Written by Steve Holroyd firstname.lastname@example.org, with supplemental materials by David Litterer email@example.com
For the first time in league history, no teams disbanded prior to the new season, although Washington did move to Miami. In order to further stabilize operations, the schedule was cut to 14 games, the shortest slate in league history.
One person who didn’t join Washington on its move to Miami was dominant Canadian international John Kerr, who joined New York Cosmos. Other additions to the Cosmos’ lineup included Josef Jelinek, who played for Czechoslovakia in the 1962 World Cup Final, and a young American citizen named Werner Roth. Atlanta entered the year with many of the same players they had carried since 1969, with the significant addition of striker Paul Child. St. Louis, on the other hand, supplemented its American roster with two seasoned British vets, defenders Wilf Tranter and John Sewell. Twenty-six Americans played that summer, 17 native-born and most coming from the St. Louis roster.
Behind holdovers Pat McBride and Willy Roy, the two Brits, and Austrian-born rookie goalkeeper Mike Winter, the Stars bolted out of the gate, going undefeated until their sixth match en route to a 7-4-3 record. New York, riding NASL leading scorer Randy Horton’s 9 goals, took the Eastern Division with a 7-3-4 mark.
In quick, one-game semifinals, New York ousted Dallas, 1-0, on a John Kerr goal, while St. Louis defeated Rochester on goals from Sewell and American Gene Geimer. The championship was played before 6,102 at the Cosmos’ new home field, twelve-thousand seat Hofstra Stadium on Long Island, New York. Goals by Horton and St. Louis player-coach Kazimierz "Casey" Frankiewicz sent the match even into its final minutes, and with four minutes to play Jelinek converted a penalty kick to give New York its first championship. All of the league’s award winners were present at the game: Horton (Most Valuable Player), Frankiewicz (Coach of the Year), and Winter (Rookie of the Year).
While Dallas missed out on repeating as champions, they did get the consolation of a 24,742 crowd at its new home, Texas Stadium, for an exhibition match against Moscow Dynamo, making its first appearance in North America. Goalkeeper Ken Cooper was outstanding against the Russians in a scoreless draw. Dynamo went to Hofstra to edge the Cosmos, 2-1, before a standing room only crowd of 13,205. League attendance made a significant rise, up 39 percent to 5,340 per game. St. Louis led the league in attendance with 7,772 fans per game, drawing 13,106 to a match with Montreal and 14,210 to a game versus Toronto. Toronto drew 7,274 per game, while New York averaged 4,282 per game.
A rather dubious milestone was erected as the league changed its offside rule midway through the schedule-on June 26-to put an offside line across the field, 35 yards from the goal line. Thereafter, no player could be offside unless he had crossed the 35-yard line; in the rest of the world, offside applied to the entire attacking half of the field. Players were slow to adjust to the new rule: on its first weekend, scores were 0-0, 1-0, and 2-0. Gradually, the 35-yard line began to open up attack possibilities. It also opened up the league to ridicule from the rest of the world; this criticism was somewhat muted at first, though, as the experiment did have the blessing of FIFA.
Nineteen exhibition games were played against isiting foreign teams this season, with Werder Bremen and Dynamo Moscow making qualifiable tours. Werder Bremen (Germany) defeated four NASL clubs in July, with victories over Miami (4-1), Toronto (6-0), Rochester (3-1) and Montreal (3-0). Dynamo Moscow came in August, holding Dallas to a scoreless tie before beating Atlanta 3-0 and the New York Cosmos 2-1. In other significant games, Arsenal (England) defeated Miami Toros 3-2, Santos of Brazil defeated Toronto Metros 4-2, Birmingham City defeated New York Cosmos 3-0 and Toronto metros 3-2, and Maccabi Tel Aviv lost to Toronto 1-0 and the Cosmos 5-2.
Prior to the season, the NASL staged its first annual college draft, hoping that collegiate players might hasten the "Americanization" of the league. Barry Barto wound up being the only significant contributor from the Class of ‘72 after being drafted by Montreal in the third round. The first ever pick was Alain Maca, drafted by Miami. The son of Joe Maca, a player on the 1950 U.S. team that upset England in the World Cup, the younger Maca would play four years in the league as a defender. Meanwhile, Dallas Tornado showed a large measure of foresight by drafting a local player who played college ball at the University of the South. The boy was such a raw talent that he was kept on the reserve team for the entire season, but Lamar Hunt and Ron Newman insisted that he hadn’t been drafted for the publicity value of his surname: his name was Kyle Rote, Jr., and his father had been a famous (American) football player.
