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SIXTH CLASS TO BE INDUCTED INTO HALL OF FAME

SIXTH CLASS TO BE INDUCTED INTO BALTIMORE BLAST HALL OF FAME ON MARCH 7

Former Players Billy Ronson and Richard Chinapoo to Join Blast Legends

The Baltimore Blast announced today that former players Billy Ronson and Richard Chinapoo will be inducted into the Baltimore Blast Hall of Fame on Saturday, March 7.  Original Blast Head Coach Kenny Cooper, former players Stan Stamenkovic, Mike Stankovic, Tim Wittman, Bruce Savage, Dave MacWilliams, Joey Fink, Heinz Wirtz, Keith Van Eron and Dominic Mobilio are already in Hall of Fame, along with original MISL Commissioner Earl Foreman.  Ronson and Chinapoo will be honored in a ceremony during halftime of the Blast game against the Philadelphia KiXX on March 7th.

“I am happy to announce the upcoming induction of Billy Ronson and Richard Chinapoo into the Baltimore Blast Hall of Fame," said Blast Owner Ed Hale.  "Billy has played, coached and been part of management for the team and has had a positive influence in all those capacities, not to mention being a fan favorite.  Chinapoo gave his all to the team for six seasons and then coached against the Blast during the modern era of indoor soccer.  Both men were outstanding soccer players and are great additions to our Hall of Fame."

Ronson, who played for the original Blast from 1985-1992 and for the current Blast during the 1998-99 season, was the League’s leading scorer in the 1989 postseason.  A 1991 All-Star and 1990-91 Team MVP, he ranks fifth on the original Blast’s all-time scoring list with 240 points and is tied to rank fifth on the original Blast’s postseason all-time scoring list with 43 points.  Ronson returned to the playing field for 17 games during the 1998-99 season and recorded 13 points.  He also served as the team’s assistant coach and assistant General Manager from 1998-2002.  

“It is definitely an honor to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, especially with all the other great players and with Richard,” said Ronson.  “I never anticipated something like this when I first came to Baltimore to play soccer.”

Chinapoo, a defender who played for the Blast from 1983-88 and again for the 1990-91 season, was a member of the team’s 1984 MISL Championship team.  A three-time All-Star (1986, 1987 and 1988), he ranks sixth on the original Blast’s all-time scoring list with 206 points and was one of just five Blast players to record 40 goals in one season (1986-87).

“It is very gratifying to be recognized with all these players,” said Chinapoo.  “I played with most of these guys and we went through a lot of battle together to establish a successful team in Baltimore.  That time in Baltimore was memorable and everyone who was a part of that time will always cherish it.  This is a major satisfaction in my career.”

The Blast (10-2, first place in the NISL), will travel to Monterrey this weekend for a Sunday-night match against the second-place La RaZa.  The Blast has just six regular season games remaining and will return to 1st Mariner Arena on the 6th and 7th to host La RaZa and then the Philadelphia KiXX, respectively, and to induct Ronson and Chinapoo into the Hall of Fame on the 7th.  Single-game tickets cost $30, $22, $19 and $16 and are on sale at the 1st Mariner Arena Box Office, by calling TicketMaster at 410-547-SEAT or online at www.ticketmaster.com.  Group discounts are available for all games.  For additional information on all Blast tickets, call the Blast office at 410-73-BLAST.

Baltimore Blast Class of 2009 Player Statistics

Billy Ronson’s Regular Season Stats with the Original Blast:
GP    Goals    Assists    Points

280    118         122          240

Billy Ronson’s Postseason Stats with the Original Blast:
GP    Goals     Assists    Points

39       21            22              43

Billy Ronson’s Regular Season Stats with the Current Blast:
GP    3PG    2PG    1PG    TG    Assists    Points

17       0          5         0        5            3             13


Richard Chinapoo’s Regular Season Stats:        
GP    Goals        Assists    Points  
         
222    114                92          206            

Richard Chinapoo’s Postseason Stats:
GP    Goals     Assists    Points

29       13             10            23
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