Major League Soccer Comes To LSU Today.
The New England Revolution of Major League Soccer play the New Orleans Shell Shockers in an exhibition set for 7 p.m. at the LSU Soccer Complex.
“This will be an incredibly hard game against one of the best professional outfits in the country,” Shell Shockers coach Kenny Farrell said in a news release. “The Revolution are a first-class team with players who have starred at the very highest level, but we won’t be over-awed and hope to put on a sizzling soccer spectacle for the Baton Rouge public.”
Ticket are $15 in advance and can be purchased at the Baton Rouge Soccer Association office located at 142 Lobdell Ave. Tickets are $20 at the gate.
Tonight’s contest will be the second Louisiana exhibition in four days for the Revolution, a 3-1 winner over Olimpia Honduras on Sunday at New Orleans’ Tad Gormley Stadium.
That match attracted 8,947 fans. Both matches are part of Miller International Soccer Series. The goal of the Miller series is to bring top soccer competition to Louisiana, including professional teams from Central America like Olimpia-Honduras.
“Our goal is to bring the highest level of soccer here to Baton Rouge and to Louisiana,” BRSA Executive Director Gary Buete said. “We’re excited about this and we see this match as a way to start doing that.”
The Shell Shockers are part of the Premier Development League that also includes the new Baton Rouge Capitals. Buete is the general manager of the Capitals, who open their season in May with games at Olympia Field.
Two notable players for the Revolution, forwards Taylor Twellman and Pat Noonan, are currently playing with the U.S. National team.
However, the list of players set to compete for New England is impressive. Forward Adam Cristman, previously of a member of the U.S. Youth National squad, scored two goals Sunday in New Orleans.
Defender Avery John plays the Trinidad-Tobago national team. Forward Shalrie Joseph and defender-midfielder Steve Ralston have international experience. Goalkeeper Matt Reis and defender-midfielder Joe Franchino are other Revolution players to note.
Defender Colin Rocke and midfielder P.J. Kee help lead the Shell Shockers.
“Our purpose is two-fold,” Revolution coach Steve Nicol said. “We certainly want to spread the good word about soccer. These matches are also important part of our preseason.
“We’re looking for consistency. We need to be able to play on a high level consistently. Matches like this will hopefully help with that.”
Ex-Baton Rouge High player Fred Mince is one of the Shell Shockers’ goalkeepers. Josey Portillo, a 16-year-old who attends Grace King High, is also on the New Orleans roster.
Revolution players and coaches spent part of Tuesday afternoon helping St. Bernard Project crews with efforts to rebuild St. Bernard Parish homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Buete said the Capitals had their first practice Monday at Independence Park. The Capitals host Dallas-Fort Worth for their home opener on May 12.