Final NASL League Standings, 1972 G W T L GF GA PTS % Att. Northern Division New York Cosmos 14 7 4 3 28 16 77 .642 4,282 Rochester Lancers 14 6 3 5 20 22 64 .535 5,505 Montreal Olympique 14 4 5 5 19 20 57 .464 2,308 Toronto Metros 14 4 4 6 18 22 53 .428 7,173 Southern Division St.Louis Stars 14 7 3 4 20 14 69 .607 7,773 Dallas Tornado 14 6 3 5 15 12 60 .535 4,093 Atlanta Chiefs 14 5 3 6 19 18 56 .464 5,034 Miami Gatos 14 3 3 8 17 32 44 .321 2,112 Semi-finals: New York defeated Dallas 1-0 St. Louis defeated Rochester 2-0 CHAMPIONHIP: New York defeated St. Louis 2-1 6 points for a win, 3 for a tie, 0 for a loss, and up to three bonus points for the first three goals. Leading Scorers GP G A TP Randy Horton (New York) 13 9 4 22 Paul Child (Atlanta) 12 8 1 17 Warren Archibald (Miami) 14 6 5 17 Michael Dillon (Montreal) 10 7 2 16 Willy Roy (St. Louis) 11 7 2 16 Kazimierz Frankiewicz (St. Louis) 12 5 3 13 Everald Cummings (New York) 13 5 3 13 Mike Renshaw (Dallas) 14 5 3 13 Leroy DeLeon (Miami) 14 5 3 13 Art Welch (Atlanta) 13 4 4 12 Willie Mfum (New York) 10 5 1 11 Carlos Metidieri (Rochester) 12 5 1 11 John Sewell (St. Louis) 14 3 4 10 John Kerr (New York) 14 3 4 10 Carlo Dell’Omodarme (Rochester) 14 1 8 10 Manfred Seissler (Rochester) 11 4 1 9 Josef Jelinek (New York) 14 2 5 9 Miguel Perrichon (Toronto) 13 0 9 9 Jose Moraes (Toronto) 12 3 2 8 Roberto Aguirre (Miami) 13 3 2 8 Jorge Siega (New York) 6 2 4 8 Gene Geimer (St. Louis) 14 1 6 8 Paolo Barison (Toronto) 8 3 1 7 John Fahy (Toronto) 10 3 1 7 Luiz Juracy (Dallas) 14 3 1 7 Renzo Selmo (Montreal) 14 2 3 7 Ken Wallace (Montreal) 9 2 2 6 Brian Talbot (Toronto) 10 2 2 6 Graham Souness (Montreal) 10 2 2 6 Pat McBride (St. Louis) 14 1 4 6 Leading Goalkeepers (940 mins. needed to qualify) Min Svs GA SO GAA Ken Cooper (Dallas) 1260 107 12 6 0.86 Mike Winter (St. Louis) 1260 122 14 3 1.00 Richard Blackmore (NY) 1260 129 16 3 1.14 Manfred Kammerer (Atlanta) 945 76 12 4 1.14 Dick Howard (Toronto) 1170 73 17 2 1.31 Sam Nusum (Montreal) 1260 113 20 4 1.428 Claude Campos (Rochester) 1133 64 18 4 1.429 Paulo Dias (Miami) 1033 124 22 3 1.92 Most Valuable Player: Randy Horton, New York Cosmos Coach of the Year: Casey Frankiewicz, St. Louis Stars Rookie of the Year: Al Miller, Philadelphia Atoms NASL 1st All-Star Team: G Ken Cooper Dallas Tornado D John Best Dallas Tornado D John Sewell St. Louis Stars D Peter Short Rochester Lancers D Willie Evans Miami Gatos M John Kerr New York Cosmos M Graeme Souness Montreal Olympics M Pat McBride St. Louis Stars F Randy Horton New York Cosmos F Paul Child Atlanta Apollos F Michael Dillion Montreal Olympics
Final ASL League Standings, 1972 Before the season, Northeast, New Jersey, Baltimore, Delaware, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Detroit, Pittsburgh, and St. Louis were added. Philadephia changed their name to the Spartans. Washington changed their name to the Cavaliers. G W T L GF GA PTS Northern Conference New York Greeks 10 8 2 0 31 7 18 Boston Astros 9 4 3 3 26 19 11 Northeast United 10 5 0 5 11 15 10 New Jersey Schaefer Brewers10 4 1 5 21 19 9 Southern Conference Philadelphia Spartans 10 6 3 1 25 12 15 Delaware Wings 10 5 1 4 15 16 11 Baltimore Stars 10 1 3 6 10 33 5 Washington Cavaliers 10 0 1 9 4 22 1 Midwestern Conference Cincinnati Comets 8 6 1 1 19 7 13 Cleveland Stars 8 6 0 2 23 10 12 Detroit Mustangs 8 2 2 4 13 19 6 Pittsburgh Canons 8 2 1 5 10 18 5 St.Louis Frogs 8 2 0 6 4 15 4 Chicago Americans (played a few games) (GF-GA stats not complete for Det, Pitt, StL) Playoffs: New York defeated Delaware 1-0; Philadelphia defeated Boston 1-0 Conf. Final: New York defeated Philadelphia 2-0 (OT) CHAMPIONSHIP Cincinnati