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UWS Midwest Conference Playoffs

07/13/2017, 7:00pm EDT
By Admin

Top four teams battle it out in Grandville, MI this weekend

METUCHEN, NJ - The regular season has concluded in the Midwest Conference of United Women’s Soccer (UWS) and this weekend the top four teams will battle it out for the automatic berth into the UWS National Championship (July 21-22). Grand Rapids FC Women (8-1-1 Midwest) are the regular season champions and host the Midwest playoffs this Saturday & Sunday (July 15-16) at Grandville High School in Grandville, MI.

GRFC will take on fourth-place FC Indiana (4-6 Midwest) at 7:30 PM on Saturday while second-place Detroit Sun FC (6-1-3 Midwest) and third-place Michigan Legends FC (4-3-3 Midwest) re-commence their in-state rivalry in the first Midwest Semifinal at 4:30 PM. Grand Rapids was victorious over FC Indiana in both contests this season. Detroit went 1-0-1 against Michigan in their season series.

The two Semifinal winners will go face-to-face in the 2017 UWS Midwest Final on Sunday, July 16 at 6:00 PM (EDT). Grandville High School will also be the host venue for the UWS National Championship. Tickets for this weekend’s Midwest playoffs are priced at $10 for a one-day pass and $15 for a two-day pass. To buy your tickets online, click HERE.

UWS MIDWEST CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS

Saturday, July 15

#2 Detroit Sun FC vs. #3 Michigan Legends FC - 4:30 PM (EDT)

#1 Grand Rapids FC Women vs. #4 FC Indiana - 7:30 PM (EDT)

Sunday, July 16

Midwest Final: semifinal winners - 6:00 PM (EDT)

“Our first season in UWS has been an amazing experience so far,” said GRFC Head Coach Lewis Robinson. “Our team has grown throughout the year and we are really looking forward to competing against the top teams in the Midwest this weekend at home in Grandville!”

“It has been a season of growth for Detroit Sun FC,” said Detroit Sun FC Head Coach Skipper Mukhtar. “We have seen each and every one of our girls improve from game to game and we know we have what it takes to win and represent the Midwest Conference in the National Championship. We are very excited to peak at this point in the season and look forward to seeing girls like Madison Schupbach and our goalkeeper Caitlyn Clem lead our team to a deep playoff run.”

“We are very excited and proud to be part of the UWS Midwest playoff,” said Michigan Legends FC Head Coach Saimir Rada. “The league has been fantastic for our players as they prepare for the upcoming college soccer season. The Legends women have competed hard all season. I'm happy for the players to have earned a chance to play a tough opponent.”

“We are very excited to be in the Midwest playoffs,” said FC Indiana Head Coach Justin Crew. “This was a goal of ours from the beginning, so for it to now be a reality is very gratifying. I am very proud of the players, my staff and everyone involved with FC Indiana. It has been a total team effort.”

About United Women’s Soccer (UWS): UWS is a national women’s soccer league sanctioned by U.S. Soccer through the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA). UWS is a professionally operated league created for teams that meet high minimum standards. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship match. The UWS player pool is comprised of college players, aspiring & former professionals and international stars. You can follow UWS on social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Media can contact UWS Director of Communications Jorma Kansanen by e-mail at UWSPress@gmail.com. You can visit the league’s official website at UWSSoccer.com. Interested team applicants can contact League Commissioner Joe Ferrara, Jr. by e-mail at Joe@UWSSoccer.com.

UWS Week IX Roundup: Midwest Conference

07/10/2017, 4:15pm EDT
By Admin

Two wins propel Michigan Legends FC into Midwest playoffs

DETROIT SUN FC 2, TOLEDO VILLA FC 1

PONTIAC, MI - Detroit Sun FC (6-1-3 Midwest) helped complete the field for the four-team Midwest playoffs (July 15-16) with their 2-1 win over Toledo Villa FC (3-6-1 Midwest) in the last regular season game in conference play. If Toledo had won on Sunday afternoon at Ultimate Soccer Arenas, they would’ve finished in fourth place and qualified for the postseason. But with Toledo’s loss, FC Indiana (4-6 Midwest) backed into the Midwest playoffs after losing their last three games of the 2017 campaign. Two goals from team-leading scorer Madison Schupbach (nine goals, four assists) led the Detroit offense while Caitlyn Clem made seven saves in the victory.

