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News from USL

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    PDL News Release

    Friday, May 9, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – The PDL, the most established and respected national U23 men’s league, is pleased to announce the launch of a fall season - PDL+ - commencing in 2015. Designed to supplement the primary PDL summer season, PDL+ will provide existing league members an expanded competition window into late autumn of each year. 

    “The PDL and its member clubs have been the undisputed leaders in the development of American soccer at the pre-professional level over the past two decades by providing a bridge from the youth, college and amateur levels to professional leagues such as USL PRO and Major League Soccer,” USL President Tim Holt said. “In order to continue to serve the needs of aspiring professional players and add value for our PDL clubs amidst the constantly evolving soccer landscape, it is critical to offer new and exciting programs like PDL+ that are aligned with the future direction of the sport and domestic player development.”

    The launch of PDL+ coincides with growing demand in the marketplace for elite programming for professional prospects beyond the summer months and serves to further align with the rapidly expanding USL PRO and its affiliate partner MLS. While the traditional PDL season consists primarily of those players competing at the intercollegiate level, the PDL+ platform is focused on furthering the development and exposure of recent college soccer graduates and elite academy players. 

    Additional details regarding the PDL+ format and structure will be announced in the coming months.

    In recent years, the PDL has played a prominent role in the development of players for professional soccer. Seven members of the 2013 USL PRO All-League First Team were PDL alumni including 2013 USL PRO Most Valuable Player Jose Angulo from Pittsburgh Riverhounds, who scored 15 goals in three PDL seasons prior to turning professional. Others included Pittsburgh’s Matt Dallman, who set a USL PRO record with 12 assists in 2013, and the Richmond Kickers’ Andrew Dykstra, who claimed 2013 Goalkeeper of the Year honors.

    The 2014 MLS SuperDraft saw six former PDL players selected in the top 10, and 25 former PDL and Super-20 League alumni selected overall, continuing the remarkable success of the PDL in helping the development of potential future professionals. In the past five seasons, 162 of the 232 players selected in the SuperDraft have played in the PDL, a remarkable 70 percent of selections.  Further, the past three MLS Rookie of the Year honorees have been PDL alumni, with the Austin Aztex’s Dillon Powers claiming the award in 2013 for the Colorado Rapids to follow Reading United’s C.J. Sapong (Sporting Kansas City) in 2011 and the Chicago Fire U-23’s Austin Berry (Chicago Fire) in 2012.

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    USL PRO Game Report

    Friday, May 9, 2014

    RICHMOND, Va. – The Richmond Kickers defeated Arizona United SC 4-0 on Friday night at City Stadium. Reduced to 10 men inside the first 30 minutes, Arizona held the Kickers scoreless through the first half before conceding a pair of goals on either side of a 30-minute lightning delay. Midfielder George Davis IV and Matthew Delicate opened the scoring, while Christiano Francois scored his first professional goal before  an own goal rounded out the scoreline just before the final whistle.

    The drama of the evening began immediately upon kickoff when an unmarked Shay Spitz collected the ball on the right wing and carried it to the six-yard box.  He sliced a low cross past the unsuspecting United goalkeeper, Evan Newton, and narrowly missed connecting with an onrushing Matthew Delicate as the ball whistled just wide.

    Following a crafty sequence that saw Arizona defender Daniel Antunez back heel a ball to forward Brandon Swartzendruber, whose subsequent header soared just over the crossbar, United’s fortunes turned when they were reduced to 10 men. Midfielder Bradlee Baladez was ejected when he headbutted Spitz after a scuffle over a restart in the 25th minute.

    Fueled by the dramatic exchange, Spitz nearly broke the ice two minutes later when he collected a cross at the top of the box and hit a determined first-time strike over the crossbar. The feisty midfielder forced Newton into action again just before the break when he latched onto a through-ball and fired a rocket on target, but the Arizona goalkeeper made the point-blank save. 

    Despite the disadvantage, United pressed for the opener in first-half stoppage time when Swartzendruber got on the end of a pass before playing it wide to Schillo Tshuma, but he missed the left post to send the teams into the locker room deadlocked.

    The Kickers opened scoring in the 50th minute when Martin and Mike Callahan battled Paolo DelPiccolo to win the ball in the midfield.  The 2-on-1 combination sprung Martin free, and he fed the ball through to Davis at the right edge of the penalty area. Newton was able to get a hand on a low driven shot, but could not stop the momentum as it slipped in at the far post.

    Delicate doubled the score just past the hour-mark when second-half substitute Francois stole the ball in Arizona territory. He played a square ball to defender Taylor Kemp on the left wing, who barreled into the box and lofted a cross to the Kickers all-time leading scorer, who made no mistake with a diving header from eight yards out to carry a 2-0 lead into the 30 minute lightning delay.

    Less than 10 minutes after the hiatus, Francois tallied his first professional goal when he picked up a long ball and raced down the right flank.  Leaving Newton with little chance, he buried a determined shot into the back of the net in the 84th minute.

    In a last ditch effort to pull a goal back, forward Kadeem Dacres fired a shot from 12 yards out but Kickers goalkeeper Joe Willis denied his attempt and cleared the ball back out to midfield. Rookie defender Hugh Roberts collected the loose ball and eluded defenders as he dribbled through traffic. Searching for Jason Yeisley at the back post, he served in a cross that was intercepted by Arizona defender Tyler Ruthven,only for the ball to find the back of the net for an own goal to seal a 4-0 victory for the Kickers.

    The Richmond Kickers kick off U.S. Open Cup action on the road against RVA FC on Wednesday night before embarking on a two-game road trip to Oklahoma City Energy on Friday, May 16 and Chicago Fire Reserves on Sunday, May 18.  The Kickers return to City Stadium one week later to host the Charlotte Eagles on Saturday, May 24 at 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale now at

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    PDL Game Report

    Friday, May 9, 2014

    CINCINNATI, Ohio -- The Cincinnati Dutch Lions FC twice came back from two-goal deficits to claim a 3-3 draw against the River City Rovers in the club's inaugural PDL contest at the Xavier University Soccer Complex on Friday night. Jordan Grant scored twice for Cincinnati, and Dylan Terry twice for the Rovers, but it was Jeff McClure's finish with 10 minutes to go that earned the Dutch Lions a point.

    The Dutch Lions came out positively with good passing and held the majority of possession in the first half. A pass from Cincinnati's Chris Harmon in the sixth minute to McClure led to a long touch and a quick pick up by Rovers goalie Christian Carey.

    The Rovers came right back when in the seventh minute Peter May put a chip over the Dutch Lions defense, which found the foot of Terry, who did not hesitate to put the ball past the Dutch Lions goalkeeper to the right corner of the goal for an early advantage.  

    The Lions were undeterred however and went right back to playing their Dutch possession style game. The ninth minute saw a shot on goal by McClure, but Rovers goalkeeper Christian Carey saved well. Not to be outdone, the Rovers' Ace Gonya made some runs to the goal, followed by hard shots that just missed wide and high. 

    The Rovers doubled their lead after they forced a turnover by the Dutch Lions in the midfield, which caused Cincinnati keeper, Eric Osswald to have to come out to challenge Terry, but he was unable to get a grip on the ball which allowed Terry to put away his second of the night.

