PDL: Azul, Phantoms set for Conference Semis

Photo credit: Cody Smith, seacoastonline.com

Photo credit: Cody Smith, seacoastonline.com

New England will be well-represented at Saturday’s PDL Eastern Conference semifinals as Azul PDL and Seacoast United Phantoms will both be seeking a spot in the Conference finals.

The semifinals and final will take place at Lubetkin Field in Newark, N.J. The first match will pit the Azul against Jersey Express at 5:00pm. The second match will pit the Phantoms against the West Virginia Chaos at 7:30pm.

The Nutmeg State selection (9-2-3, 30 points) punched its ticket to the semis after beating Reading United 3-0 in Tuesday’s play-in game at Gurski Stadium. Luke Perry opened the scoring in the 29th minute while Jeremy Tavares and Sean Weir added tallies in the 36th and 66th minutes. Stephen Sasso made three saves to secure the first playoff win in club history.

The Phantoms advanced directly to the semifinals by virtue of their first-place finish in the Northeast Division. The Granite State side went 11-1-2 (35 points) this season, and clinched its postseason berth weeks before the regular season concluded. Incidentally, their only loss of the season came at the hands of the Azul, who beat them 2-1 on May 18 at Portsmouth High School.

The winners of Saturday’s matches will meet in the final on Sunday at 5:00pm.

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About Brian O'Connell

Brian O'Connell serves as editor and staff writer at New England Soccer Today. He's also the Revolution beat writer for ESPNBoston.com, and is Officer at Large for the North American Soccer Reporters. He's contributed to The Associated Press, The Canadian Press, and has been featured on MLSSoccer.com & RevsNet.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BrianOConnell21 or e-mail him at BOConnell21@aol.com