American soccer writing, history & data.
The annual meeting of the California Association Football League was held on October 26, 1906 at Croll's Hall in Alameda. Retiring president, Taliesin Evans, presided as chairman and Alexander G. Rhodes, donor of the league pennant, was elected the new president. The sport saw a tremendous influx of players from the Eastern U.S. as well as Europe due to the amount of labor needed to rebuild the region following the great earthquake and fire in April. On November 3, the California Association Football Union held its annual general meeting at the McRitchie residence on 1392 McAllister Street. Taliesin Evans was re-elected president.
Santa Cruz A.C. and Sacramento A.FC. were dropped from the league but the latter club joined the newly-formed Valley League based in Sacramento. The Bay Counties League also returned for a second season.
The five Bay Area clubs returned for the 1906-07 league season. All the team secured grounds. The Oakland Hornets shared the Albion Rovers' home ground at Freeman's Park in Oakland. After spending the prior season in Oakland, the Independents moved to Alameda and shared the Vampires' home venue at the Webster Street cricket grounds. The San Francisco club had originally secured the 7th Avenue and California Street grounds as their home but that fell through and the team played all their matches at the other two grounds.
Scandal erupted over the Oakland Hornets roster caused a rift between the CAFL and CAFU. After their second match the CAFU fined the Hornets for playing captain H.R. Elliott without his amateur registration card. In mid-January, Edgar Pomeroy came out of semi-retirement to play for the Hornets. The CAFU suspended the entire club for 14 days because Pomeroy had played without securing his amateur registration card. The suspension of an entire club for such a transgression had never been imposed. The CAFL thought the punishment overly severe and done in spite. Pomeroy immediately resigned as vice president of the CAFU.
In the wake of the turmoil, the CAFU held a general meeting on January 29, 1907 to adopt a new constitution and by-laws. The changes would have the organization soon renamed as the California Football Association.
After the suspension was lifted, the Oakland Hornets beat the Independents, their nearest competitors, by a 4-1 score. Even though the Vampires beat the Hornets on the last game of the season, the Hornet finished the season with 11 points; one more than both the Independents and Vampires.
The CAFU cup semifinals saw the Hornets knock out the defending champion Independents 3-0 at Freeman's Park on March 31. The cup final was held on April 21 at Freeman's Park. The Vampires scored an upset beating the Hornets 1-0 before 2000 in attendance. The final game of the soccer season was a match to determine second place in the CAFL. On May 5, the Vampires beat the Independents 2-0 at Freeman's Park in the playoff.
On April 9, the CAFL met at Croll's Hotel in Alameda. Championship medals and trophies were presented to the Oakland Hornets for winning the championship the past two seasons. The league was on its most stable financial footing ever having ended the season with a balance of $500, about $1000 more than some previous seasons. On June 15, the CAFU met at Lily Hall on the corner of Lily Avenue and Gough Street. President Taliesin Evans presented medals won in the last two cup competitions. While the previous cup was almost entirely destroyed in the fire, the original manufacturers agreed to replace it with an identical model.
©2022 by Daniel Creel. All rights reserved.