    The Dutch Lions quickly hit back at the start of the second half. A build-up from the back allowed the Dutch Lions' Rowin Van Zaanen to find Harmon, who passed out to Grant on the right side for a brilliant shot on the ground to the far-left post and the back of the net in the 48th minute.

    River City restored its two-goal advantage five minutes later as Gonya gently chipped the ball over Oswald after breaking in on goal. Grant would get his second in the 67th minute, however, as he received a pass from Van Zaanen and took it to the goal for a well-placed finish into the right corner of the net.

    The game became a battle of attrition in the midfield for the next 10 minutes, but the Dutch Lions were able to get on even terms in the 80th minute as McClure dribbled to the goal and fired one into the back of the net. River City wasted no time getting down to the other end and M’fera blasted one just over and left of the Cincinnati goal as the visitors pushed to regain the lead, but neither side was able to put away a late chance as each took a point.

    “What I liked is the way we fought back," Dutch Lions coach Terry Nicholl said. "We made a few subtle changes and I think we put value in. I think we played well enough in the second half to consider it a decent performance. Because the ball was up and down the field, it was a fun and exciting game for the fans to watch.”

    Cincinnati (0-0-1) travels to take on the River City Rovers (0-0-1) again on Friday, May 16 at 7:30pm in Louisville at Woehrle Field. The Dutch Lions remain on the road on Saturday, May 24th as the side visits the Southern West Virginia King's Warriors at East River Soccer Complex before they return home to the Xavier University Soccer Complex on Friday, May 30th at 7 p.m. to play the West Virginia Chaos. For season and individual game tickets, visit the Dutch Lions website.

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  • 05/09/14--23:30: Lions Edge Out Riverhounds
  • USL PRO Game Report

    Friday, May 9, 2014

    PITTSBURGH -- Orlando City SC extented its winning streak to six games as it took a 1-0 victory against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds in a tightly-contested match on Friday night at Highmark Stadium. 

    The match will likely be remembered most for a controversial call in the 75th minute. Trailing 1-0, the Riverhounds had a great opportunity after some quality combination play down the left side, a ball was sent to the middle of the box for midfielder Matt Dallman. As Dallman went for the ball, he was tackled by Orlando's Yordany Alvarez, who appeared to not make contact with the ball.

    Referee Kevin Terry Jr. blew the whistle and appeared to signal for a foul and a penalty kick, and showed a yellow card to Alvarez. As the Orlando City players disputed the call, Terry Jr. checked with his lineman for his point of view. After a lengthy discussion, the call was overturned, and a drop ball was ensued about 12 yards from the goal.

    "I've never seen a call (like that) in my life. Somehow, I've never seen that," said Riverhounds coach Justin Evans. "He (Terry Jr.) said he didn't see it clearly. But he went to the linesman, who was in the dark."

    The Riverhounds played strongly through most of the match, able to keep possession for long stretches against the top team in USL PRO, which led to some quality chances as Evans implemented a 4-1-4-1 formation.Under pressure from the Pittsburgh attack, Orlando finished the match with 19 fouls. The Riverhounds couldn't take advantage of multiple free kick opportunities.

    Orlando took the early lead in the 14th minute as Kevin Molino chipped a shot over Riverhounds goalkeeper Michael Lisch after receiving a through-ball from Dennis Chin on a quick move upfield. The goal was Molino's fifth of the season, which gave the Trinidad & Tobago international a league-leading 14 points.

    "That's why Kevin Molino is a dangerous player," said Evans. "We just got out of shape for that one minute. It was a bad giveaway, and when you do that against a team like this, they usually put it away, and they did."

    The Riverhounds were able to create some hardship on the Lions defense in the first half, with 6 shots. Under some pressure from the Riverhounds forwards Joseph Ngwenya and Jose Angulo, Orlando was called for nine fouls in the first 45 minutes, as midfielder Anthony Pulis was responsible for three of them.

    With the defeat, the Riverhounds (0-3-3) remain at the bottom of the USL PRO standings. Earning another three points with the road win, Orlando City (6-0-2) currently has a three-point edge over the second-place LA Galaxy II at the top of the table.

    The Riverhounds will return to action on Wednesday night at Highmark Stadium in the second round of Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup against the New York Red Bull U-23s.

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    OKC Energy FC News Release --

    Friday, May 9, 2014

    OKLAHOMA CITY – OKC Energy FC hosts the Orange County Blues on Saturday evening at 7 p.m. CT at Pribil Stadium. Team officials today announced that the game is officially sold out. Official sell out is 3,741. This is the second consecutive sellout for Energy FC. The game will air live via YouTube Live and can be heard locally on 96.1 FM KXY.


    The box office at Bishop McGuinness will release a limited number of obstructed view seats and standing room only sections beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.  Prices for the obstructed view tickets start at $13.  Tickets can only be purchased at the box office at Bishop McGuinness Catholic High School in person.

    Energy FC enters Saturday’s game with a 2-4-0 record with shutout wins against Orange County (2-0) and Arizona United SC (4-0). Energy FC has dropped three straight games, including two to defending USL PRO champion Orlando City. Orange County fell 2-0 to the Charlotte Eagles Thursday evening.

    The festivities begin at 4 p.m. CT at the Chesapeake Energy lawn. Beverages for purchase, along with family-friendly activities, are available at the lawn for fans until 6:30 p.m. Admission to the lawn event is free.

    Parking for all Energy FC home games is available at the Chesapeake Energy parking garage #1 south of NW 63rd and Western. A shuttle is available for fans at the lawn party to the stadium beginning at 5 p.m. for $1 per person each direction. Complete details regarding parking and shuttle services can be found at

    Stadium gates open at 5:30 p.m. CT. Programs are also available free of charge. The box office opens at 1 p.m. and remains open through the duration of the game for fans wishing to buy tickets to future Energy FC games.

    Fans are asked to refer to the FAQs at for information regarding prohibited items, inclement weather and other necessary information related to attending Saturday night’s contest.

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    USL PRO Game Report

    Saturday, May 10, 2014

    OKLAHOMA CITY – Gibson Bardsley scored the match's only goal in the 90th minute to lift Orange County Blues FC past OKC Energy FC 1-0 on Saturday night in front of another sold out crowd at Pribil Stadium. Bardsley's goal was his first of the season, and handed OKC its second loss on home turf this season.

    Energy FC had a chance early to take the lead when Kyle Greig headed just over the crossbar in the eighth minute, but the Blues also had opportunities as OKC defender Mark Howard blocked a pair of shots, including one by Bardsley, two minutes apart midway through the half. Howard made another timely intervention just before halftime as his challenge denied Bardsley a scoring chance.

    OKC's Adda Djeziri had a pair of opportunities in the opening 15 minutes of the second half, but wasn't able to find his range as he missed the target on both. Bardsley continued to threaten for the Blues as he forced Energy FC goalkeeper Jon Kempin into a save in the 68th minute, and two minutes later Kempin had to be sharp again as Steven Okai put a good free kick on goal, only for the Sporting Kansas City loanee to save.

    Energy FC pushed forward positively in the final 10 minutes, and David Leighty had a good effort saved by Blues goalkeeper Josh Ford in the 81st minute. Adnan Gabeljic also went close with three minutes to go as his header was saved, but Orange County struck in the final minute as a long ball downfield by Ford found Bardsley, who chased down the long ball and lifted his finish past Kempin for the winning goal. 

