Rocket City United soccer continues camp

Rocket City United of the Southeast Conference of the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) will continue their pre-season training this Monday, April 25th as they take on the Nashville Metros of the PDL. The game will kick-off at 7:00 PM in Pulaski and will mark the final preseason test for RCU before the intrasquad Red/Black game on April 30th at 7:00 PM.

Rocket City United will also be putting together a team for the upcoming Relay For Life, which will take place April 29th & 30th at Madison City Schools Stadium. The relay consists of teams of participants who walk from 7 PM to 7 AM, beginning at sunset, fighting fatigue during the night and then finishing at sunrise.

These stages metaphorically represent the fading of hope, the strain & temptation to give up and the return of hope that cancer patients experience as they undergo treatment. RCU's goal is to reach a donation total of $1000 to go toward the American Cancer Society. Those interested in participating or donating should inquire at

With Rocket City United facing four teams in the last two weeks, preseason preparations were already in full swing. Last weekend, RCU had two friendlies against Montevallo University and Belmont University.

The first test against Montevallo may have been something of a disappointment as RCU fell by a 1-0 score last Saturday. The team was missing some key players - especially in the attack - and in general had an "off day" according to Director of Operations Jan Henner, who was quick to thank both Montevallo and the German Club in downtown Birmingham for hosting the team after the game.

The match on Sunday against Belmont showed more promise which coincided with the return of veteran players Brian Kimbugwe and Andrew Nkurunungi. After a scoreless first half, RCU adapted to the pace of the game as Nkurunungi lobbed the keeper to open the scoring in the second half, while just 15 minutes later, midfielder Tyler Cunningham added a second goal.

The second match of the weekend provided the result fans want to see, and Henner felt that both opponents provided good tests and helped the coaching staff make evaluations.

"We have three weeks of hard work ahead of us, but we are pretty confident that we can field a good squad on May 7th (at Knoxville Force) and that's the game that counts," said Henner.

Rocket City United faced two college squads during the Weekend Blitz Tournament on April 9th in Decatur. RCU got off to a quick start vs. University of Alabama-Huntsville, running the score up to 3-0 in the first ten minutes with goals from Marcos Nules, John Tyson and Kenial Hyde. The only goal for RCU in the match vs. Young Harris College came from Hugo Sanchez, which was canceled out by a YHC penalty kick in the 1-1 draw.

Henner was very appreciative of both UAH and Young Harris for their participation, and felt that they were good opponents to test a squad like this against.

"We had already put together almost 80% of the team," said Henner. "This was just a good conclusion to that process. We played good football for part of the time. Obviously there is some stuff to work on on but we will be good to go by the start of the season."

About Rocket City United: Rocket City United competes in the NPSL Southeast Conference, and for the Summer 2011 season will go up against the likes of the Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves, Georgia Revolution, Jacksonville United, Knoxville Force and 2010 NPSL National Finalist Chattanooga FC. For more information on the organization, please visit their official website at or send an e-mail to

About the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL): The NPSL was founded in 2003 and is a national team-run men's pro-am league with over 35 teams in four conferences, and is sanctioned by the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) as an affiliate of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF). Both USSF and FIFA recognize the NPSL as a Division IV league behind Major League Soccer (MLS), the North American Soccer League (NASL) and USL Pro. Through USASA, NPSL clubs are able to qualify for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, the oldest running soccer tournament in the country and one of the oldest soccer tournaments in the world. For more information, visit our official website at or send us an e-mail at