In the 42nd minute, forward Evdokia Popadinova crossed the ball to Schupbach who volleyed her shot past Villa goalkeeper Kathleen Duvwe (nine saves) for the 1-0 lead. In the 45th minute, the Bowling Green standout won the ball and converted on an unassisted strike for the 2-0 score. But Detroit would go down to ten players before halftime, as Popadinova was shown a red card after an altercation with Toledo defender Kirsten Catloth. The visitors than lost the services of leading scorer Skylar Fleak (eight goals) in the 72nd minute after she collided with Clem on an aerial challenge. Kristina Demarco’s goal for Villa in the 87th minute would be little consolation as Toledo’s postseason hopes were dashed with the final whistle.

MICHIGAN LEGENDS FC 3, FC INDIANA 1

BRIGHTON, MI - Off the strength of two home victories over Midwest playoff opposition to end the regular season - while also out-scoring their opponents by a 6-1 margin - Michigan Legends FC (4-3-3 Midwest) finished in third place in the final conference standings. Michigan will now face in-state rivals Detroit in the first Midwest Conference Semifinal on this Saturday, July 15th at 4:30 PM (EDT) at Grandville High School in Grandville, MI. On Sunday afternoon inside the Legacy Center against FC Indiana (4-6 Midwest), a two goal-assist performance from midfielder Katrina Koomen led the offense while Gabby Gauruder made four saves in net as MLFC won by a 3-1 score in their home finale.

It was the visitors who opened the scoring in this match, as midfielder Annelie Leitner threaded her shot past Gauruder in the 58th minute. It only took Michigan thirty seconds to respond and tie the score. Koomen sent in a pass behind FCI goalkeeper Andrea Vera (three saves) and forward Kristin Abbott tallied her first goal of the season on an easy open net tap-in. Legends FC rolled on from there and in the 70th minute, leading scorer Tori Singstock (seven goals, assist) tapped her free kick to Koomen who bent her strike past Vera from 18 yards out. The Charleston standout was feeling it and in the 79t minute, finished the scoring on the night with a 25-yard blast to put an exclamation point on the postseason-clinching win.

INDY PREMIER SC 1, GRAND RAPIDS FC WOMEN 7

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - Midfielder Bethany Balcer continued her torrid scoring run to end the regular season on Saturday night, tallying three goals and an assist in an emphatic 7-1 win for the Grand Rapids FC Women (8-1-1 Midwest) on the road against Indy Premier SC (2-7-1 Midwest). Grand Rapids hosts the four-team Midwest playoffs this upcoming weekend and will host FC Indiana at 7:30 PM (EDT) on Saturday night. IPSC’s slim hopes for a postseason berth were scuttled the night before via a loss to Fort Wayne, and that disappointment appeared to seep into Indy Premier’s finale as the visitors scored early and often at Park Tudor School. GRFC goalkeeper Lauren Kozal made three saves in the victory while her counterpart Claire Graves stopped five shots in the losing effort.

Balcer converted on a through ball from forward Riko Sagara in the seventh minute of play and in the very next minute, forward Avery Lockwood converted on a give-and-go with Samantha Maher for the early 2-0 lead. Balcer’s cross in the 28th minute found Lockwood who headed the ball home for her third goal of the season. Two minutes later, Lockwood sent a ball over the top of the IPSC defense and Balcer made the score 4-0 and it remained that way going into halftime. A goal from Balcer and two from midfielder Anna Stinson in the second half completed the scoring for Grand Rapids. Indy Premier’s leading scorer Brady Riley (five goals, two assists) tallied the lone goal for the home side in the 72nd minute on an assist from midfielder Kayla Smith.

MICHIGAN LEGENDS FC 3, TOLEDO VILLA FC 0

BRIGHTON, MI - Michigan Legends FC began their impressive two-game homestead to conclude the regular season in fine fashion last Friday night, shutting out the Toledo Villa FC offense and getting a goal-assist performance from forward Kristelle Yewah in a 3-0 win at the Legacy Center. It was the second shutout in the last five games of the 2017 campaign for Michigan, who allowed only five goals during the eventual 3-1-1 streak to qualify for the Midwest playoffs. Gabby Gauruder (six saves) was a stonewall in goal again for MLFC, notching her second straight shutout, while Kathleen Duvwe made four saves in the loss.

