Bryan Hughes, 14, an eighth-grader at Mayfield Woods Middle School who has played on the soccer association's United Classic team for three years, looks forward to the day when Maryland Mania is based closer to home.
"It'll be great," he said. "I don't get much of a chance to watch and learn from the pros unless I go to a D.C. United game, and I can't do that much."
Bryan's brother, Eric, 11, a member of the association's United Premier team, agrees.
"It'll probably be very exciting," he said.
Ali is honest about soccer players' salary packages.
"It's going to be a long, long time before you see soccer players making a million dollars," he said. "These guys are working-class professionals; they do it for the love of the sport."
Maryland Mania's first game of the season will be played in Raleigh, N.C., against the Raleigh Flyers. The home opener is May 9, when the Mania will play the Charleston, S.C., Battery at UMBC.
Long Reach High School Principal David A. Bruzga reminds parents and guardians that the PTSA back-to-school night for the second term is at 7: 30 tonight.
Remember to bring a copy of your child's schedule.
Pub Date: 2/02/99