    Energy FC is back in action at 7:30 p.m. CT on Wednesday night when it takes on the Tulsa Athletics in the second round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

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    PDL Game Report

    Saturday, May 10, 2014

    AUSTIN, Texas -- The Austin Aztex (1-0-0) took a commanding four-goal lead in the first half on the way to a 5-0 victory against the Houston Dutch Lions in front of 1,748 fans at House Park on Saturday night.

    The Aztex took a quick two-goal lead in the first half to set the tone. In the 10th minute, Walker Hume found fellow defender Cruz Oronos running uncovered down the right sideline and hit a long pass. Oronos raced to the ball and hit a cross into the penalty area, where Chuy Cortes hit the ball into the back of the net.

    The Aztex doubled their advantage five minutes later as midfielder Tony Rocha hit a pass into the penalty area from the left side. Dutch Lions goalkeeper Emmanuel Frias was first to the ball, but had difficulty handling it and dropped the ball. Aztex forward Sito Seoane was in front of Frias, and took the opportunistic drop to fire home for a 2-0 lead.

    Austin made it 4-0 later in the first half. In the 37th minute, Rocha was fouled near the halfway line. Andres Cuero showed good awareness to streak up the middle of the field, where Rocha hit him with a well-placed pass. Cuero took the pass in stride for a one-on-one with Frias and hit it past the goalkeeper.

    In the 40th minute, Rocha put the game on ice with a strong individual effort as he took the ball into the penalty area and worked across the top of the box. Rocha spun past two defenders for a clean look at goal and struck the ball past Frias.

    “I think the tempo of the first half was fantastic,” Aztex head coach Manuel Buentello said. “Not only did we impose our style of play on the opponent, but we also got what we wanted which were goals."

    Midfielder Adam Black, a newcomer for the Aztex who scored 11 goals in 12 games for Oklahoma City FC in 2013, scored his debut goal for the Aztex in the 65th minute. Black took a corner kick for the Aztex and hit a dangerous ball into the area. The ball took a slight deflection on its way into the net.

    The rest of the game was physical as both teams saw a player receive a caution. Dutch Lions midfielder Devid Perez received a caution for a physical foul in the 69th minute while Aztex goalkeeper Devin Cook received a caution in the 77th minute for dissent.

    Aside from the caution, Cook and the Aztex defense paired up in a dominant effort to retain the shutout victory. The team as a whole pressed the Dutch Lions to force turnovers and prevent any clean shooting opportunities. The Aztex limited the Dutch Lions to only five shots throughout the game.

    The Dutch Lions did come close to finding the back of the net in the 84th minute from a free kick when forward Joe Jackson got his head on the ball for a dangerous shot, but his effort went over the crossbar.

    With the win, the Aztex open their PDL Championship defense on the right foot. However, this is a new season and the players from last year’s squad have put last year’s accomplishments behind them as they work toward the next goal, taking the season game-by-game.

    “I think we still have the drive to win,” Aztex midfielder Tony Rocha said. “Teams that usually win championships don’t come out as hungry the next year, but our hunger is still there.”

    The Aztex return to action on Wednesday night when they host the NTX Rayados in the second round of the 2014 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The winner of Wednesday’s match will advance to the third round to play the San Antonio Scorpions in San Antonio on May 28.

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    USL PRO Game Report

    Saturday, May 10, 2014

    CHARLESTON S.C. -- The Wilmington Hammerheads took their second road victory of the season as they defeated the Charleston Battery 1-0 on Saturday night at Blackbaud Stadium in front of a crowd of 4,487. Hammerheads midfielder Paul Nicholson scored the lone goal in the fourth minute to lead Wilmington to victory.

    The goal came after Charleston defender Colin Falvey tangled with Wilmington’s Sammy Ochoa just outside the penalty area, and the referee awarded a free kick. Wilmington midfielder Danny Lovitz bent his shot around the wall, and Charleston goalkeeper Odisnel Cooper managed to get down and tip the ball away, but Nicholson was first to react to the loose ball and drove his shot home from an acute angle.

    Charleston’s best chance to level the game in the first half came in the 25th minute after a pass was slipped through to forward Adam Mena.  Mena got his shot away but the ball was blocked wide by the lunging tackle of defender Ashani Fairclough.

    In the 49th minute the Battery threatened again after defender Quinton Griffith beat his man and broke to the byline. Griffith picked out midfielder Andre Lewis at the near post but Lewis’ shot was saved by Wilmington goalkeeper Quillan Roberts.

    The game changed on the hour-nark after Wilmington’s Manby Aparicio was ejected for receiving a second yellow card, which gave the Battery a man-advantage for the final 30 minutes. Wilmington retreated as the Battery pressure built and Charleston created several good chances.  Substitute forward Haviel Cordoves hit the crossbar with a stinging shot from distance in the 77th minute, and then five minutes later Quinton Griffith saw his left-footed drive deflected over the bar by a Wilmington defender.

    With time running out the Battery finally carved out a quality chance after the ball was set to striker Mamadou Diouf 10 yards from goal. The rookie drilled a shot at the goal, but Roberts was well positioned and parried the ball away to safety.

    The Battery’s next match is at Blackbaud Stadium on Tuesday night against the Panama City Beach Pirates in the second round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup; gates open at 6 p.m., with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. The Battery and Hammerheads will meet again next Saturday night at Legion Stadium to complete their home-and-home series.

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    PDL Game Report

    Saturday, May 10, 2014

    LAS VEGAS -- FC Tucson still hasn't played a full match of quality soccer, according to Head Coach Rick Schantz, but its strong start was enough for the club to notch its first win of the season, 2-1, over the Las Vegas Mobsters on Saturday night at Peter Johann Memorial Field.

    "The first 20 minutes, I thought we were dynamite," Schantz said. "We created some great chances."

    At the top of that attack was first-year FC Tucson player Tommy Ramos. The forward found himself sprinting in behind the defense on several occasions. He had at least three different runs on the net with a desperate defender chasing after him, and converted one of them into the match's first goal in the 41st minute.

    His partnership with fellow forward Odaine Sinclair already looked in midseason form as Mobsters defenders struggled to dispossess Sinclair. That gave Ramos space to get behind the defense in dangerous positions on the pitch. His speed also made him a danger when the ball barely passed midfield. On two different occasions, captain Ricardo Velazco found Ramos with a deep diagonal ball from 40 yards out. On one of those instances a highlight-worthy save prevented Ramos from securing his second.

    "It feels great," Ramos said. "I haven't played in awhile. I was on [Phoenix FC] last year and didn't get invited back this year. So I'm just really trying to prove myself and I want to work my hardest for this team."

    FC Tucson's second goal of the match also came from an FC Tucson first timer: Clark Phillips. In the 59th minute, Velazco sent an in-swinging corner into the middle of the penalty area. Phillips dragged his defender out, then created enough separation to jump up and slam the ball into the back of the net with a header.

    And less than 20 minutes into his FC Tucson career, Phillips already knew to run toward the Cactus Pricks, FC Tucson's supporters group, who made the trip.

    "I thought the Pricks were great," Phillips said. "They were loud the entire game, supportive the entire time and really took me in. Even though it was my first game and first appearance."

