond Kickers

Rochester Raging Rhinos - Syracuse Salty Dogs - Virginia Beach Mariners - Toronto Lynx 

 

Western Conference

Cincinnati Riverhawks - Calgary Storm - El Paso Patriots

Indiana Blast - Milwaukee Rampage - Minnesota Thunder

Portland Timbers - Seattle Sounders - Vancouver Whitecaps

 

2003 Results - 2003 Stats

 

2003 FINAL STANDINGS

Before the season, Syracuse and Milwaukee Wave United were added.
Hampton Roads became Virginia Beach. 

During the season, Calgary was taken over

by the league and renamed Team Calgary.

EASTERN CONFERENCE
Northeast Division          GP   W   T   L   GF  GA  Pts
Montreal Impact             28  16   6   6   40  21   54
Rochester Raging Rhinos     28  15   6   7   55  36   51
Pittsburgh Riverhounds      28  15   4   9   50  41   49
Syracuse Salty Dogs         28  11   5  12   42  38   38
Toronto Lynx                28  11   4  13   29  38   37

Southeast Division          GP   W   T   L   GF  GA  Pts
Charleston Battery          28  15   7   6   41  27   52
Virginia Beach Mariners     28  14   5   9   51  34   47
Richmond Kickers            28  12   9   9   41  32   43
Charlotte Eagles            28   6   7  15   29  59   25
Atlanta Silverbacks         28   4   7  17   27  48   19

WESTERN CONFERENCE
Central Division            GP   W   T   L   GF  GA  Pts
Milwaukee Wave United       28  18   0  10   61  32   54
Minnesota Thunder           28  17   2   9   44  28   53
El Paso Patriots            28   9   3  16   33  48   30
Cincinnati Riverhawks       28   9   0  19   38  62   24
Indiana Blast               28   3   2  23   28  67   11

Pacific Division            GP   W   T   L   GF  GA  Pts
Seattle Sounders            28  16   5   7   45  24   53
Vancouver Whitecaps         28  15   7   6   45  24   52
Portland Timbers            28  15   2  11   39  33   47
Calgary Storm               28   4   3  21   16  62   15

After the season, Pittsburgh and Charlotte were demoted to the PSL. 

El Paso and Indiana were demoted to the PDL.

Cincinnati and Calgary folded.

2004 PLAYOFFS

*-after sudden death extra time

Eastern Conference Semifinals

Sept. 5  Virginia Beach  0-1  Charleston

Sept. 7  Charleston      4-1  Virginia Beach

Charleston advance on 4-2 aggregate

 

Sept. 5  Rochester  2-1  Montreal

Sept. 7  Montreal   0-0  Rochester

Rochester advance on 2-1 aggregate

 

Eastern Conference Final

Sept. 12 Rochester  0-0  Charleston

Sept. 14 Charleston 1-0  Rochester

Charleston advance on 1-0 aggregate

 

Western Conference Semifinals

Sept. 5  Milwaukee  1-0  Minnesota

Sept. 7  Minnesota  2-0* Milwaukee

Minnesota advance on 2-0 aggregate

 

Sept. 5  Seattle    0-0  Vancouver

Sept. 7  Vancouver  1-1* Seattle

Aggregate drawn 1-1

Seattle advance on penalty kicks, 6-5

 

Western Conference Final

Sept. 12 Seattle    0-1  Minnesota

Sept. 14 Minnesota  1-0  Seattle

Minnesota advance on 2-0 aggregate

 

A-League Championship

Sept. 20 Charleston 3-0  Minnesota

2004 Leading Goalscorers

Thiago Martins, Pittsburgh         22

Dante Washington, Virginia Beach   18

Doug Miller, Rochester             17

Byron Alvarez, Portland            12

Todd Dusosky, Milwaukee            11

McKinley Tennyson, Portland        11

Gregory Howes, Milwaukee           11

Josh Henderson, Charleston         10

Roland Aguilera, Virginia Beach    10

Kevin Jeffrey, Richmond            10

 

Goalkeeping Leaders                GAA

Greg Sutton, Montreal              0.73
Rich Cullen, Seattle               0.74
Michael Franks, Vancouver          0.77
Dusty Huddock, Charleston          0.86
Josh Saunders, Portland            0.90
Joseph Warren, Minnesota           0.97
Ronnie Pascale, Richmond           1.11
Billy Andracki, Rochester          1.25
Jim Larkin, Milwaukee              1.26
Joseph Larson, Virginia Beach      1.27

 

 

2004 A-League Award Winners

Most Valuable Player:  Thiago Martins, Pittsburgh Riverhounds
Goalkeeper of the Year:  Greg Sutton, Montreal Impact
Defender of the Year:  Gabe Gervais, Montreal Impact
Rookie of the Year:  David Testo, Richmond Kickers
Coach of the Year: Bob Lilley, Montreal Impact
 

