A-LEAGUE WEEK 16 WRAP: MLS vet Cassar debuts for Silverbacks

By Nathaniel Gould

ATLANTA SIGNS MLS VET KEEPER: The Atlanta Silverbacks signed goalkeeper Jeff Cassar last Wednesday and started him in a 2-1 loss on Saturday to the Rochester Rhinos.

Of the teams currently in playoff positions, Atlanta is second in scoring with 41 goals -- first-place Seattle has 60 -- but the Silverbacks' goals-against leaves something to be desired, with 37 goals against, second highest among contenders for playoff spots.

Bryheem Hancock and Cole Burgman had been splitting time in goal before Cassar's arrival.

The 29-year-old Cassar joined the Dallas Burn in MLS's inaugural 1996 season. He spent 1998-2001 with the Miami Fusion. He played in 48 regular-season and five playoff games during his MLS career.

After Miami folded, Cassar had short stints with English Premier League clubs Bolton and Ipswich Town.

HENDERSON ON GOAL TEAR: The Richmond Kickers' Josh Henderson recorded his third straight two-goal game last Friday in a 3-2 overtime win over the Minnesota Thunder. ... Johnny Torres whose four-year MLS career in New England and Miami ended when the Fusion folded after the 2001 season, scored both goals for the Minnesota Thunder in a 2-0 win over the Hampton Roads Mariners. Steve Shak, on loan from MLS's Colorado Rapids, assisted on the first goal in the 15th minute. Torres has six goals and three assists in 15 appearances (11 starts). ...

CHARLESTON CLINCHES: The Charleston Battery, despite losing 2-1 to Rochester on Thursday, became the second team, after Seattle, to clinch one of the A-League's 12 playoff spots.

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