    Despite the momentum created after taking a 2-0 lead, FC Tucson again struggled defensively in the final 20 minutes of the match. That led to a Las Vegas goal in the 63rd minute. Goalkeeper Dallas Jaye made a great near point-blank save but the rebound found an unmarked Sam Bernal, who had an open net on front of him to shoot on. He didn't miss and cut the lead to 2-1.

    The Mobsters continued to press, especially late in the match. In the 86th minute, Danny Musofski's right-to-left header hit the far left post as Jaye dove into the side netting. Then in stoppage time, Mustofski had another near miss, as he found the ball after a last-minute corner only to send his shot just high and wide of the far-left upper corner.

    "We made it difficult again for ourselves in the last 20 minutes," Schantz said. "At least we learned our lesson against BYU and tactically we were kind of prepared."

    FC Tucson's win is the first of the 2014 season. The team travels back to Tucson on Sunday to begin preparing for its PDL home opener against OC Pateadores Blues on Saturday, May 17 at 7:30 p.m.

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    Long Island Rough Riders News Release -

    Saturday, May 10, 2014

    PLAINVIEW, N.Y. - The Long Island Rough Riders opened the 2014 W-League season with a  hard-fought 0-0 draw at home against their longtime rivals, the New York Magic.  

    The first half began with a great save by Rough Riders goalkeeper Diana Poulin in the sixth minute of play. Poulin added three more saves in the half as the teams traded scoring opportunities.

    In the second half the Rough Riders came out with more intensity, dominated in possession and had some good chances. Their best opportunities came in the last two minutes of play where they had four great scoring chances, only to come up short. Long Island outshot the Magic 13-6 in the match, with midfielder Casie Ludemann leading the way with three attempts.

    The Rough Riders defense, led by Susan Alber-Weber, Georgia Kearney-Perry and Jenna Peveraro had a strong all-around showing, not allowing a shot in the second half. Serina Kashimmoto and Jadranka Pavicevic led the Magic with two shots apiece.

    New York's defense was anchored by Shani Nakhid-Schuster, Lorina White and Corinne Brady, with keeper Sam Depken called upon to make five saves to preserve the shutout.

    The Magic are on the road again next Saturday at the New Jersey Wildcats, while the Rough Riders will host the Wildcats on Sunday.

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    Portland Timbers U-23s News Release --

    Monday, May 12, 2014

    PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers U-23s today announced their season-opening roster for the 2014 PDL campaign. Of the 22 players announced, 18 are newcomers to the Timbers U-23s program.

    Under the guidance of head coach Jim Rilatt, the Timbers U-23s have added players representing 15 different colleges, including three each from University of North Carolina and Virginia Commonwealth University. The University of Akron, University of Louisville and Creighton University are each represented by two players.

    Returning to the Timbers U-23s for the 2014 season are defender Evyn Hewett, forward Reed McKenna, midfielder Jose Ribas and midfielder Will Seymore. New additions to the squad include Miguel Aguilar, Fatai Alashe, Kharlton Belmar, Dennis Castillo, Louis Cross, Kenny Cunningham, Earl Edwards, Devon Fisher, Kyle Fisher, Sam Gainford, Zach Hamer, Omar Holness, Justin Luthy, Jordan McCrary, Brendan Moore, Nolan Moore, Lucas Stauffer and Ben Strong.

    Miguel Aguilar (Sacramento, Calif.) has recorded 11 goals in 53 career appearances for the University of San Francisco during three seasons. A three-time All-West Coast Conference second team selection, Aguilar was co-leading scorer for the Dons in 2013 with three goals.

    Fatai Alashe (Northville, Mich.) played his junior season at Michigan State University last fall and has appeared in 63 career matches for the Spartans, tallying six goals and six assists. In 2013, Alashe was named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team after helping Michigan State earn a berth in the NCAA tournament and was named the National Player of the Week on Oct. 1, 2013. As a sophomore in 2012, Alashe helped lead the Spartans to the Big Ten championship, assisting the winning goal in overtime.

    Kharlton Belmar (Virginia Beach, Va.) finished his junior season at Virginia Commonwealth University as the team’s leading goal scorer with eight goals, including three game-winners. An All-Atlantic 10 Conference first team selection and an All-Mid Atlantic Region second team pick in 2013, Belmar has registered 14 goals and five assists in 55 career appearances for the Rams.

    Dennis Castillo (San Jose, Costa Rica) was named an NSCAA All-Mid Atlantic Region first team selection as a sophomore in 2013 and has registered 12 goals in 39 career appearances as a defender for the Rams. In 2012, Castillo earned All-Atlantic 10 second team honors.

    Louis Cross (Lancashire, England) was a key contributor to one of the better defensive units in the country in 2013 as a freshman at the University of Akron. A former member of the Blackpool FC academy in England, Cross made 17 appearances (13 starts) during his freshman season for the Zips.

    Kenny Cunningham (Brecksville, Ohio) has scored six goals in 50 career matches across three seasons at Ohio State University. The 6-2 forward earn Big Ten All-Freshman Team honors in 2011 after registering two goals and two assists in 15 appearances. As a junior in 2013, Cunningham attempted 22 shots, ranking second among all Buckeyes players.

    Earl Edwards (San Diego, Calif.) earned first team All Pac-12 Conference honors as a junior, starting all 20 matches for UCLA, making 73 saves and logging a 1.13 goals-against average while helping lead the Bruins to the third round of the NCAA tournament in 2013. Edwards posted seven shutouts to take his career tally to 11 and has compiled a 23-7-7 overall record in three seasons. He has served as team captain for back-to-back seasons in 2012 and 2013.

    Devon Fisher (Chesapeake, Va.) tallied three goals and one assist in 21 games as a sophomore in 2013, earning NSCAA All-Mid Atlantic Region third team honors for Virginia Commonwealth University. Following a redshirt season in 2011, Fisher tied for second among Rams players with six goals during the 2012 season.

    Kyle Fisher (Easley, S.C.) started all 21 games for Clemson University during his sophomore season in 2013. A defender, Fisher helped the Tigers register eight shutouts, while also scoring two game-winning goals. Fisher has appeared in all 41 matches for the team since 2012, earning All-Atlantic Coast Conference third team honors last season.

    Sam Gainford (Whitehaven, England) was a member of the Liverpool Academy program before enrolling at the University of Akron in 2013. A member of the Liverpool Academy since he was 10-years-old, Gainford featured for the club’s U-18 side as well as the Liverpool U-21 side in several NextGen Series matches.

    Zach Hamer (Spokane, Wash.) joins the Timbers U-23s after recording one goal and two assists in 19 matches for Gonzaga University as a junior in 2013. Hamer, who earned West Coast Conference All-Academic honors in 2012, has scored four goals in 56 career matches for the Bulldogs.

    Evyn Hewett (La Palma, Calif.) returns to the Timbers U-23s for a third consecutive season after playing his junior collegiate season with San Diego State University. Hewett has made 25 regular-season PDL appearances for the Timbers U-23s since 2012 and has played in 49 matches for the Aztecs in three seasons, recording two goals and five assists.

