Mid Atlantic Division Alignment
Largest Division in Super Y-League adds seven clubs
March 1, 2007
TAMPA – United Soccer Leagues Super Y-League announced today the final alignment for the Mid Atlantic division. The flagship division of the Super Y-League welcomes seven newcomers to the Mid Atlantic, which now boasts 25 of the top clubs in the region. Perhaps the most significant addition is the return of Pennsylvania club powerhouse FC DELCO.
Fellow additions include: Lions SC (Bowie, MD), Quickstrike SC (Newburgh, NY), PDA (Zapareth, NJ), Princeton Soccer (NJ), Southern Maryland FC, and the complete transfer of D.C. United’s youth system to the Mid Atlantic. D.C. United was formerly part of the Super Y-League’s South Atlantic Division.
“The Mid Atlantic Division continues to be one of the most competitive divisions of the Super Y-League and Super-20 League as it contains some of the best youth clubs in the United States,” said USL Managing Director of Club Development Matt Weibe. “Aided by the participation of Major League Soccer’s recent youth academy initiative, this division contains two of their most proactive cubs on the youth development front. Combining those clubs with USL’s youth academy teams at the USL Second Division, Premier Development League, and W-League level will provide players within this region of the country the best opportunities to compete at the highest levels of the game.”
The North American Finals saw three Mid Atlantic sides advance to the championship match: the Reading Rage U15 girls, Parsippany SC U17 girls, and Red Bull New York U14 boys. The remainder of the clubs in the region include: the Brooklyn Knights, FC Westchester (NY), Long Island Rough Riders, Ironbound SC (NJ), City Islanders Academy (PA), Super Nova FC (PA), Hockessin-United Futbol Academy (DE), the South Jersey Barons, the Washington Freedom, Match Fit Academy, the New Jersey Junior Stallions, New York Magic, New York Rough Riders, and TSF Academy (NJ).
D.C. United’s shift into the region brings the intense I-95 rivalry of Major League Soccer home to the Super Y-League. D.C. United will face Red Bull New York, as they did for the first time in the knockout stages of the inaugural Super-20 North American Finals, in the U14-U17 boys division of the Mid Atlantic Division. Lions SC and Southern Maryland FC bring elite boys and girls sides out of Maryland into the mix. Lions SC will field U13-U17 boys and U13-U14 girls teams while Southern Maryland SC handles the U15-U17 girls. PDA and Princeton Soccer reinforce the New Jersey soccer base of the region adding ten teams between the two clubs.
Quickstrike SC, fielding a team in the U13 boys, and the U15 and U17 girls, becomes the northernmost club in the Mid Atlantic Division, which stretches as far South as Washington, D.C. The division moves east to west traveling from Harrisburg, PA back to Wilton, CT.
The Super Y-League Mid Atlantic now boasts the most competitive youth soccer region in the country bringing together the top quality out of Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Delaware, Southwest Connecticut, and Washington, D.C.
FC DELCO won a North American Finals Championship in 2001 out of the U16 Boys division. They return to the Super Y-League in 2007, fielding eight teams in all but two of the Super Y-League’s ten divisions.
“We are a club that came into the Super Y-League on the cusps and for one reason or another got away from it,” said FC DELCO Director of Coaching Sam Holt. Now that we have a Director of Coaching in place, the philosophy of the Super Y-League fits very well with what we are trying to establish here.”
“As a premier club we took notice of things like the fact that Josmer Altidore fell through the cracks elsewhere and came into your North American Finals, got picked up right away and now is scoring playoff goals at Red Bull New York,” added Holt. “I had a conversation with a former FC DELCO player now with Red Bull New York – he loves the Altidore. He says Altidore has size and speed, definitely the ability to be great.”
South Jersey Barons
The South Jersey Barons, one of the multi-year members of the Super Y-League has solidified their commitment to the top youth soccer league in North American by fielding a full slate of teams U13-U17 on both the boys and girls side for the first time in 2007.
“The idea of being a complete club, top to bottom, by fielding teams at all age-groups is something I feel all clubs should strive to do so,” said South Jersey Barons Director of Coaching Neil Holloway. “The Super Y-League gives clubs the model and platform to be able to do this. We schedule play dates in the summer when all of our teams compete against a club such as Parsippany or the Reading Rage at every age group. It turns into a real club event.”
“Our club has been involved with the SYL for a number of years now,” added Holloway. “During that time we have seen the level of play in our own club and the league raise to what is now nationally recognized as the best place for players to play and develop. Our club has continued with its goal of developing players, to a point where every high school senior in our club that wants to go on to play college soccer gets the opportunity to do so.”
Another club that remains on the rise is FC Westchester. The club will field the maximum number of teams in the boys division for consecutive seasons. FC Westchester enjoyed success in 2006 by qualifying their U16 and U17 boys in the North American Finals in Tampa.
“We hope to repeat this past season’s performance in 2007,” said FC Westchester Director of Operations Lonny Unger. “We ultimately sent two teams to Tampa for the finals and while neither team reached the final round, both performed very, very well against what was clearly the top club competition in North America. The quality of play in every game we played at the championships was top notch to say the least. That sediment was echoed by the scores of college coaches who attended the event and started recruiting several of our players at the event’s conclusion.”
“We are heartened to see a top club like F.C. Delco coming into the Mid-Atlantic Division,” added Unger. “That and D.C. United being relocated into our region means week in and week out, the competition in our division, which was already fierce, will be even fiercer. We look forward to our teams being challenged each and every time they step onto the field.”