Improbable Remains Possible

The Scorpions look to have finally hit form, but while it's likely too little too late
by Chris Hockman   |   Friday, June 21, 2013

Defending The Fort - column on San Antonio Scorpions (SASFC) & the San Antonio soccer scene.

The San Antonio Scorpions have won consecutive games for the 1st time in the 2013 season as they finally look to have gotten on track, keeping their NASL Spring hopes alive.

Needing a win in every single match to close out the season to have any chance of claiming the title and a ticket to the Soccerbowl, they just held on against Tampa Bay, getting a 2-1 victory.

It was an impressive late show from the Scorpions with substitutes Hans Denissen and Edin Husic completely changing the game with plenty of chances.

FC Edmonton is in a similar position as the Scorpions, needing to win every game in what has been a tough season for the NASL's only Canadian team, which is going to struggle, losing a star player right before the season started.

Despite the win against Tampa Bay, there were still some issues. Estaban Bayona continues to struggle as a starter, regularly shooting astray and not having quite the impact that he had coming off the bench.

Meanwhile, both Husic and Denissen were left on the bench yet again, but they came on to the pitch and completely changed the match. It is clear that the Scorpions need to have these 2 starting for the club.

The other strange thing the Scorpions did last week was the signing of Eriq Zavaleta on loan from MLS' Seattle Sounders. On it's own, it isn’t a bad decision, but a loan for only 2 weeks has to be questioned.

It's not that Zavaleta was awful, but he was barely involved against Tampa, with his most notable effort being a missed 1v1, suggesting the Scorpions shouldn't have started the youngster.

There has been speculation that Zavaleta starting was a condition of the loan, but that would seem a strange loan for the Scorpions to accept, restricting their freedom to play their own team.

There will be 2 players back in contention on Saturday for the Scorpions that were absent in Florida, with Bryan Jordan and Walter Ramirez coming back in to contention.

That could allow several changes, but ones that are difficult for Scorpions manager Tim Hankinson, which makes them good problems to have.

It is imperative that Denissen gets back in to the side and he could form a front pairing with Jordan.

The Husic inclusion is a little more difficult, with the Scorpions midfield playing well, but with Jaavier Saavedra seeing so much work lately he could use a break and Husic could come in with Saavedra as a dangerous replacement.

Ramirez's last involvement for the club was a goal with an impressive cameo off the bench, which is where he should probably stay with his pace dangerous late on and limiting his time to get tired.

The equation for both teams is simple: They both need to win the match and will need Carolina to not win.

Prediction: This should be an open match, but a draw is bad for both teams. The Scorpions are the in-form team, and the timing of the match means the team won't know if they still have a chance so should go for goals. 3-1 Scorpions

NEXT UP: June 2 – San Antonio Scorpions vs. FC Edmonton, Toyota Field, San Antonio, TX. 8:30 p.m. EST, ABC San Antonio, NASL Livestream.


Univ W. Sydney & Youthworks Coll.
Club Domestic:
Houston Dynamo, San Antonio Scorpions, Austin Aztex
Club Foreign:
Central Coast Mariners
Originally from Australia found football (or soccer as you Yanks call it) a great connection in a new country. Freelance writer since 2005 covering Australian and US Soccer. Based out of San Antonio but can regularly be seen in Houston, Austin and Dallas.