USASA: LUSA, SNESC Merge for 2014

Photo credit: Joao Vieira

Photo credit: Joao Vieira

The two biggest amateur leagues in southern New England appear to be close to merging for the upcoming season.

Representatives from Fall River-based Ligas Unidas Soccer Association (LUSA) and Rhode Island-based Southern New England Super Cup (SNESC) met on Wednesday to discuss a scenario in which the two leagues would combine into one. Both leagues are affiliated with the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA).

The official LUSA Facebook page first announced the development, alluding to the idea of creating one league to serve the region’s fans, players, coaches and staff.

“Recently LUSA was approached by Southern New England Soccer League from Rhode Island and they wanted to meet with us,” the message read. “We met last Wednesday 3/5 at the league office in Fall River and the topic was a possible MERGER between the leagues. The overall theme was that; it would be best to have 1 strong league than 2 struggling ones. We had a very productive exchange so much so that, we set another meeting for this Wednesday 3/12, this time in RI.”

On Thursday, the Rhode Island Soccer Association, which backs the SNESC, confirmed via Facebook that the two leagues had merged.

“Rhode Island Soccer Association is proud to announce the formation of New England’s most prestigious men’s premier soccer league, The LUSA Southern New England Super Cup,” the message read. “Details to be posted over the next several days.”

LUSA was originally launched in the early-1980s as the Commercial Industrial Soccer Association, and comprised of teams based in East Providence, Bristol, Fall River and New Bedford. The SNESC was launched last year, and has quickly established its footprint in the Ocean State.

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About Brian O'Connell

Brian O'Connell serves as editor and staff writer at New England Soccer Today. He's also the Revolution beat writer for ESPNBoston.com, and is Officer at Large for the North American Soccer Reporters. He regularly contributes to The Associated Press, and has been featured on MLSSoccer.com & RevsNet.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BrianOConnell21 or contact him via e-mail at BOConnell21@aol.com