    Omar Holness (Kingston, Jamaica) appeared in all 20 matches, recording two goals and three assists for the University of North Carolina during his freshman season in 2013. Holness has gained extensive youth national team experience with Jamaica. A member of the Jamaica U-17 National Team squad that qualified for the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup, Holness captained the side in group-stage matches against Japan, Argentina and France. In 2013, Holness was named to Jamaica’s roster for the CONCACAF U-20 Championship, scoring a goal in a 4-1 win over Puerto Rico in the opening group-stage match on Feb. 19, 2013, in Puebla, Mexico.

    Justin Luthy (Dublin, Ohio) graduated from Boston College in 2013 after concluding his collegiate career with 80 appearances in goal for the Eagles. Luthy finished his time at Boston College as the program’s all-time career leader in wins (43) and minutes played (7,400), while ranking second all-time in shutouts (25), fourth in saves (301) and logging a 43-25-11 career record and a 1.06 goals-against average.

    Jordan McCrary (Marietta, Ga.) featured in 19 matches for a University of North Carolina defense that ranked sixth in the nation with a 0.61 goals-against average, allowing just 13 goals in 20 games and logging 10 shutouts. Representing the U.S. at the U-17 level, McCrary was called into the U-20 Men’s National Team in 2012.

    Reed McKenna (San Diego, Calif.) returns to the Timbers U-23s for a second straight season in 2014. Playing his first two college seasons at UCLA, McKenna joined UC-Santa Barbara in 2013 and appeared in 20 matches (6 starts) while recording one goal and one assist.

    Brendan Moore (Atlanta) played his junior season at the University of North Carolina last fall and recorded 10 shutouts in 20 matches for the Tar Heels. Starting every match of the season, Moore stopped 54 shots while helping lead UNC to the second round of the NCAA tournament.

    Nolan Moore (New Westminster, B.C.) joined the University of Louisville in 2013 after two season with Cal Poly. Moore recorded two goals in 18 matches for the Cardinals, helping the team reach the second round of the NCAA tournament. Moore made 27 appearances in two years at Cal Poly.

    Jose Ribas (Guayaquil, Ecuador) returns to the Timbers U-23s after playing his junior season at Creighton University in 2013. Ribas started 19 matches for the Bluejays, recording a team-high six assists while earning All-BIG EAST second team honors. Ribas appeared in 14 games for the Timbers U-23s during the 2013 PDL season, tallying one goal.

    Will Seymore (Soham, England) returns to the Timbers U-23s for a third season in 2014 following his junior season at Oregon State University. Seymore finished third on Beavers with six points (2g, 2a), while appearing in all 19 matches for Oregon State.

    Lucas Stauffer (Owensboro, Ky.) is committed to play collegiately at Creighton for the 2014 season after playing for Danish club Vejle Boldklub’s Under-19 side in Denmark. Stauffer has been a member of the U.S. National Futsal Team since 2011 and was a member of the team’s roster for the 2012 CONCACAF Futsal Championship.

    Midfielder Ben Strong (Mendham, N.J.) played two years at Virginia Tech before transferring to Louisville, where he had to sit out the 2013 season due to NCAA transfer rules. Strong started 39 games during two seasons with Virginia Tech, recording two goals and three assists. He led all field players in minutes played (1,770) during his freshman year in 2011, earning Rookie of the Year honors for the Hokies.

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    Braddock Road Stars Elite News Release

    Monday, May 12, 2014

    FAIRFAX, Va. - In preparation for their inaugural W-League season, the Braddock Road Stars Elite have announced the signing of U20 U.S. Women's National Team pair Carlyn Baldwin and Kaleigh Riehl. Both are also members of one of the top youth teams in the country, BRYC ’95 Elite, which won the 2012 US Youth Soccer National Championship, competed in the 2013 National Championships and will return for the 2014 edition in July. 

    Both players were instrumental in leading the ’95 Elite team to win the USYS U17 and U18 National League titles. 

    In addition to her time with the U18 and U20 US National Teams, Baldwin has had experience at the highest level training with the Washington Spirit and Olympique Lyonnais of France.  The playmaking midfielder from Oakton, Virginia will attend the University of Tennessee in the fall. 

    “I’m really excited to play in the W-League because it’s a competitive environment that will help me prepare for Tennessee and the U-20s” Baldwin said. 

    With a verbal commitment to Penn State University, Riehl was a mainstay in the backline for the U18 U.S. WNT.  The high school junior from Fairfax Station, Virginia captained the U18s game against France in the Ten Nations Tournament in La Manga, Spain.  

    “I am incredibly proud to have two players who I have watched grow up for the past 10 years excel at the highest level,” said Larry Best, coach of the W-League squad and the BRYC ’95 Elite.  “These two young ladies have been great role models for the younger players in the club who aspire to play at the highest level.”

    Braddock Road will play in a tough Northeastern conference in its inaugural season.  The teams opens its season on Saturday, May 17 against the Washington Spirit Reserves at 3 p.m. at the Maryland Soccerplex in Germantown, Maryland. 

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    U.S. Socccer & Major League Soccer News Release

    Monday, May 12, 2014

    CHICAGO - U.S. Soccer and Major League Soccer have signed new television and media rights partnerships with ESPN, FOX Sports and Univision Deportes, which will televise U.S. Men's and Women's National Team, and MLS matches through the end of 2022. The announcement was made today in New York by U.S. Soccer CEO/General Secretary Dan Flynn, MLS Commissioner Don Garber, ESPN, Inc. President and Disney Media Networks Co-Chairman John Skipper, FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2 General Manager and Chief Operating Officer David Nathanson and Univision Deportes President Juan Carlos Rodriguez.

    All three networks will televise both U.S. Men's and Women's National Team matches. ESPN and FOX Sports 1 will split the English-language Men's National Team broadcast package of approximately 10 games per year, and will likewise share the schedule of Women's National Team games. Univision Deportes is the exclusive Spanish language home of U.S. Soccer and will broadcast all of the U.S. Men's National Team games, plus a minimum of four Women's National Team matches each year throughout the duration of the deal.

    "We are extremely pleased to have extended our partnerships with ESPN, FOX Sports and Univision," said U.S. Soccer Federation President Sunil Gulati. "The commitment made by our television partners to broadcast such a wide range and quantity of games demonstrates the growing demand for soccer in our country and provides a platform for our growing fan base to follow the game both for club and country."

    For the first time in Major League Soccer's history, all three television partners will feature an MLS Match of the Week, providing soccer fans throughout the country with a destination day and time for each network. The Univision family of networks will televise a game of the week on Friday evenings and a wrap-up show on Sundays, while ESPN and FOX Sports 1 will televise back-to-back MLS matches on Sundays at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. ET, respectively. More than 115 MLS matches will be televised annually on the three networks, with each U.S.-based MLS club scheduled to appear a minimum of one time per season on each partner's network.

    "We are honored to partner with ESPN, FOX and Univision to form the most comprehensive U.S. media rights partnership in the history of soccer in our country," said Commissioner Garber. "The commitment from our television partners in terms of structure, length and magnitude is unprecedented, and these new partnerships are another strong indicator of the league's continued growth and the overall fan interest in our sport."

