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Lilavois Scores Three Goals, Cougars Advance to Final Four

January 12, 2009 - Professional Arena Soccer League (PASL) - California Cougars News Release

STOCKTON, Calif. - Jan. 11, 2009 - Cougars head coach Bernie Lilavois recorded his second consecutive hat trick in Stockton's 12-7 win against the San Diego Sockers on Sunday night at Stockton Arena. The win eliminated the Sockers from the United States Arena Soccer Open Cup tournament and pushed the Cougars into the Final Four.

The Cougars will await the winner of the Quarter Final match between Denver and a yet to be determined opponent. The Dynamite will face either the Premier Arena Soccer League's Tacoma Stars or the Professional Arena Soccer League's Wenatchee Fire. Wenatchee hosts Tacoma on Jan. 17 at the Wenatchee Valley Sportsplex.

The tournament bracket is available at www.arenaleague.com.

Majell Aterado was the first on the score board for either team as he nailed a pass from Brian Farber through the Sockers' defense just 12 seconds into the match.

Coach Lilavois followed with a strike on an assist from Ato Leone at the 12:02 mark. Lilavois gave Stockton the 2-0 lead and would lead all scorers with three goals in the match. His second goal was an athletic scissor kick that eluded the reach of Riley Swift in the third quarter. All three of his goals were assisted by Leone.

Craig Chiles hit the first goal for San Diego and was later followed by the first of two first half goals for Nate Hetherington.

Nelson Santana broke the 2-2 first quarter tie with a goal at the 13:19 mark of the second quarter. But, Hetherington tied it at three apiece with his second goal at the 7:08 mark.

Stockton rallied for two consecutive goals to close out the first half, the first by Brian Farber and the second by Dalitso Muluzi. Farber hit his to break the tie at the 5:31 mark. Muluzi nailed his long strike from the yellow line with just :54 seconds left in the second.

Stockton took a 5-3 lead to the half time break, but would watch Craig Chiles bring San Diego back within one with an early third quarter goal. His goal was assisted by Carlos Calderson and it brought the score to 5-4.

Stockton, however, went on a tear following the Chiles goal. Josh Copeland hit the first of three straight Stockton goals. The second was scored by rookie defender Uriel Robledo and the third by coach Lilavois. His goal came after a quick pass to the center of the penalty area in front of the San Diego goal by Leone. Lilavois collected the ball in the air while leaning backwards and then ripped off a dazzling scissor kick before the home crowd.

David Beltran broke the scoring streak with 2:54 left in the third, but "the Bolt" answered in the early portion of the fourth quarter. His third goal gave Stockton the 9-5 lead with 9:11 left in the final frame of play.

Diego Rovira brought San Diego within three with a goal at the 5:47 mark with his first goal of the night. San Diego then brought in Paul Wright as a sixth attacker and Aterado took full advantage. He launched a long shot from the yellow line that caromed off the end board, off Wright's back and into the goal. It was one of two goals scored against the sixth attacker in the match.

Hetherington struck his third goal of the match after Aterado's goal, but then Brian Farber took things over. His two goals gave Stockton their eleventh and twelfth goals of the match.

The winning goal was scored by Lilavois in the third quarter.

About the Stockton Cougars

Announced on February 28, 2004, the Cougars made their competitive debut as a member of the now defunct Major Indoor Soccer League in November, 2005, with the beginning of their first 30-game regular season. The Cougars announced their move to the Professional Arena Soccer League (PASL-Pro) prior to the 2008-09 season. They began competitive play as an inaugural member of the PASL-Pro on October 25, 2008 at Stockton Arena against the Colorado Lightning. Located in Stockton, California, the Stockton Cougars play their home games at the state-of-the-art Stockton Area, an integral piece to the city's developing waterfront district. Stockton Arena opened to the public in December, 2005. For additional information about the Cougars, contact Greg Young, Director of Media Relations, at (209) 373-1550 or visit the Stockton Cougars' official website: www.stocktoncougars.net.

About the PASL-Pro

PASL-Pro is a newly formed arena soccer league that is made up of eight U.S. teams and four Canadian teams. The league has partnered with the Canadian Major Indoor Soccer League (CMISL) and Liga Mexicana de Futbol Rapido (LMFR) in order to create a true North American arena soccer league. PASL-Pro is the direct result of 10 successful seasons of the Premier Arena Soccer League (PASL-Premier). PASL-Premier is the nation's top amateur arena soccer league. PASL-Pro and PASL-Premier are members of Federacion Internacional de Futbol Rapido (FIFRA). More information about the PASL-Pro can be obtained at www.arenaleague.com.

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