Omaha takes it to Overtime, Leaves with Heartbreaking Loss to San Diego

WRITTEN BY JOSEPH REINA
APRIL 8, 2022

The Kings’ incredible season is cut short after a 9-8 golden-goal overtime loss at the hands of the San Diego Sockers II.

Ismael Rojo was the hero for San Diego, scoring the 9th and decisive goal in overtime to secure their place in the MASL 2 Championship game on Sunday. The Sockers 2 were moments away from winning in regulation before Manuel Lira’s miraculous goal with six seconds left forced the game into overtime where the Kings would ultimately come up just short.

…Ceruli assisted Manuel Lira off a set piece to send the game into overtime with just six seconds left.

The Kings led for the majority of the game, including by three goals at one point, before San Diego climbed back to level the score at 6-6 with just under three minutes to play in the third quarter. Guilherme Alencar completed his hattrick to take Omaha into the 4th Quarter with a one-goal advantage, but the Sockers 2 were undeterred. Alan Crespo and Hiram Ruiz scored in quick succession to flip the script and give San Diego its first lead since the first quarter.

The Sockers 2 looked set to advance as they kept their one-goal lead until Murilo Ceruli assisted Manuel Lira off a setpiece, for Lira’s third goal of the night and Omaha’s 8th, to send the game into overtime with just six seconds left. Both teams exchanged opportunities in an extremely back and forth overtime period for over eight minutes until Ismael Rojo scored the winner to end Omaha’s season.

Following the Kings/Sockers match, the Cleveland Crunch, M2’s 2020 – 21 defending champions proceeded to take on the Muskegon Risers, taking the win and setting up the championship game as defending champs verse defending champs.  The Sockers II had claimed the M2 Championship title in the 2018 – 2019 season, but had to sit out the following season due to covid restrictions in their state.

 

The Championship game was held on April 10th, 2022, where the Sockers II went on to reclaim their title as the M2 Champions.  Cleveland fought hard with the heart and passion they’ve always displayed, but ultimately came up just a few goals short.

 

The Kings will head back to Omaha with their heads held high after an incredible season. Seven wins, 129 goals scored and eight Kings players with over 10 points in the most competitive division in the league are certainly accomplishments to take note of.  Taking the longest running franchise in indoor soccer history to the last two minutes of overtime, who then went on to claim the championship, is also a remarkable achievement for the Kings to record in their history books.  The Kings will no doubt look to regroup, pick up their crowns, and come back next season, hungry to finish what they started this year.

 

The franchise would like to thank all of their sponsors, fans, and families for the incredible support this season.  Follow the Omaha Kings on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for updates on the upcoming 2022 – 2023 season.

Photography by William Mcintosh with our good friends at the Cleveland Crunch

ABOUT THE OMAHA KINGS FC

The Omaha Kings FC is a Men’s Professional Arena Soccer team in the state of Nebraska, proudly representing the Major Arena Soccer League 2.  The Major Arena Soccer League represents the highest level of professional arena soccer in the world. Our team embodies a grassroots focus, consisting of mostly local talent seeking pathways to play soccer at the professional level.

The Kings launched in 2019 in the Premier Arena Soccer League (PASL), finishing 3rd overall with a wildcard invite to finals.  In 2020, they joined the semi-pro and third tier of the MASL pyramid, and brought home the first ever National Championship title in the history of the M3 Arena Soccer League.  Coming off that huge momentum, the Kings were granted to Pro status at the M2 level in the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) and were invited to play a provisional year for the 2020 – 2021 season.  For 2021 – 2022, the Kings only participated in the M2 professional level and were crowned the Midwest Conference Champions.  Making it to the final four, they lost in overtime to the San Diego Sockers II, who went on to become the M2 league champions.  The next M2 season will kick off in November of 2022.

The team’s practice field is at Off The Wall Indoor Soccer Facility (110th & Harrison).  The club was founded by Argentinian native Emmanuel Viel and his wife, Omaha native, Natalie Viel (Troutman).  Serving as Director is Carlos Viel, a former professional soccer player from Necochea, Argentina.  Head coach is Emmanuel Viel, with Assistant Coach and Bellevue native, Brian Locke.

THE MAJOR ARENA SOCCER LEAGUE AND THE M2

The Major Arena Soccer League represents the highest level of professional arena soccer in the world. The MASL is a 4 tier pyramid league consisting of professional and semi-professional men’s arena soccer teams.  The Omaha Kings play at the professional level in the MASL 2 (second tier), backed by the Major Arena Soccer League (top tier).  The remaining pyramid consists of the M3 (third tier and semi-pro), and the PASL (fourth tier and amateur).  For more information about the MASL and the M2, visit their websites at the links below:

MASL  |  maslsoccer.com
M2 Soccer  |  m2soccer.com

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