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Lancaster Rattlers
Lancrattlers.jpg
Full name Lancaster Rattlers
Nickname(s) The Rattlers
Founded 2006
Stadium Antelope Valley High School
(Capacity: 3,000)
Chairman United States Gerald Brunner
Manager El Salvador David Lopez
League USL Premier Development League
2009 7th, Southwest
did not qualify for playoffs
Home colors
Away colors

Lancaster Rattlers is an American soccer team based in Lancaster, California, United States. Founded in 2006, the team plays in the USL Premier Development League (PDL), the fourth tier of the American Soccer Pyramid, in the Southwest Division of the Western Conference.

The team plays its home games in the stadium at Antelope Valley High School, where they have played since 2009. The team's colors are yellow, green and white.

The team also fields a team in the USL’s Super-20 League, a league for players 17 to 20 years of age run under the United Soccer Leagues umbrella.

Contents

History

The Rattlers entered the league in 2007 as the first ever soccer franchise from the Antelope Valley area of Southern California. They played their first competitive game on April 28, 2007, a 2-1 loss to fellow expansion franchise, Ventura County Fusion, and this unfortunately set the standard for a disappointing first season. Four straight losses - including a 5-1 hammering by Bakersfield Brigade - left the Rattlers languishing at the bottom of the table. Head coach Steve McKenzie was replaced half way through the season by Gary Brunner, the boss's son, but the change resulted in limited success; their first victory (2-1 over the San Francisco Seals) was the single bright spot of a summer which saw them lose eight of their next nine games, scoring 15 goals but conceding an astonishing 32. A difficult first season ended with the Rattlers managing a 2-2 draw against Los Angeles Storm, but finishing dead last in the division, six points adrift of their closest rivals, and second-worst in the entire PDL (only Cocoa Expos had a worse record). Martin Galvan was top scorer.

2008 wasn't much better for the team from Antelope Valley; they started the season with third new head coach, Costas Skouras, but the on-field products remained poor. After a 2-2 tie with Bakersfield Brigade in their opening fixture, the Rattlers went on to lose seven straight games, including a 5-0 hammering by Los Angeles Legends, a 4-2 loss to San Fernando Valley Quakes, and a 4-1 home defeat to Fresno Fuego. The Rattlers finally picked up their first win in a see-saw game against Orange County Blue Star which saw them emerge on the right side of a 4-2 scoreline, and they followed this up with a 2-1 win on the road against Bakersfield Brigade - the first time in franchise history that the Rattlers had enjoyed back-to-back victories. However, this proved to be the year's single bright spot. Coach Skouras was replaced mid-season by Javier Gallegos - the second time the Rattlers made a coaching change during their campaign - but they failed to win another game, ending their year with three ties and three losses, including 4-0 thrashing by Ventura County Fusion. The Rattlers finished the year dead last in the division for the second time, four points adrift of their closest rivals, Southern California Seahorses. Mauricio Harrie was top scorer, with three goals.

Lancaster had their best season to date in 2009. Under new head coach David Lopez - their fifth in three years - the Rattlers showed slow and steady improvement as the season progressed. The year began well with a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Legends thanks to a pair of goals from Mauricio Harrie, but quickly turned sour as the Antelope Valley side failed to win any of their next eight games. They let a four-goal lead slip in their agonizing 5-5 tie with Fresno Fuego at the end of May, and suffered several heavy defeats, including a 3-0 loss away to the Hollywood United Hitmen and 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Los Angeles Legends, who clearly wanted revenge for their defeat earlier in the season. However, sometime in the middle of June, something happened to the Lancaster team, and they began 'rattling' off win after win. They beat Ogden Outlaws 4-3 in a seesaw game in which Richard Galvan scored an 84th minute winner, comfortably knocked off Bakersfield Brigade 3-0 at home, fought back to tie 2-2 with Ventura County Fusion having gone behind twice, and pummelled Ogden for a second time, winning 5-2 on the road in the penultimate game of the season with two more goals from Mauricio Harrie. The rocky early part of the season meant that the best the Rattlers could do was 7th place in the division - but this was a significant improvement over previous years. Harrie was the team's top scorer with an impressive nine goals, and the fact that Moises Alvarez, Jose Garay, Christian Hernandez and Miguel Ibarra all score five or more goals each highlights their improved fortunes in front of goal.

Players

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2009 roster

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 United States GK Emilio Miranda (bio)
2 United States MF Sergio Cedano (bio)
3 United States MF Brandon Reyes
4 United States DF Hector Macias (bio)
5 United States DF Taylor Rivas (bio)
6 United States MF Carlos Aguilar (bio)
7 Mexico MF Jesus Lopez (bio)
8 United States DF Matthew Garrett
9 United States MF Miguel Ibarra (bio)
10 United States FW Mauricio Harrie (bio)
11 United States FW Martin Galvan (bio)
12 United States MF Richard Galvan
13 United States FW Jose Garay (bio)
14 United States DF Osvaldo Lopez (bio)
15 United States GK Zach Brunner (bio)
No.   Position Player
16 United States MF Christian Hernandez (bio)
17 United States MF John Alex Caceres (bio)
18 United States MF Mario Ornelas (bio)
19 United States DF Billy Zaharopoulos
20 United States DF Brandon Howell (bio)
21 United States DF Bobby Reiss (bio)
22 United States MF Tony Hernandez
23 United States FW Jesus Salazar
24 United States MF Moises Alvarez
26 United States FW Juan Ruiz
27 United States MF Logan McDaniel (bio)
United States MF Joel Gunterman (bio)
United States FW Aaron Lott
United States DF Paul Lupanow (bio)

Notable former players

Year-by-year

Year Division League Regular Season Playoffs Open Cup
2007 4 USL PDL 10th, Southwest Did not qualify Did not qualify
2008 4 USL PDL 10th, Southwest Did not qualify Did not qualify
2009 4 USL PDL 7th, Southwest Did not qualify Did not qualify
2010 4 USL PDL

Head coaches

  • United States Steve Mackenzie (2007)
  • United States Gary Brunner (2007)
  • United States Costa Skouras (2008)
  • United States Javier Gallegos (2008)
  • El Salvador David Lopez (2009-present)

Stadia

Average attendance

Year Attendance Notes
2007 238
2008 155
All Time 197

External links


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