Comets defeated New York Greeks, 2-1. St. Louis changed their name from Mules during the season. Detroit started the season as Detroit SC. After the season, Washington, Pittsburgh and St. Louis folded. Northeast became Connecticut. Leading Scorers GP G A Charles Ducilli (Philadelphia) 5 5 Joseph Oqnajac (New York) 5 4 Nelson Brazilia Cincinnati) 4 Serge Racine (Nor'East) 4 3 Antonio Harmon (Nor'East) 4 3 George Pulita (Philadelphia) 5 3 John Kostakis (New York) 5 3 Most Valuable Player: Ringo Cantillo, Cincinnati Comets Coach of the Year: Nick Cappuro, Cincinnati Comets
ADASL (Georgia): Emory (6-4-0-2-20-5-10)(Summer season)
Central New York League:Amsterdam (12-1-2-26)
Detroit Soccer League: Detroit Carpathia Kickers (13-2-1-65-14-29)
Keystone Soccer League (Pittsburgg): Canonsburg (16-0-0-32)
Maryland Major Soccer League: Dnipro (14-13-1-0-90-15-26)
Minnesota Soccer Football League: Maya SC (12-11-1-0-52-20-22)
Dr. manning Cup (New York State Champion): Istria S.C.
German-American League: Inter-Giuliana S.C.
National Soccer League of New York: Palermo (14-9-1-4-26-12-22)
National Soccer League of Connecticut: Hartford Hellenic A (17-11-4-2-54-24-24) (North); New Haven City (17-13-2-2-55-17-28) (South)
Ohio-Indiana Soccer Association: Dayton Edelweiss (16-13-2-1-66-17-27)
Western Michigan Soccer League: Kalamazoo (14-1-1-29)
Illinois State Governor's Cup: Chicago Lions
National Soccer League of Chicago Lions (Red Division), Maroons (Blue division); Indoor season: Lions
Chicago Latin American Soccer Assoctation: Ayutla
Great Lakes League (Chicago): Highland Parkers
Washington State Cup: Rainie Brewers
At the Munich Olympics, Bob Guelker met Dettmar Cramer who had been giving coaching clinics in the US. He gave some advice, and made connections. At the games, the US opened with an excellent, tough game against Morocco. Goalie Mike Ivanow was the star, with the game ending sa 0-0draw. Unfortunately, they could not repeat this success against malaysia. The US team played poorly, with a shaky defense and numerous errors. They lost 3-0.
Now virtually eliminated, the US faced a hopeless match against West germany, the unbeaten hosts. In a surprising move, Guelker sent a reserve team on the field, consisting of all the players who had not started in the first two games. His take was that they would need at least 7 goals and a win to qualify, which appeared impossible. So he let the others play and get a spot in the record books. The game was played before 70,000 in Olympic stadium at Munich on August 31, 1972. The home team consisted of amateur players from Bundesliga teams, and took only 2 minutes to score the first goal. Shep Messing, acting more as a practice target than a goalkeeper, held on valiantly, but the team lost 7-0.The game was an eye-opener in a sense, showing the Americans what world class soccer truly was, and the lengths the team needed to go in order to catch up. Ultimately, Poland took the gold, Hungary took the silver and Soviet Union and East Germany shared the bronze.
Unfortunately, Kehoe never did get to do much scouting outside of trips to new Jersey and San Francisco. As in the past, the players were selected by a committee rather than the coach. The training camps did not help much since the team left behind many of the trained players when embarking to Newfoundland for the first qualifier against canada. Many of the players who went were from the St. Louis stars, Kehoe's former team: Pat McBride, Willy Roy, Steve Frank, Gary rensing among others. The only other ntable name was Rudy Getzinger. On top of that, hotel reservations were messed up, and the players' visas mysteriously disappeared for a day.
