Eastern Conference Playoff Preview
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
Eastern Conference Playoffs Set after Play-in Games on Tuesday Night
Charlotte, NC – The Charlotte Eagles (9-3-2, 29 pts) and Myrtle Beach Mutiny (10-1-3, 33 pts) learned who would be joining them in the Eastern Conference Playoffs on Tuesday night. The Seacoast United Phantoms defeated Reading United 3-1 and the Long Island Rough Riders defeated the top seeded New York Red Bulls 4-1 to advance to Statesboro, Georgia this coming weekend.
The Seacoast United Phantoms (11-1-2, 35 pts) hosted Reading United AC (12-2-2, 36 pts) on Tuesday night in the first play-in game for the Eastern Conference Playoffs. Seacoast finished as the #1 seed in the Northeast Division, while Reading United finished the regular season as the #2 team in the Mid-Atlantic.
In the other play-in game the New York Red Bulls U23 (12-1-1, 37 pts) team hosted the Long Island Rough Riders (8-2-4, 28 pts) on Tuesday night. The Red Bulls, who won the 2015 PDL Championship, finished the regular season winning the Mid-Atlantic Division, while Long Island earned a 1-1 draw in their regular season finale to secure the #2 spot in the Northeast Division.
In the first play-in game, Seacoast United used three first half goals in the span of 16 minutes to down Reading United 3-1. Donnett Sackie opened the scoring for the Phantoms in the 20th minute before Ivan Blaskic doubled their advantage five minutes later. Audi Jepsen added the third Phantoms goal in the 36th minute as his shot was fired past Reading keeper Justin Saliba. Reading United got on the board before halftime as Aaron Molloy saw his penalty initially saved before it rebounded off the bar and over the goal line to make the score 3-1. Seacoast United was able to see out the game in the second half, repelling chance after chance for Reading United.
The second play-in game saw the New York Red Bulls U23 drop a surprising one to Long Island Rough Riders at the NYRB Training Facility. Long Island got on the board early thanks to a 16th minute goal, they doubled their lead shortly before the halftime break to take a commanding 2-0 lead to the locker room. Thirteen minutes after the halftime interval the visitors put the game away with a goal to lead 3-0. Red Bull eventually broke through in the 80th minute to make the score 3-1 before the Rough Riders added a late insurance goal to see the final score out at 4-1.
Setting the stage for the Eastern Conference Playoffs in Statesboro, Georgia sees the Myrtle Beach Mutiny take on the Long Island Rough Riders at 6:00 pm on Saturday night. The Eagles will then take on Seacoast United following that match at 8:30 pm on Saturday night. The winners of the semifinals matches will face each other for the Eastern Conference Title at 8:00 pm on Sunday night.
The winner of the Eastern Conference will then advance to the PDL National Final Four where they will meet the three other division winners, Central Conference, Southern Conference and Western Conference.
Stay tuned to Charlotte Eagles social media for inside looks at Playoff Weekend.
From Charlotte to Statesboro, we’ll Keep the Orange Flag Flying High!