United To Host Jersey Express In PDL Playoffs
READING, Pa. (July 16, 2012)– Reading United start their fifth straight trip to the USL PDL playoffs tomorrow night with a little bit of déjà vu. This will mark the second straight year that the second place United (11-2-3, 36 points) will take on their Newark, New Jersey counterparts, Jersey Express (10-3-3, 33 points), in a Mid Atlantic Division play-in match for the #4 seed in the USL PDL Eastern Conference Playoffs.
Tickets are only $5 for all everyone 6 and older. Youth 5 and under OR anyone 18 and under wearing their club/high school soccer shirt get in free! Game time is 7pm at Albright College’s Gene Shirk Stadium in Reading, PA.
The United wrapped up their regular season on a torrid pace, collecting 16 of a possible 18 points (5-0-1 in last six games) up for grabs to leapfrog Jersey into second place in the Mid Atlantic Division. Jersey stumbled a little down the stretch, finishing 2-2-1 in their final six.
Reading is 5-1-2 at home this season with a +13 goal differential, while Jersey finished a respectable 5-2-1 and +8 goal differential as the visiting side in the regular season.
Reading will be looking for a bit of revenge, as the similar match-up last postseason ended in a 1-0 decision for the visiting Express. Only 11 shots were taken between the two teams in the rain-soaked affair, with Robert Youhill’s blast being the only attempt to cross the goal-line. Current New York Red Bull ‘keeper Ryan Meara made five stops for the advancing side, his second straight shutout of the United during the 2011 season.
“There’s definitely a sense of revenge,” said Reading defender David Rodriguez. “A bunch of our guys like (Sean) Peckham, (Matt) Baker, (Stephen) Okai and (Steven) Neumann were there last year. We know what we have to do to adjust this year.”
Jersey currently holds a 1-0-1 advantage over Reading this season, taking a 2-0 victory on the road exactly one month ago to spoil the United’s undefeated start (5-0-1) to the season. United snagged a point on the road on July 11th as Deshorn Brown’s game tying goal found netting in the 72nd minute.
The winner will advance to the USL PDL Eastern Conference semifinals, with the date, time and location still to be determined by this Tuesday’s results.