The first game was a long slow sinking eeling. Canada scored, repeated and scored again, all in the first 18 minutes. the US finally found the net. losing 3-2. The team disbanded, despite the next game coming up a week later. They reconstitued at Baltimore, having added Peter Millar and William Maia. Despite a lack of training, they managed a 2-2 draw on August 29. A week later, they flew to Mexico, having added Werner Roth of the Cosmos and Oscar Benitez from Philadelphia. Mexico dominated from the start, scoring in the 11th minutes, twice more in the first half. Willy Roy managed a late goal to make the final 3-1. Mexico then went on to beat Canada 2-1 to qualify, thereby eliminating the US. The return match against Mexico was academic.
It was just as well, since injuries left Kehoe without 11 men to send on the field. A few hours before the game, when this was realized, a desperate recruiting drive was started and yielded two players. One player recognized a former German-American league player sitting in the stands two hours before the game, Slobodan (Barney) Djorjekic He was greeted, invited on the team, signed his papers and took to the field at left wing. The US opened the scoring, but Mexico quickly answered, and went on to a 2-1 victory. The result was not surprising, considering the US never fielded the same lineup, only a few players were there through the entire 20 days, and there was little training, and no scrimmages. Once again, it was clear that adequate training was essential, and merely promising it was not enough. Ultimately, host West Germany won the 1974 World Cup, defeating Holland 2-1.
USA National Team Results Date Score Opponent Venue (event) ==================================================================================== 1972 Totals: 2 wins, 5 draws, 6 losses Sep 10 72 L 1-2 Mexico Los Angeles, CA, USA (WCQ'74) Geimer Sep 03 72 L 1-3 Mexico Mexico City, Mexico (WCQ'74) Roy Aug 31 72 L 0-7 West Germany Munich, West Germany (OLY'72)* Aug 29 72 L 0-3 Malaysia Ingolstadt, W. Germany(OLY'72)* Aug 29 72 D 2-2 Canada Baltimore, MD, USA (WCQ'74) Roy, Geimer Aug 27 72 D 0-0 Morocco Augsburg, West Germany(OLY'72)* Aug 20 72 L 2-3 Canada St. John's, Canada (WCQ'74) Roy, Getzinger May 14 72 W 2-1 Jamaica St. Louis, MO, USA (OLQ'72)* Carenza, Hernandez May 10 72 D 2-2 Mexico San Francisco, CA, USA (OLQ'72)* Seerey (2) Apr 25 72 W 2-1 Guatemala Miami, FL, USA (OLQ'72)* Seerey (2) Apr 16 72 L 2-3 Guatemala Guatemala City, Guat. (OLQ'72)* Hamm, Carenza Jan 23 72 D 1-1 Mexico Guadalajara, Mexico (OLQ'72)* Carenza Jan 16 72 D 1-1 Jamaica Kingston, Jamaica (OLQ'72)* Roboostoff
The Rochester Lancers had a surprisingly successful performance at the 1971 CONCACAF Cup, much of which took place in eaerly 1972. Rochester had qualified by virtue of their 1970 NASL championship, and the defeat of Bermuda in the 1971 qualifying competition, followed by the forfeit of their next opponent, Guadalajara. The Lancers opened with a 2-0 victory over Trasvaal of Surinam, on goals by Carlo Dell'Omodarne, the Lancer's newest acquisition, and veteran Eli Durante. This was followed by a draw with Cruz Azul before 40,000 fans who largely rooted for the US. The tying Lancer goal was scored by NASL All-Star Manfred Seissler. Next was a 2-0 victory over Estrella of the Netherlands Antilles, which set up the tournament's most anticipated game - Lancers against Communicaciones of Guatamala City. This hard fought, and sometimes controversial game ended with a 3-1 Communicaciones victory. At this point, the US was in 4th place, only one game behind Communicaciones. But on the last day of the tournament, a heartbreaking 0-1 loss to Alajueta of Costa Rica closed the series for the Americans, which left Ajauela and Cruz Azul tied for the tournament championship. despite this success, the U.S. did not take part in the 1972 edition of the Cup.
By 1972, college soccer was growing so rapidly, the NCAA split into two divisions. Many independents also joined at the Division 2 level. This season also saw the additions of the Massachusetts State Conference, Pennsylvania Conference, Tennessee Conference, West Virginia Conference, Northwest Conference, and Southern California Athletic Conference.