    As part of the new partnership, U.S. Soccer and MLS will provide enhanced digital rights to ESPN, Univision and Fox Sports, including an agreement with ESPN to distribute MLS' out-of-market package via ESPN platforms and devices. The league's out-of-market package, currently serviced through the MLS Live and MLS Direct Kick packages, will be available to a wider audience via ESPN3, ESPN's live multiscreen sports network currently in more than 92 million homes, and WatchESPN, to fans who receive their video or internet subscription from an affiliated provider. The new out-of-market package will feature hundreds of MLS matches each year. The new agreements also will include broad promotional support for the games from all network partners.

    ESPN Networks

    • ESPN and Fox Sports 1 will share all U.S. Soccer matches.
    • ESPN will broadcast a minimum of 34 regular season games, on an exclusive basis, on Sundays at 5 p.m. ET primarily on ESPN2.
    • ESPN and Fox Sports will share MLS Cup Playoff matches outside of two Univision games.
    • MLS Cup will alternate each year between ESPN and Fox Sports.
    • The AT&T MLS All-Star Game will alternate each year between ESPN and Fox Sports.
    • ESPN3 will carry the matches in MLS' out-of-market package.
    • ESPN Radio and ESPN Deportes Radio networks have the rights to broadcast MLS matches.
    • ESPN obtains digital rights across all platforms and devices for the games it televises.

    "ESPN remains firmly committed to world-class soccer and this agreement underscores our belief that this is an ascendant sports property," said Skipper. "We are proud to continue our longstanding relationship with U.S. Soccer and MLS. The broad media rights we have acquired, including enhanced digital rights, will benefit all our platforms."

    Fox Sports

    • ESPN and FOX Sports 1 will split all U.S. Soccer matches.
    • FOX Sports will broadcast a minimum of 34 regular season games, on an exclusive basis, on Sundays at 7 p.m. ET primarily on FOX Sports 1.
    • FOX Sports 1 and ESPN will share MLS Cup Playoff matches outside of two Univision games.
    • MLS Cup will alternate each year between FOX Sports and ESPN.
    • The AT&T MLS All-Star Game will alternate each year between FOX Sports and ESPN.
    • FOX Sports obtains digital rights across all platforms and devices for the games it televises, including its FOX Sports GO mobile app and for desktops.
    • FOX Sports obtains digital highlight rights for MLS's out-of-market package via FOX Sports digital platforms
    • FOX Sports Radio network has the opportunity to broadcast MLS matches.
    • Opportunity to broadcast the MLS SuperDraft and other marquee MLS events.

    "This groundbreaking deal represents a giant leap forward in the exposure for, and the commitment to, soccer in the U.S.," said Nathanson. "Not only are we making a significant financial commitment, but we also plan to mobilize FOX's substantial promotional resources to raise awareness and grow the fan base for our nation's premier soccer league and its National teams."


    • All U.S. Soccer Men's National Team matches, including a minimum of four U.S. Women's National Team matches each year over the duration of the deal.
    • Minimum of 34 regular season games, on an exclusive basis, on Friday evenings either at 7 p.m. ET or 11 p.m. ET primarily on UniMás.
    • Two MLS Cup Playoff matches per season, on an exclusive basis, during the knockout round.
    • The AT&T MLS All-Star Game and MLS Cup, exclusively in Spanish on Univision.
    • Exclusive MLS matches on the Univision networks will include second audio program (SAP), providing viewers the option of watching games in English. English audio also will be available for matches televised on Univision's digital platforms.
    • Univision Deportes Network (UDN), Univision's 24 hour sports network, will feature five to seven consecutive Friday doubleheaders in May and June that will be surrounded by two hours of MLS ancillary programming.
    • UDN will televise a weekly MLS wrap-up program and a condensed MLS match of the week each Sunday.
    • Univision obtains digital rights across all platforms and mobile devices for the games it televises.

    "Soccer is the No. 1 sport for Hispanic-Americans and we are proud to continue our longstanding partnership with both MLS and U.S. Soccer," said Rodriguez. "We are excited to bring the Hispanic audience together around this passionate sport. I am optimistic that our comprehensive partnership will accelerate the growth of soccer even further over the next decade."

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    USL Feature

    Monday, May 12, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – U.S. Men’s National Team coach Jürgen Klinsmann announced his initial 30-man squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil on Monday, with nine of the players selected having competed in the USL, from the professional ranks to the Super Y-League.

    Leading the selections is goalkeeper Tim Howard, now of Everton, who began his professional career with the North Jersey Imperials before making the jump to Major League Soccer. Capped 97 times by the United States, Howard is set to become just the fourth player on the roster to reach three digits this summer.

    Guzan, who has served as Howard’s backup and had another strong campaign for Aston Villa this past fall, completed for the Chicago Fire U-23 in the PDL. While with the Fire in 2004, Guzan earned the league’s Goalkeeper of the Year award as he led the side to an undefeated regular-season and recorded a 0.388 goals-against average and eight shutouts in 13 appearances.

    Other former PDL award winners on the squad include 2012 PDL All-League selection DeAndre Yedlin, who starred for the Sounders FC U-23 as the side claimed the Western Conference title two years ago. 2006 All-Eastern Conference selection Geoff Cameron, now with Stoke City, had four goals and an assist in 16 games for the Rhode Island Stingrays.

    Forward Jozy Altidore was among six forwards named, with the former Super Y-League standout for Ft. Lauderdale Schulz Academy aiming to continue his outstanding form for the U.S. in 2013. The Sunderland striker had eight goals and two assists in 14 appearances last year, and will go into his second World Cup aiming to notch his first goal on soccer’s biggest stage.

    Other former PDL standouts to earn selection to Klinsmann’s squad include the Columbus Crew’s Michael Parkhurst, a former member of IMG Bradenton Academy in 2003, and he is joined in defense by the San Jose Earthquakes’ Clarence Goodson, who made 12 appearances for the Boulder Rapids U-23s in 2003, and Seattle Sounders FC’s Brad Evans, who competed for the Orange County Blue Star.

    Rounding out the group is Sporting Kansas City’s Graham Zusi, who made 10 appearances for the Central Florida Kraze in 2005. An MLS Best XI selection in 2013, Zusi will aim to reach the same heights for the U.S. as he did in 2013 this summer after recording two goals and two assists in 13 appearances last year.

    World Cup training camp begins on Wednesday in Carson, Calif., with three pre-tournament scrimmages set to be held at Candlestick Park on May 27 against Azerbaijan, at Red Bull Arena against Turkey on June 1, and at Everbank Field on June 7 against Nigeria. The United States will then name its final 23-man roster prior to its opening game of the 2014 World Cup on June 16 against Ghana, at the Estadio das Dunas in Natal, Brazil.

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    Ottawa Fury FC News Release -

    Monday, May 12, 2014

    OTTAWA, Ont. - With their 15th season set to kick off May 24 against the Quebec Dynamo ARSQ, Ottawa Fury FC announced its first five signings as Head Coach Dom Oliveri added five internationally-capped Canadians to his roster for the upcoming W-League campaign.

    Returning to the club from last season are Shelina Zadorsky, Christabel Oduro, Bryanna McCarthy, Ashley Lawrence and Kadeisha Buchanan, who recently starred in Canada's 1-1 draw with the United States on May 8. 

    Zadorsky, 21, picked up her first international cap for Canada in January of last year against South Korea, and was named to the Big Ten's All-Conference team after consistent standout performances for Michigan during her senior year in 2013.