2004 A-League First IX

G - Greg Sutton, Montreal Impact
D - Gabe Gervais, Montreal Impact
D - Danny Jackson, Seattle Sounders
D - John Wilson, Charleston Battery
M - Roland Aguilera, Virginia Beach Mariners
M - Marco Fernuzzi, Richmond Kickers
M - Andrew Gregor, Seattle Sounders
M - Ricardo Villar, Pittsburgh Riverhounds
F - Thiago Martins, Pittsburgh Riverhounds
F - Doug Miller, Rochester Ragin' Rhinos
F - Dante Washington, Virginia Beach Mariners
 

Home Attendance     G    Total    Avg.

Rochester          14  142,370  10,169

Montreal           14  101,307   7,236

Syracuse           14   96,385   6,885

Portland           14   82,193   5,871

Vancouver          14   60,085   4,292

Minnesota          14   57,411   4,101

Charleston         14   55,572   3,969

Seattle            14   47,000   3,357

Toronto            14   37,112   2,651

Indiana            14   34,505   2,465

Richmond           14   31,816   2,273

Milwaukee          14   29,186   2,085

Pittsburgh         14   24,959   1,783

Virginia Beach     14   23,760   1,697

Atlanta            14   16,803   1,200

Calgary            14   14,975   1,070

El Paso            14   13,801     986

Charlotte          14   12,679     906

Cincinnati         14    5,272     377

LEAGUE            266  887,191   3,335

Overview of the 2003 A-League Season - From the American Soccer History Archives

The defunct Milwaukee Rampage were replaced by the MISL's Milwaukee Wave who joined the circuit as Milwaukee Wave United. The Syracuse Salty Dogs were added as an expansion team. Seattle and El Paso made risky moves, jumping to large football stadiums, as the A-League endeavored to resolve some stadium issues in various cities. The Sounders had drawn 25,000 fans to a game in 2002, the first game ever played at the new Seahawks Stadium and they didn't mind getting away from the atrocious Astroturf field at Memorial Stadium. Several teams were sharing stadia with minor league baseball franchises, but Rochester began construction on their new 17,500 seat PaeTec Park, which they expected to sell out.

Some major players made their way down from MLS this season. Jamar Beasley, DeMarcus's older brother, signed with the Charleston Battery, longtime Nat Roy Lassiter signed with the newly renamed Virginia Mariners, MISL indoor scoring leader Dino Delevski signed with Milwaukee Wave United, and Rochester signed Mac Cozier. Danny Jackson, late of NCAA Champ North Carolina landed a spot with the Seattle Sounders.

The big winner of 2003 was the Montreal Impact, who came out on top of the Northeast division after a season-long three way battle with Rochester and Pittsburgh. Throughout the league, there was remarkably little change in the standings as compared with 2002. The strong remained strong and the weak didn't progress. But there were close and exciting races in all divisions. the new Milwaukee franchise picked up where the Rampage left off, to beast Minnesota by a single point, whole Charleston and Seattle repeated their triumphs of a year ago. The one big success story was the remarkable turnaround of the Virginia Beach Mariners, who were clearly reinvigorated by their new ownership.

The playoffs were closely fought. Charleston put an end to Virginia Beach's comeback, and Rochester reclaimed the initiative with an upset series win over Montreal. Minnesota lost to Milwaukee 1-0 but then defeated them 2-0 in the 2nd leg to win on goal aggregate. Seattle played Vancouver through two draws before dispatching them 6-5 on penalty kicks. In the championship match, the Charleston Battery finally claimed their first title. The Battery had been the league's most successful team for the past six seasons, with regular season prowess and strong rosters, as well as notable success in the U. S. Open Cup, but always faltered in the playoffs. But with the addition of ex-MLS talent, including Ted Chronopoulos and Josh Henderson of the Richmond Kickers, the Battery was unstoppable this season, and finally won the gold.

Despite the slight loss of franchises, the A-League attendance jumped to 887,191 fans for an average of 3,335 per game, up from 3,034 in 2002. This was the result primarily of the continued support from Rochester (10,100 fans per game), and the amazing growth of attendance in Montreal and Portland. And the future looked very promising. Montreal was poised for even more growth in 2004, Syracuse debuted as the 3rd best drawing team in the league (nearly 7,000 fans per game), and a high degree of interest was greeting the expansion clubs planned for Puerto Rico and Edmonton. Add to this the expected opening of a 17,000 seat soccer-specific stadium in Rochester (which is expected to play to sellout crowds once it opens). It appeared the A-League was finally ready for sustained growth. The only source of concern was the continuing troubles of some weaker teams (Pittsburgh in fact was relegated to the PSL after the season).

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