This year, the first annual Senior Soccer Bowl was played at Showalter Field in Winter Park, FL. The East won the contest, defeating the West 2-0. It was an auspicious debut, and a number of the participants then went on to make their mark in the North American Soccer League, including Bob Rigby, Andy Rymarczuk and Bob Smith.
In the NCAA Division 1 tournament third round, Cornell defeated Harvard 2-0, UCLA defeated San Jose State 3-1, Howard defeated Pennsylvania 2-0, and St. Louis defeated Ohio 3-1. In the semifinals, UCLA defeated Cornell 1-0, and St. Louis defeated Howard 2-1 in overtime. The championship game, played in Miami on December 29, 1971, saw St. Louis reclaim the national crown by beating UCLA 4-2.
The inaugural Division 2 tournament, like Division 1, had a field of 24 teams, with 8 teams being awarded a bye for the first round. Many teams in the field had been perennial contenders in years past, but recently had been edged out of the competition as larger universities had established and built their soccer teams into national prominence. These included such familiar names as Baltimore, Bridgeport, SIU Edwardsville, Akron, Brockport State and Philadelphia Textile. In the third round, Oneonta State defeated Springfield 2-1, Cal State Chico defeated Cal State Fullerton 1-0, SIU Edwardsville defeated Akron 3-2, and Baltimore defeated East Stroudsberg 3-0. In the semifinals, Oneonta State defeated Cal State Chico 6-0, and SIU Edwardsville defeated Baltimore 4-1. The championship was won by SIU Edwardsville 1-0 over Oneonta State, on a December 9, 1972 match at Edwardsville, IL.
NSCAA Final coaches' Poll:
1. Howard, 2. Pennsylvania, 3. Harvard, 4. SIU/Edwardsville, 5. Penn State, 6. St. Louis, 7. LIU/Brooklyn, 8. Missouri-St. Louis, 9. Westmount, 10. Hartwick
Conference Champions: West Coast Intercollegiate Soccer League: San Jose State New England Intercollegiate Soccer League: Brown Ivy League: Penn Metropolitan Intercollegiate Soccer Conference: Adelphi Atlantic Coast Conference: Clemson New York State Atletic Conference: Cortland, Oneonta, Brockort (co-champions) Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate League: Air Force Southern Conference: Appalachian State Mason-Dixon Conference: Baltimore Yankee Conference: Rhode Island Virginia Intercollegiate Soccer Conference: Madison, Randolph-Macon (co-champions) Far Western Conference: San Francisco State, Chico State (Co-champions) Massachusetts State Conference: Westfield State New Jersey State Conference: Montclair State Pennsylvania Conference: East Stroudsberg Presidents Athletic Conference: Bethany Independent College Athletic Conference: Rennsalaer Tennessee Conference: Sewanee Michigan Intercollegiate Conference: Hope Minnesota Intercollegiate Conference: Gustavus Adolphus West Virginia Conference: Davis & Elkins Northwest Conference: Washington Midwest Conference: Beliot Southern California Soccer Association: Westmount Southern California Athletic Conference: Whittier Middle Atlantic States Athletic Conference: St. Joseph's College All Americans: G - Bob Rigby, East Stroudsberg B - Alan Harte, Quincy B - Gerardo Pagnani, Eastern Illinois B - Hans Wango, Davis & Elkins B - Gordon Cholmondeley, Philadelphia Textile B - Chris Bahr, Penn State F - Ian Bain, Howard F - Andre Rymarczuk, Penn State F - Chris Papagianis, Harvard F - Eugene Durham, Philadelphia Textile F - Tom Kazembe, Wooster Hermann Trophy: Mike Seerey, St. Louis NAIA Championship:Wesmount defeated Davis & Elkins 2-1 (2 overtimes) NJCAA Championship: Meramec Community College 3, Miami-Dade South 0 Messiah Invitational Tournament (NCCAA): Messiah finished in first place.
1972 US National Challenge Open Cup Final: S. C. Elizabeth (German-American League) defeated the San Pedro Yugoslavs (their second consecutive Cup final) 1-0 on May 21, 1972.
1972 National Amateur Cup Final: St. Louis Busch defeated New Bedford Portuguese 1-0 on June 16.
National Junior (James C. McGuire) Cup: Seco, St. Louis
CONCACAF Champions Cup, 1972: The US did not participate in 1972. In the final, Olimpia (Honduras) defeated Robin Hood (Suriname) 2-0
National Soccer Hall of Fame: In 1972, Julius Alonso and Duncan Duff were inducted into the Hall of Fame. William Rosenthal was inducted into the National Intercollegiate Officials' Hall of Fame.
Last update: May 30, 2008
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