With the 2019 USL League Two regular season coming to a close over the weekend we set our sights on this year's playoffs.
We are excited to announce our four host teams for the Conference Semi-Finals and Finals as well as the matchups for the first round of playoff action:
1. Northeast Champions - Western Mass Pioneers
2. Mid Atlantic Champions - Reading United AC
3. Eastern Wild Card - GPS Portland Phoenix
4. South Atlantic Champions - North Carolina Fusion U23
1. Heartland Champions - Des Moines Menace
2. Great Lakes Champions - Chicago FC United
3. Heartland Wild Card - Kaw Valley FC
4. Great Lakes Wild Card - Flint City Bucks
1. Mid South Champions - Brazos Valley Cavalry FC
2. Deep South Champions - South Georgia Tormenta FC 2
3. Southeast Champions - The Villages SC
4. Southern Wild Card - SC United Bantams
1. Southwest Champions - FC Golden State Force
2. Northwest Champions - Calgary Foothills FC
3. Western Wild Card - Ventura County Fusion
4. Mountain Champions - Colorado Pride Switchbacks U23
CENTRAL CONFERENCE, DES MOINES MENACE @ Drake University
After an incredible, undefeated season, the Menace gets to cap it off by playing at home to kick off the playoffs. Des Moines’ strong year with 30 goals scored and only four conceded places them at the top of the Central Conference as the number one seed.
Traveling to the capital of Iowa to play the hosts is the Flint City Bucks. They stole points off of Dayton twice last week to clinch their spot in the playoffs for the 22nd time in their history. For the first round of playoffs, no teams from the same division will play each other, that paired with fewer points than Kaw Valley pushes the Bucks to the four seed.
The top dogs in the Great Lakes looked impressive despite suffering three losses. As the first team to clinch a playoff spot they averaged 2.25 goals a game that accounted for their +18 goal differential. With their division win, they move into the number two seed.
Taking on Chicago from the Heartland Division is Kaw Valley who ended their season within striking distance of Thunder Bay but their loss to Des Moines put them out of reach and secured Kaw Valley’s first ever playoff appearance as the number three seed in the Central Conference.
EASTERN CONFERENCE, READING UNITED AC @ Gurski Stadium
In the Eastern Conference, we head to Reading, Pennsylvania who ended the season ten points clear of the next closest team in their conference and took just one loss in their 14 games. They scored goals for fun all season and continued to do so on the last day of the season with a 5-0 win going into the playoffs in hot form as the number two seed.
Playing the hosts in the first round will be GPS Portland Phoenix, ending the season on back to back wins in high scoring matches against Westchester and Boston to clinch the wildcard spot in the playoffs as the number three seed.
The best team in the Eastern Conference will be traveling from Western Mass as the Pioneers remained undefeated in the Northeast and took with them 36 points which are tied for the most points of any team in all of League Two.
The number four seed comes from the South Atlantic Division winners which really came down to the final weekend as North Carolina Fusion U23 finished just two points north of North Carolina FC U23. They get to take on Western Mass in the first round for a shot at the Conference Finals.
SOUTHERN CONFERENCE, SC UNITED BANTAMS @ Southeastern Freight Lines Soccer Center “The Monti”
After finishing in a Wild Card spot in the Southern Conference, SC United Bantams will be hosting the games for the South in Columbia. After a hot start, SC United looked to battle to the very end with Tormenta, and battle they did until the very last day where they suffered their second loss to South Georgia to finish second in the Deep South and take the number four seed.
Playing them is the top dogs from the Mid South, the third and final undefeated team, Brazos Valley Cavalry FC. After scoring a league-leading 51 goals, which is an average of 3.64 goals a game, the Cavalry head into the postseason in remarkable form and as the number one seed in the south.
In the other Southern semi-final, Tormenta FC 2 fought hard to defend the top spot that the now League One Tormenta earned last year. With +22 goal differential, Tormenta 2 looked dominant in a majority of their games with just two losses on the year.
Traveling north to take on Tormenta 2 is The Villages who started their season with just one win in May, would go on to win eight of their remaining 11 games, pulling off a draw in the other three matches. The Villages enter the postseason with just the opening day loss on their record and come in as the number three seed.
WESTERN CONFERENCE, FC GOLDEN STATE FORCE @ Rio Hondo College
All the way out west we head to Whittier, California, just outside of Los Angeles as FC Golden State Force, with their dominant season topped the Western Conference. After dropping points, just three times all season and scoring 42 goals, the winners of the Southwest will host as the number one seed.
Despite beating Ventura County on tiebreakers, Colorado Pride Switchbacks U23 will come in as the number four seed as two teams from the same conference cannot play each other in the first round of playoffs. They played just 12 games in the Mountain division but finished on 28 points with 30 goals scored and will play Golden State in the Western semi-final.
After needing a win on the last day to lock in their top spot, Calgary enters the playoffs as the number two seed. Last years champions get a chance to defend their title after fighting hard in a competitive division to return to the playoffs.
Ventura County may have had an inconsistent start and finish to the season as they made an eight-game run with just one loss in the core of their season. They finished second to FC Golden State Force but split the points with them this season taking a loss at Rio Hondo and a win back at Ventura College. With 28 points they take the number three seed in the West.
Conference Semifinals & Conference Finals
July 19 - July 21
USL League Two Semifinals
July 26 - July 28
USL League Two Finals
August 2 - August 4
Tag(s): NEWS League News Flint City Bucks Chicago FC United Des Moines Menace Kaw Valley FC GPS Portland Phoenix Western Mass Pioneers Reading United AC North Carolina Fusion U23 SC United Bantams South Georgia Tormenta FC 2 Brazos Valley Cavalry F.C. The Villages SC Col. Pride Switchbacks U23 Calgary Foothills FC FC Golden State Force Ventura County Fusion