Mile High Trophy Returns to Feel the Fury of Dynamite
The Lightning may have failed to strike a second season, but the Ft. Collins Fury have no qualms with taking on where they left off when the second incarnation of the Mile High Trophy kicks off this Saturday at the Denver Bladium.
From Day One it had all the makings of a great rivalry. The PASL-Pro's two closest teams geographically, the Denver Dynamite and Colorado Lightning might have been the farthest apart when it comes to matters on the field.
And so, as the story goes, a donation from a fan who wished to remain anonymous raised the stakes considerably in the rivalry. From then on the winner of each game between the two teams took home the Mile High Trophy - a historic trophy that dates back to 1920s India. The trophy was originally a prize in hotly contested games between Indian locals and British soldiers. The trophy is unmarked because the intention was always for it to change hands after each victory.
"Anytime we can inject some tradition in our league it's a great opportunity. The Colorado area is a hotbed for arena soccer and many of these guys have been playing against each other their whole lives so there's always going to be a lot of intensity there." PASL-Pro league spokesman Sydney Nusinov.
Both teams kept the crowds at the edge of their seats in their five head-to-head matchups where the first 3 were decided in overtime and the rest in the final minutes. In the first meeting Colorado rallied to win 10-9 in overtime on Denver's home field and in the return match it was Denver with a dramatic come-from-behind 8-7 overtime win on Colorado's home turf at the Budweiser Events Center. Then again won in the same fashion in the "Round of 16" in the US Arena Open Cup with a 5-4 overtime victory. The final two matches belonged to the Dynamite as well, winning 9-6 and then 9-5 on the final game of regular season to push the Denver into the playoffs.
Despite the Dynamite winning 9-7 in the previous two meeting with the Fury, this series again promises not to disappoint. Where Denver picked up the backbone of the Lightning after their dispersal in the off season, Ft. Collins has bolstered their roster with the remaining former Colorado Lightning members and fused them with the core of players that have brought them 3 Rocky Mountain Division titles in the PASL-Premier division to make things interesting.
"I have witnessed many rivalries in many sports... Bulls vs. Knicks, Rangers vs. Celtic! Although it may not be on such a grandstand as those, last season's battle for the Mile High Trophy had proven to be a very exciting spectacle! When two teams of such close proximity compete against each other, bragging rights becomes worth its weight in gold!" Head Coach Chris Handsor.
Whether pure competition or bad blood; now we will see how Character, Pride and Determination places the Mile High Trophy in the victors grip.
The next regular season game between the teams is February 21st at Fort Collins Indoor Soccer in Ft. Collins.
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Professional Arena Soccer League Stories from December 9, 2009
- Sutton Ready To Make Professional Return To Sacramento - California Cougars
- Mile High Trophy Returns to Feel the Fury of Dynamite - Denver Dynamite
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