Maroon Squad Edges White Team, 24-23
Bullen notched four goals in the exhibition (Photo by Rich Graessle)
Newark, N.J. (Wednesday, March 18, 2009) – Everybody got in on the action today at Prudential Center when the New Jersey Ironmen played their Maroon and White Game for “Healthy Kids Day”. White Team midfielder Oral Bullen put four in between the pipes, but his team eventually fell to the Maroon Team by a tally of 24-23.
“It was all for the kids and having fun today,” Bullen commented. “We love being surrounded by the young members of the Ironmen community, and it was a tremendous day all around.”
When Bullen knocked home his fourth goal of the day with 2:31 remaining in regulation, the White Team took a 23-22 lead and appeared to be headed towards victory. Maroon Team midfielder Lucio Gonzaga then answered with 49 ticks remaining in the contest, and his team held on to reap the awards of the win.
“We said that the losing team had to buy the winning team pizza,” Bullen stated. “When I scored that last goal, my stomach was growling, and I could taste the pizza.”
Unfortunately for Bullen, all he would taste is bitter defeat.
After the game concluded, Bullen, Ironmen Head Coach Omid Namazi and defenders Evan McNeley and Jerrod Laventure headed to the Prudential Center Media Room for a press conference with students from the Write on Sports afterschool program. Write on Sports was founded by retired AP sports writer Byron Yake in 2006, and the program assists students in improving their writing skills while learning about journalism. There are currently three aspects to the program: summer camps, afterschool programming and on-location events such as this Ironmen game.
“It’s always fun to work with the kids from Write on Sports, and they honestly ask better questions than some of the professionals out there!” Bullen laughingly remarked. “This program is something new and unique, and I’ve never seen anything quite like it before.”
Next up for the Ironmen is the opportunity to gain some ground on the first place Milwaukee Wave in front of their home crowd at the Rock this Sunday, March 22nd, when they host the Wave at 1:00 p.m. New Jersey will be wearing special green jerseys in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, and all jerseys will be branded with the Grassroot Soccer (GRS) logo. All jerseys will be sold through a silent auction during the game, with GRS receiving the proceeds. GRS founder and Survivor-Africa winner Ethan Zohn will be at the game while former Cosmos captain Werner Roth will be the Ironmen honorary captain during the opening kick ceremonies. Tickets for all Ironmen contests can be purchased today by calling 1-800-IRONMEN.