    "We're very happy to have Shelina back - she played significant minutes for us in 2013, and we're extremely happy to have her anchor our defense for another year," Oliveri said.

    Zadorsky was an every-day defender for Oliveri in 2013, logging the fifth-most minutes on the team.

    Oliveri has bolstered the Fury's offense immensely with the signings of forward Oduro and defender McCarthy. Oduro, a native of Brampton, Ontario, has featured many times for various Canadian national youth squads and has five caps to her name with the Canadian senior women's national team. Standing just 5-foot-3, the speedy forward excelled throughout her collegiate career at the University of Memphis, capping it with an All-Conference selection in her 2013 senior season. 

    McCarthy, a native of Ajax, Ontario, was a defensive stalwart in her collegiate career with the West Virginia Mountaineers. During her junior year in 2011, McCarthy busted the myth that defenders can't help out offensively, as she led West Virginia with nine assists. The versatile McCarthy spent time last season with the NWSL's New York Flash.

    "Christabel and Bryanna are both players we've been trying to bring to Ottawa for a number of years," Oliveri said. "Both possess tremendous pace and attacking abilities; we will definitely look to them to contribute offensively."

    Both Oduro and McCarthy bring significant W-League experience to Ottawa - a squad that will have no shortage of depth or experience in 2014.

    Continuing with the West Virginia theme, the Fury will also feature two current Mountaineers in Lawrence and Buchanan.  Lawrence, a midfielder from Toronto, Ontario, tied for fourth in Mountaineers scoring during her freshman year in 2013.  Lawrence has also made seven appearances as a substitute for the senior women's national team, bringing value international experience to Oliveri's squad. 

    Buchanan, arguably the most high-profile signing of all, is a defender who has already appeared 14 times for the senior women's national team at the young age of 18.  The Mountaineer center back started every match of her freshman season for West Virginia in 2013, capturing a Big-12 conference championship in the process. 

    Buchanan has featured regularly in Canadian national team manager John Herdman's starting XI since first-choice centre back Lauren Sesselman went down with an injury.  She has taken the opportunity and run with it, producing excellent defensive performances for Herdman's national side against the likes of Abby Wambach and the United States.  Buchanan's experience against the world's best on the international stage will help bolster an already superlative Fury defensive core.

    "Kadeisha and Ashley join us after very successful freshman years at West Virginia University," Oliveri said.  "We're glad to play a role in their development, as we believe these players represent the future generation of players for the Canadian national team."

    With plenty of NCAA and international experience, Oliveri is hoping the players will help the Fury bounce back this season after a heartbreaking defeat in penalties at last year's W-League Central Conference Final against the Laval Comets.

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    PDL Feature

    Tuesday, May 13, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – During the first two months of the Major League Soccer season, Chicago Fire Homegrown Player Harry Shipp has been consistently regarded as the class of the current rookie crop.

    Photo courtesy Chicago-Fire.comUntil Saturday, however, there was one thing the former Chicago Fire U-23 player hadn’t done: find the back of the net.

    That first MLS goal arrived at Red Bull Arena - and was quickly followed by Shipp’s second and third as he became only the sixth rookie in league history to record a hat trick. For his feat, which propelled the Fire to a dramatic 5-4 victory against the New York Red Bulls, Shipp earned the MLS Player of the Week award.

    "Harry’s been playing really well,” Fire coach Frank Yallop said. “Each game he’s gotten better, and better, and better."

    The rookie was quick to credit his teammates, particularly for the strong rearguard action that allowed the Fire to hold on for a vital victory on the road.

    “It was all about the team bonding together, as 11 guys defending the box and I think we showed that in the last 10 minutes there were some great head clearances and it was a rollercoaster, but it was a good rollercoaster,” Shipp said in a postgame interview on My50. "I’m just happy, if I score three goals and we don’t win the game it doesn’t really matter. So, that’s what’s important."

    Shipp’s performance was one of a number of impressive rookie outings by PDL alumni in MLS during the past weekend. Former standout Patrick Mullins scored his second goal in as many games for the New England Revolution as they steamrolled Seattle Sounders FC 5-0 on Sunday night, while former Portland Timbers U-23s All-League selection Mark Sherrod had a pair of goals in his first start for the Houston Dynamo.

    During a weekend of hat tricks in the league, with New York’s Shaun Wright-Phillips and Real Salt Lake’s Javier Morales also pulling the trick, Shipp’s performance cemented him as a key figure for the Fire not just for this season, but beyond.

    "I can’t say enough about Harry," he said. "He’s really working hard at his game, he looks like a real player, and I think he’s got a great chance at going all the way."

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    USL PRO Feature

    Tuesday, May 13, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – Leading up to Sporting Kansas City’s game with the Montreal Impact this past Saturday, Dom Dwyer was hopeful of notching his first hat trick for the MLS side.

    Photo courtesy USA TODAY Sports Jean-Yves AhernHis hopes weren’t without foundation, with the former Orlando City loanee and 2013 USL PRO Golden Boot co-winner having scored a pair of goals against the Impact in their last meeting just more than three weeks prior. For the second time in as many games this season, though, Dwyer would settle for a pair of goals to lead his side to a 3-0 victory on Saturday as SKC remained on top of the Eastern Conference standings. Dwyer’s brace moved him to six goals this season, good for fourth in the league, and saw him named to the MLS Team of the Week.

    “I think we controlled the game from the start, and it was a very solid performance,” Dwyer said in his post-game interview. “It was one we needed away from home.”

    Dwyer’s first goal came from the penalty spot after Montreal’s Collen Warner was whistled for a hand ball on the goal line that also reduced the Impact to 10 men.  Dwyer’s shot to the bottom-left corner beat Montreal goalkeeper Troy Perkins in the 18th minute, and he then added a second with just more than 25 minutes to go as a good through ball by Toni Dovale released him behind the defense.

    That was Dwyer’s last serious action as he was replaced in the 70th minute, and while he would have liked the chance to complete his hat trick, SKC’s schedule during the upcoming weeks took precedence.

    “We have a bunch of games coming up, so at 3-0 the game was over,” Dwyer said. “Honestly, the result is the most important. I want a hat trick, and I’ll get one at some point, but obviously this was a great result and we got the three points we needed.”

    Dwyer wasn’t the only USL PRO alum to play an important role in his side’s success this past weekend as 2011 USL PRO All-League selection and Rookie of the Year Luke Mulholland continued his strong first season for Real Salt Lake. Mulholland provided backup to Javier Morales’ hat trick with a goal and an assist in RSL’s 5-2 victory against the Houston Dynamo.

    The goal was Mulholland’s third for RSL, with the former Wilmington Hammerheads standout having also added a  pair of assists in 10 appearances this season.

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    Washington Spirit Reserves News Release -

    Tuesday, May 13, 2014

    BOYDS, Md. – The Washington Spirit Reserves have signed defender Cecilie Sandvej, who appeared for the NWSL's Spirit during the 2014 preseason and was waived by the club today.

    The Danish international and Australian W-League veteran earned minutes at outside back in each of the Spirit’s three preseason matches, but did not appear in any NWSL games this season. 

    “We are excited Cecilie will stay with us and play on the reserves for the W-League season. She will make a big impact and gain quality minutes she needs to continue her development,” Spirit Head Coach Mark Parsons said.

