2018 PDL Season Begins This Weekend-Mid South Divison Update

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USL PDL

The Premier Development League (PDL), an unofficial US Soccer Pyramid 4th Division soccer league that is owned and managed by the 2nd Division USL, begins play this weekend.  The first Texas match will take place on Friday, May 11 when Houston FC hosts Corpus Christi FC.  A few key points about the league:

  • The PDL, under a different name, was founded in 1995 and is now beginning its 24th season.  Only one Texas team, Austin Lone Stars, played in that first campaign.  Six Texas teams will compete as part of the Mid South Division of the Southern Conference in 2018.
  • In 2018 the PDL will field 74 teams in 11 Divisions across the U.S. and Canada. 12 expansion teams join the league.  Two of these clubs are from Texas, Corpus Christi FC and Houston-based AHFC Royals.
  • Unique Rules:  The league generally plays by standard International Laws of the Game, but there are a few unique considerations.
    • The rosters primarily consist of College or High School players who will be entering college.  No players are paid and strict enforcement of policies are taken to ensure college eligibility will not be compromised.
    • Each team can have no more than 10 foreign (non-US and Canadian citizens or Green Card holders) on Master Rosters or Game Day Lineup Sheets.
    • Most players are under 23 years old, but teams are allowed up to 8 overage players (anyone born before January 1, 1995).
    • Up to 6 substitutes per match are allowed.
  • The League regular season schedule runs from this weekend to July 14 and each team will play a 14 game schedule.  All Texas-based teams will play home and away against the six other Division teams and two other games against Texas opponents, assigned by league schedulers based on a number of factors.  The only non-Texas Mid South team, OKC Energy U23, will play its two games against a team from the neighboring Heartland Division.
  • Mid South defending champion OKC Energy U23 begins the season as the only Mid South team in the Southern Conference PDL Power Rankings (Ranked 1st)
  • The playoff format has not been established, but last year the top two teams, OKC Energy U23 and Mississippi Brilla (now in a different Division), in the Mid South Division advanced to the PDL Playoffs.  Because the season needs to finish in early August to allow players to return to their colleges, the playoffs are fast and furious.  Charlotte Eagles were the 2017 PDL Champions.

Mid South Division

AHFC Royals

Head Coach:  Josh Gardner

Years in PDL:  First

2017 Standings:  N/A

Home Field:  Tully Stadium-Houston, TX

Roster:

http://www.ahfcroyals.com/Default.aspx?tabid=942976

Background:

https://txsoccerjournal.com/2018/03/05/pdls-ahfc-royals-ambitious-youth-soccer-club-takes-the-next-step/

Brazos Valley Cavalry FC

Head Coach:  James Clarkson

Years in PDL:  Second

2017 Standings: 6-7-1-19 points (Third)

Home Field:  Nutrabolt Stadium-Bryan, TX

Roster:

http://bvcavalryfc.com/team/roster/

Background:

https://txsoccerjournal.com/2018/05/08/brazos-valley-cavalry-begins-its-second-year-pdl-partnership-with-houston-dynamo/

Corpus Christi FC Sharks

Head Coach:  Sammy Giraldo

Years in PDL:  First

2017 Standings:  N/A

Home Field:  Dugan Soccer and Track Stadium, TAMCC University-Corpus Christi, TX

Roster:

https://corpuscfc.com/roster/

Background:

https://txsoccerjournal.com/2018/02/08/corpus-christi-soccer-embarks-upon-a-new-journey/

FC Cleburne

Head Coach:  Paul Davenport

Years in PDL:  Second

2017 Standings:  4-9-1-13 points (Fifth)

Home Field:  The Depot at Cleburne Stadium-Cleburne, TX

Roster:  Not published at this time

Houston FC

Head Coach:  Bruce Talbot

Years in PDL:  Second

2017 Standings:  2-10-2 (Sixth)

Home Field:  Houston Baptist University-Houston, TX

Roster:

https://www.hfcpdl.com/roster/show/3915502?mirror_id=3923489&subseason=482928

Background:

https://txsoccerjournal.com/2018/04/30/houston-fc-begins-second-season-in-pdl-with-a-similar-focus-and-new-approaches/

OKC Energy U23

Head Coach:  John Pearlman

Years in PDL:  Third

2017 Standings:  12-1-1-37 points (First)

Home Field:  Stars Field, Oklahoma City University-Oklahoma City, OK

Roster:  Not published at this time

Texas United FC

Head Coach:  Arez Ardalani

Years in PDL:  Second

2017 Standings:  5-8-1-16 points (Fourth)

Home Field:  AirHogs Stadium-Grand Prairie, TX

Roster:  Not published at this time

2018 PDL Mid South Conference Schedule (Non-Texas home games)

Friday, May 11:

Houston FC vs. Corpus Christi FC

Saturday, May 12:

AHFC Royals vs. Corpus Christi

Thursday, May 17:

AHFC vs. Houston

Texas United FC vs. FC Cleburne

Saturday, May 19:

Corpus Christi vs. Cleburne

Sunday, May 20:

OKC Energy U23 vs. Texas

Tuesday, May 22:

Brazos Valley Cavalry FC vs. Houston

Thursday, May 24:

OKC vs. AHFC

Friday, May 25:

Corpus Christi vs. Texas

Sunday, May 27:

Cleburne vs. Brazos Valley

Tuesday, May 29:

Cleburne vs. AHFC

Wednesday, May 30:

Houston vs. Corpus Christi

Friday, June 1:

Houston vs. Texas

Saturday, June 2:

Brazos Valley vs. AHFC

Sunday, June 3:

OKC vs. Cleburne

Monday, June 4:

Texas vs. Corpus Christi

Tuesday, June 5:

Houston vs. AHFC

Friday, June 8:

Houston vs. Cleburne

Saturday, June 9:

Brazos Valley vs. Corpus Christi

Sunday, June 10:

AHFC vs. Cleburne

Wednesday, June 13:

Houston vs. Brazos Valley

Friday, June 15:

AHFC vs. Texas

Saturday, June 16:

Brazos Valley vs. OKC

Monday, June 18:

AHFC vs. Brazos Valley

Cleburne vs. Corpus Christi

Wednesday, June 20:

Houston vs. OKC

Friday, June 22:

AHFC vs. OKC

Corpus Christi vs. Houston

Saturday, June 23:

Texas vs. Cleburne

Sunday, June 24:

Corpus Christi vs. Brazos Valley

Monday, June 25:

Cleburne vs. Texas

Wednesday, June 27:

Brazos Valley vs. AHFC

Texas vs. Houston

Friday, June 29:

Brazos Valley vs. Cleburne

Saturday, June 30:

Corpus Christi vs. OKC

Monday, July 2:

Texas vs. AHFC

Tuesday, July 3:

Cleburne vs. Brazos Valley

Friday, July 6:

AHFC vs. Houston

Corpus Christi vs. Texas

OKC vs. Brazos Valley

 Sunday, July 8:

Corpus Christi vs. AHFC

Texas vs. OKC

Tuesday, July 10:

Cleburne vs. Houston

Texas vs. Brazos Valley

Thursday, July 12:

Cleburne vs. OKC

Friday, July 13:

Brazos Valley vs. Texas

Saturday, July 14:

OKC vs. Houston

Sunday, July 15:

OKC vs. Corpus Christi

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