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Team History

Somewhere in the distant reaches of time (round about 1978, to be specific) some guy ambled into the Boulder Parks & Rec office and signed a new team to the then-nascent Men's Competive Soccer league, beginning a circuitous causal chain whose final link stands today as Pellman's Automotive Soccer Club. Funny how time works.

The early days of the club, and league, are lost to history, or at least to the memories of anyone now present. Projecting back from the earliest recorded history, we can only assume those primitive proto-Pellmanians played on uneven pitches with spotty officiating and dubious fan support. (A ripped jersey from The Early Days investigated by a CU grad student in Cultural Anthropology a few years back turned up hard-clay soil residue, severe sun damage - which had turned the familiar Pellman's Gold into a near-invisible soft yellow - and, of course, beer stains.)

Throughout the '80's and into the early '90s, the League was comprised of about 6 to 12 teams which played in one or two divisions depending upon the enrollment during any given season. Games were held at Roper Fields, an acre lot just East of Rte. 36 on Jay Rd which is now, like most every other swatch of land that hasn't been purchased for Open Space, converted into luxury homes for people richer than all of us. The Roper "complex", such as it was, consisted of two dusty fields surrounded by a weedy fringe, some wooden posts, and a parking lot the size of Target's Homewares section.

The character of the team shifted regularly through this period. Scraps of evidence point to a motley mix of twenty-something guys - some recent college grads settling in Boulder or passing through, some guys looking to fill time between Winter ski seasons, and some holdovers from even earlier days who'd started with the team when they were in High School. Brad was elected manager of the team in 1987, a role which he maintained with dignity and grace until 2000, when family and fatigue forced him to hang up the clipboard. A select few other current Pellmaniacs had their first stints with the team pre-'90 - notably Adam, who took some time off for medical reasons but has since re-emerged as a force both on the field and in the barroom.

During this period, the squad - which was then called FC Boulder II - continually challenged for the league title, winning (at least once, in '93). Our primary opponents were a team made up of close friends with whom we practiced frequently (called Boulder Soccer Club) and a team sponsored by the West End Tavern, whom we considered to be the chippiest, whiniest bunch of no-account losers around, i.e. our mortal enemies. Truth be told, if you added up the stats, our rivals probably took more titles than we did during The Roper Years, but we were respected and feared, and always in contention. For the record, many guys from the old Boulder Soccer Club now play for Bounty (a team splintered from ours), and many of the West Enders have proven themselves in their dotage (and ours) to be pretty good guys.

After an interim period in the early '90's during which games were held at various places around town, the League moved to its current home at Pleasantview Fields. At this time, the team roster had become populated with a disproportionate number of law students. (It's unclear what the right proportion of lawyers is in any given social gathering, but, well, if they're in the majority, you gotta think something's screwed up.) As is the way with lawyers, one of these guys knew someone who knew someone who worked someplace with money to burn, and the team obtained a sponsor. We were re-christened JAG FC, in honor of the Judicial Arbiters' Group. The actual purpose or membership of this quasi-legal-sounding entity was never really clarified, but they did pony up a few hundred, and the name JAG sounded cool, so we stuck with it even after the dollars dried up a few seasons later.

Lawyer-jokes aside, the team was very successful throughout the '90s. In '93, we won a highly competitive statewide tournament held in Denver called the Guinell Cup. (The trophy sits today surrounded by shiny lugnuts and cups of sacred high-test motor oil on a shelf in Brad's office.) When the League permanently expanded beyond one division, first to two and then to three, JAG FC continually played in, and contended for the championship of, Division I. After four successive seasons of runner-up finishes, we won the first Division in the Spring of '98.

Since then, the team's fortunes have been up and down. Brad's shop has formally sponsored the team for several years now, hence the name Pellman's Automotive. The Fall '01 season was the team's first in Division 2, a campaign that started well, sagged in the middle, and ended pretty positively with a couple of wins and a tie.

In Spring '03, beset by injuries and a debilitating lack of young legs throughout the roster, Pellman's slipped into D3, failing to avoid relegation by the slimmest of margins - a single goal in any of three games would have been sufficient to keep the team in D2.

Taking the demotion as a personal challenge, the squad retooled for the Fall '02 season with the addition of several fleet defenders and a steely attitude, and proceeded to tear through D3 with unprecedented dominance - a perfect 10-0-0 record unmatched by any team in the league, in any division, ever before.

In Spring '03, the team re-acquainted themselves with the second division by extending to a 3-1-1 record midway through the season, good for first place and cause for some idle (and as it turns out, very premature) speculation about how we might fare in D1 in the Fall. Alas, the team was beset by accumulating injuries and untimely absences during the latter half of the season, dropping four straight before narrowly avoiding relegation with a tie in the final game.

The team excelled in the Fall '03 season, contending for the title until the final few games. In a season of haves and have-nots, Pellman's were among the top three finishers in the league, with a large points gap separating them from the fourth place team. Gritty gamesmanship prevailed throughout, with an undermanned squad earning a tough draw against the second place team and several rousing victories which established a nicely gelling group of newcomers and oldtimers.

Much has happened in the last decade, a few D3 championships, consistently high performance, new faces, new families, injuries, recoveries, and much camaraderie. At some point someone will get around to giving more details.

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