POCONO SNOW Press Officer Jim Shoopack

MAY 7, 2010

Pocono Snow Home opener upcoming!

With the anticipation of another Pocono Snow season before us, it’s hard to believe that practically a full year has passed since our inaugural season.

In that time, we’ve had a lot of changes – changes in administration, coaching and even players.

Starting at the top, Derek Arneaud, formerly the Women’s Soccer coach at East Stroudsburg University, and current physical education teacher and athletic director at Notre Dame of East Stroudsburg High School, takes over as the club General Manager.

Pat Mullally, last year’s GM, has now become the club President and will still be involved in the overseeing of the club.  Derek will be more involved in the day to day matters.

Coaching-wise, James Ellison, Head Coach of the current District 11 and 3-time Mountain Valley Conference Champion Stroudsburg Mounties, takes over as  the “gaffer” (head coach) for the Pocono Snow.  Coach Ellison will be looking to reverse the fortunes of a Snow team that went 0-9-1 last year.

On the playing side, the Snow have brought in numerous new players – searching high and low along Northeastern Pennsylvania – for the newest Snow players.  After three tryouts out the Riverfront Sports Complex and also at the Mary Street fields near East Stroudsburg University, the club chose the eleven top players (out of approximately 100!) that will wear the Orange and White of the Pocono Snow this season.  Other players will be brought in from a very competitive U-23/reserve team.

On the PR end, we’re looking to make the Snow the top draw in the Poconos!  We’re going to need your help!  If you’re interested in helping out the Snow in any way, we are looking for some volunteers.  Send me an e-mail and we will see where we can place you!

Don’t forget our first game………Saturday, May 15th at 6pm at Eiler-Martin Stadium (on the campus of East Stroudsburg University!!).  Tickets are $5/per person and all youth under the age of 14 (wearing their team soccer jersey) and accompanying a paying adult, will be admitted free!  See you on Saturday, May 15th!!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!!

APRIL 7, 2010

Not so fast..........No runaway league winners in Europe.

With just weeks to spare in the English, Spanish, German, Italian and even French leagues for that matter, each pass, cross, shot and save count now more so than ever.  As each of the “Big Four” leagues from the mainland begin to come to a close, not to mention England – few points remain available for teams looking to make runs at the top spot in some of the world’s best leagues.

Over the next couple of weeks, I will look to feature the culmination of some of the European leagues, while not losing focus on the local High School scene (I am the JV girls coach at one of the local high schools) and of course, your Pocono Snow!

I’m going to be honest with you here – my favorite European league, by far, is the English Premier League.  As a result,
I HAVE to start of this first edition of “Shoop’s Scoop” by discussing the three-horse race that has taken over the Premiership by storm.

Aside from the two usual suspects of Manchester United and Chelsea, Arsenal, usually an “also ran” in the Premiership (they seem to come close, just never being able to reach the top spot as of recent memory) have come to form as of late – no more evidenced by their recent four wins in their last five matches (4-0-1 record and 13 point haul in total) that has brought them within a shout of Man U and the Blues from Chelsea.

Third place Arsenal (71 points; three out of first) have a fairly tough (I’d say maybe a 6.5 on the “toughness” scale [out of 10, of course]) remaining schedule, starting Wednesday (14th of April) against “Top 5” side, at Tottenham.  Remaining fixtures for Arsenal include an away match at Wigan (currently 16th), then hosting 4th place Manchester City, before ending their respective season at 11th place Blackburn and hosting Fulham (12th).

Man United, currently a point out of 1st place, lost out on 3 crucial points to front-runners Chelsea this past weekend.  Losing 2-1 at Old Trafford certainly couldn’t help the current Trophy holders ambitions to keep the Premiership Title in the Republik (it is spelled with a “k” folks J) of Mancunia.

That loss to Chelsea was United’s only blemish from their last five Premiership matches, having run a perfect 4-0 record going into the battle of the frontrunners.

Similar to Arsenal, United will also face Blackburn and Manchester City (both played away), before entertaining Tottenham at Old Trafford.  The Red Devils will finish off the 2009-2010 Premiership season by going north to play at 13th place Sunderland, and hosting mid-table Stoke City.  Some of the outcomes of United’s and Arsenal’s common opponents could dictate as to whom potentially hosts the Premiership title at the end of the season.

However, on that note, and don’t curse me yet Chelsea supporters, come your Blues.  After 33 matches played, five yet to go, Chelsea come into the last segment of the season riding a 13 point haul over the last five matches, with the only blemish being a 1-1 draw at 11th place Blackburn Rovers.

The posh London club’s remaining schedule features the Blue’s hosting 15th place Bolton, 10th place Stoke City, and 16th place Wigan Athletic.  It is not however with the home matches that I personally see Chelsea potentially stumbling, but with their away matches.  Chelsea play at 5th place Tottenham and 6th place Liverpool, and it is the slipping away of those points that could find someone else at the top.

However, as I conclude this first edition of Shoop’s Scoop – I have to say this.  Not many teams can beat Man United at Old Trafford.  This is not an easy task.  Having had the good fortune to have travelled to Old Trafford to have watched a game, I can tell you that these are 74,000 of the most raucous supporters that you’ll ever meet.  They are a passionate group, who not only like to make you think there are 12 players on the pitch, but maybe 14 or 15.  As a result, United need to quickly forget the loss to Chelsea and to move on…….quickly.

As nice as it would be to see a club like Arsenal, one that seems to take the pizzazz of Arsene Wenger and breed younger players into world superstars, I simply don’t think Arsenal have enough time left to challenge for the top.  They sit merely 3 points out, however, their goal differential of 41 is a distant third to Chelsea’s 54.  United have the best chance to challenge Chelsea with a goal differential of 50.

What do you think?  Let us know your thoughts on the English Premiership and the last couple of games.  Drop me a line at: [email protected] – please put “Shoop’s Scoop” in the subject line.

PRESS CONFERENCE FOR SNOW – Means it’s almost that time of the year!!

The Scoop wouldn’t be complete, without of course, talking about your Pocono Snow!  Our club is having a Press Conference next week to greet the media and further discuss the club’s ambitions to 1) improve upon last year, and 2) to introduce some of the changes in management.  Pat Mullally, last year’s General Manager and a local businessman, has relinquished that role, however remains as our club’s Team President.

Derek Arneaud, formerly ESU’s women’s soccer coach, and another local businessman, is taking over for Pat as the club General Manager.

On the coaching side of things, James Ellison, a former ESU men’s player, and local girls and boys soccer coach (he is currently the Head Coach of the 3-time MVC champion Stroudsburg Mounties), takes over the reigns as the Head Coach
of the club.

The club has recently had four tryouts – hosted both by Riverfront Sports Complex in Scranton and the Mary Street fields at East Stroudsburg University.  We’ve had close to 100 total players try to make the grade in order to wear the Pocono Snow strip for the 2010 season.  We should have some player signing information soon!  Thanks for reading and have a beautiful day!  Don’t let it get away!

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