    Sandvej will be a strong addition to the Spirit Reserves, who are looking to bring home the W-League title after losing 3-2 in overtime in the semifinal last year against the Pali Blues.

    “Having the opportunity to add a top caliber player like Cecilie is every W-league manager or coach's dream. Her tactical awareness, combined with speed and finesse presents every forward in this league with a huge challenge,” Spirit Reserves general manager Tim Schweitzer said. “Cecilie's leadership and experience are a perfect fit with the players we have already in our defensive third, and we are fortunate to have her.”
    Sandvej will kick off the Spirit Reserves season against the Braddock Road Stars Elite on May 17 at 3 p.m. at the Maryland Soccerplex in a doubleheader with the Spirit, who take on the Western New York Flash at 6:30 p.m.

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    USL PRO News Release

    Tuesday, May 13, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – USL PRO named its Team of the Week for Week 8 of the 2014 season on Tuesday as LA Galaxy II forward Chandler Hoffman was named Player of the Week after he recorded two goals in two games as his side took four points from the week.

    Hoffman scored the game-winner for the Galaxy II as they took a 2-1 victory against the Charlotte Eagles on Monday, May 5. He then opened the scoring for Los Dos as they drew 1-1 on the road against the Dayton Dutch Lions on Saturday night. Hoffman now sits tied for the league lead with five goals in eight appearances this season.

    The two other players at the top of the race for the Golden Boot also earned selection to the Team of the Week, as Orlando’s Kevin Molino and Richmond’s George Davis IV were both selected. Molino’s fifth goal of the season proved decisive as the Lions took a 1-0 win against Pittsburgh on Friday night, while the same evening Davis IV opened the scoring in the Kickers’ 4-0 win against Arizona United.

    Arizona’s Paolo DelPiccolo and Rochester’s Tyler Rosenlund also earned selection in the midfield, while Orange County’s Gibson Bardsley earned selection after his 90th-minute game-winner against Oklahoma City on Saturday night.

    The Team of the Week’s defense is led by Charlotte’s Ben Newnam, who had a pair of good performances in the Eagles’ west-coast trip that were capped by a spectacular goal in the side’s 2-0 win against Orange County on Thursday night. Richmond’s Taylor Kemp also earns selection after a sterling night against Arizona, while Dayton’s Brock Granger and the LA Galaxy II’s Kyle Venter were named after solid outings. Wilmington goalkeeper Quillan Roberts gets the nod in goal after his late saves preserved a 1-0 victory for the Hammerheads on the road in Charleston.

    USL PRO teams open play in the U.S. Open Cup this week, with all 14 teams competing for a place in the third round on Tuesday and Wednesday night. The round includes a number of interesting ties that see sides take on some of the top teams in the PDL, with Orlando City hosting the defending Southeast Division champion Ocala Stampede, the Charlotte Eagles set to host the South Atlantic Division champion Carolina Dynamo, and the Orange County Blues visiting the Southwest Division champion Fresno Fuego.

    The USL PRO season continues this weekend, with three marquee matchups set for Saturday night. First, the Wilmington Hammerheads host the Charleston Battery at Legion Stadium in the conclusion of the rivals’ home-and-home series that began last Saturday. The action switches to the west coast as Arizona United SC hosts Orlando City at the Peoria Sports Complex, and Sacramento Republic FC hosts its final game at Hughes Stadium with a visit from the LA Galaxy II.

    Every game of the 2014 USL PRO season can be seen live on YouTube, with live updates also available via Twitter (@USLPRO), Facebook and Google+. Stay up to date with news, previews and match reports from throughout the league via

    USL PRO Team of the Week





















    Honorable Mention – Arizona: Evan Newton, Brandon Swartzendruber; Charleston: Mamadou Diouf; Charlotte: Drew Yates, Jorge Herrera; Dayton: Matt Williams, Aaron Schoenfeld; Harrisburg: Morgan Langley, Richie Marquez; LA Galaxy II: Rafael Garcia, Raul Mendiola; Oklahoma City: Michael Thomas, Jon Kempin; Orange County: Josh Ford, Taylor Peay; Orlando: Luke Boden, Dennis Chin; Pittsburgh: Matt Dallman; Richmond: Shay Spitz, Matt Delicate; Rochester: JC Banks, Johnny Mendoza; Wilmington: Paul Nicholson, Daniel Lovitz.

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    PDL News Release

    Tuesday, May 13, 2014

    TAMPA, Fla. – The second round of the 2014 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup kicks off on Tuesday night and continues on Wednesday, with a trio of PDL teams aiming to replicate their remarkable runs to face Major League Soccer opposition a season ago.

    The Ocean City Nor’easters, Reading United AC and the Des Moines Menace all claimed victories against professional opposition last season, but on Wednesday night they will face off against fellow amateurs in their quest for the third round.

    Defending PDL Eastern Conference champion Ocean City hosts the NY Greek American Atlas at Carey Stadium at 7 p.m. ET looking for a strong opening performance. The Nor’easters have returned a solid squad that includes 2013 All-Conference selection Dwayne Reid. Ocean City also added 2013 All-League selection Jason Plumhoff for the new season, and others such as captain Shawn McLaws, Frank Tweneboa and Zoncher Dennis.

    Reading United also returns a number of top college prospects as it hosts the Greater Binghamton FC Thunder at 7 p.m. ET, with N.C. State’s Nicholas Surkamp having opened his account for the side in its opening game of the PDL season last Wednesday, a 2-2 draw with the Jersey Express. Syracuse goalkeeper Alex Bono and Virginia’s Darius Madison, a former member of the Philadelphia Union Academy, are other players to watch on Wednesday night.

    Des Moines, meanwhile, will play host to fellow PDL side the Real Colorado Foxes after having qualified for this season’s tournament through the USASA qualifying tournament. Wednesday night’s game at Valley Stadium, set to kick off at 7:30 p.m. CT, will be the only meeting this season between the two longtime rivals from the PDL’s Heartland Division after the Foxes’ move into the new Mountain Division this season, but that should just add to the intensity as they battle for a place in the next round.

    A number of other PDL clubs host games looking to make an impact, most notably the defending Southwest Division champion Fresno Fuego, who welcome USL PRO’s Orange County Blues FC to Chukchansi Park looking for their first berth in the third round since the club’s inaugural season in 2004. The Portland Timbers U-23s will also host USL PRO opposition as they open the round with the lone Tuesday night game against Arizona United SC at 7 p.m. PT at Providence Park.

    The PDL champion Austin Aztex also received a home tie as they welcome NTX Rayados to House Park fresh off a 5-0 win in their opening game of the 2014 season this past Saturday night. Orlando City U23 faces Jacksonville United at the Seminole Sports Complex in a late afternoon kickoff before the Ocala Stampede face USL PRO leaders Orlando City at 7:30 p.m. ET.

    Other perennial PDL powers the Michigan Bucks and the Jersey Express will also begin their tournaments at home, with Michigan set to face Chicago-based RWB Adria and the Express welcoming the Brooklyn Italians on Wednesday night. The Baltimore Bohemians make their debut, meanwhile, as they host Icon FC at Calvert Hall College at 5:30 p.m. ET, while the Laredo Heat round out the PDL sides set to host with the visit of Florida’s Red Force to the Texas A&M International Soccer Complex.


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