USL News Release
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
TAMPA, FL – United Soccer Leagues released the 2010 Premier Development League schedules for the Eastern and Western Conferences. The PDL, the top men’s developmental league in North America, opens its 19th season of play on the west coast April 24 in Fresno and its 18th season on the northern Atlantic coast on May 8 in Newark and New Hampshire.
“Player development has been at the heart of the mission of the league since USL went outdoors in 1989,” said PDL Director of Operations Lee Cohen. “It is one of the primary reasons the league quickly grew from its Texas roots to both coasts and remains a leader in forging future professionals in the United States and Canada.”
The Fresno Fuego will kick off the 2010 campaign when they play host to the Hollywood United Hitmen, the Southwest Division’s regular season champions a year ago, on Saturday, April 24. Competition will begin in earnest the following weekend with three more Southwest match-ups and the Northwest Division opener. The defending league champion Ventura County Fusion travel to Lancaster to face the Rattlers on Saturday, May 1. Hollywood hosts the Southern California Seahorses also that night with the Los Angeles Legends hosting Orange County Blue Star the following day.
The defending Northwest Division regular season and playoff champion Kitsap Pumas travel to Yakima for the division’s first game of 2010 on Saturday, May 1 in the lone game of the weekend in the Northwest.
The Eastern Conference kicks things off the following week with two games on its opening night Saturday, May 8. The Ironbound Express host the West Virginia Chaos in the Mid Atlantic Division opener and the Westchester Flames travel to New Hampshire to take on the Phantoms in the first game of the Northeast Division’s season.
Opening Weekend continues for the Eastern Conference the following day with the defending regular season champion Reading United AC playing the first game under its new MLS Philadelphia Union-affiliated moniker against the Hampton Roads Piranhas. Also that night, the New Jersey Rangers play host to West Virginia and the Flames visit PDL newcomer MPS Portland Phoenix.
The regular season wraps up Monday, July 26 with the Bermuda Hogges visiting West Virginia in the Eastern Conference finale. The Vancouver Whitecaps Residency play host to the Victoria Highlanders in the lone game in the Western Conference on the final day for the rest of the league Sunday, July 25.
A dozen players with Premier Development League experience were selected in the First Round of the 2010 Major League Soccer draft in January at the NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia. In all, 48 players with PDL experience were taken in the four-round, 64-player event.
The schedules for the Central and Southern Conferences will be announced in the coming weeks along with the 2010 PDL playoff format and schedule.
Eastern Conference Schedule (pdf) [+] Western Conference Schedule (pdf) [+]