Legends FC opened the scoring in the 37th minute on forward Tori Singstock’s unassisted goal on a breakaway. In the 69th minute, Yewah’s cross found Sydney O'Donnell and she converted her first goal of the season for the 2-0 lead. In the 74th minute, midfielder Katrina Koomen’s cross found Yewah who finished the scoring on the night. Michigan out-shot Toledo by a slim 8-7 margin. After a strong 3-2 win over FC Indiana to open their four-game road trip to end the regular season, it was the second straight loss for the Villa Women who were out-scored by a 7-0 margin over those two games.

INDY PREMIER SC 0, FORT WAYNE UNITED GRYPHONS 1

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - In a game that was delayed by lightning, Indy Premier SC’s offense could not capture it in a bottle, dropping a tough 1-0 loss to the Fort Wayne United Gryphons (3-6-1 Midwest) and ending their slim hopes of a spot in the four-team Midwest playoffs. The victory pushed Fort Wayne past IPSC in the conference standings and would eventually finish in sixth place after the weekend’s action. Morgan Halliwill’s game-winning tally in the 56th minute put her at the top of the team’s scoring charts alongside Hannah Tillet, who provided the assist on her goal - both players finished the season with six points. The combination of Hannah Parrish and Lorah Pund made five total saves in goal in the win while Claire Graves made four saves for Indy Premier in the loss.

About United Women’s Soccer (UWS): UWS is a national women’s soccer league sanctioned by U.S. Soccer through the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA). UWS is a professionally operated league created for teams that meet high minimum standards. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship match. The UWS player pool is comprised of college players, aspiring & former professionals and international stars. You can follow UWS on social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Media can contact UWS Director of Communications Jorma Kansanen by e-mail at UWSPress@gmail.com. You can visit the league’s official website at UWSSoccer.com. Interested team applicants can contact League Commissioner Joe Ferrara, Jr. by e-mail at Joe@UWSSoccer.com.

UWS Week IX Preview: Midwest Conference

07/06/2017, 5:30pm EDT
By Admin

Four teams battle for the last two spots in the Midwest playoffs

METUCHEN, NJ - Going into the final weekend of the regular season in the Midwest Conference of United Women’s Soccer (UWS), two teams have wrapped up spots in the four-team Midwest playoffs while the other two berths are still up for grabs. Last weekend, Grand Rapids FC captured the conference crown with two impressive wins at home while Detroit solidified their spot in second place with their own strong victory on Sunday. This weekend, four teams - FC Indiana (12 points), Toledo (10 points), Michigan (nine points) and Indy Premier (seven points) - will battle it out for the two remaining spots in the postseason.

FRIDAY, JULY 7

Michigan Legends FC vs. Toledo Villa FC
7:00 PM EDT - Legacy Center (Brighton, MI)

In the first matchup of the weekend between teams battling for a Midwest playoff spot, Toledo Villa FC (3-4-1 UWS Midwest) continue their road trip with the rubber match of the season series with Michigan Legends FC (2-3-3 UWS Midwest) - who are only one point behind Villa in the standings in fifth-place. The first matchup between the two sides must seem like ages ago, as Toledo hosted Michigan on Sunday, May 21 in Week II action. It would end up being a frustrating result for the home side due to MLFC netting a late equalizer in the 2-2 draw.

Michigan got on the score board first in the sixth minute when forward Singstock sent a diagonal pass to forward Kristelle Yewah, who placed her shot high and inside the far post. The Villa Women responded with two goals by forward Skylar Fleak. In the 24th minute, midfielder Veronica Zaciek intercepted a back pass and sent in Fleak for an open net goal. Six minutes into the second half, Zaciek’s corner kick met Fleak’s towering header. Michigan defender Megan Trapp broke the host’s hearts in the 80th minute as she converted on a rebound from a penalty kick for the 2-2 final score. MLFC out-shot Toledo by a 10-3 margin.

Indy Premier SC vs. Fort Wayne United Gryphons
7:00 PM EDT - Park Tudor School (Indianapolis, IN)

The Cinderella story - or, in other words - playoff run for Indy Premier SC (2-5-1 Midwest) commences on Friday night with a rematch against the Fort Wayne United Gryphons (2-6-1 Midwest), who they first met in Week III play on Sunday, May 28th. IPSC needs two wins and help to sneak in the back door into the Midwest playoffs (July 15-16), hosted by Grands Rapids FC in Grandville, MI. Indy Premier does have a home field advantage this weekend, playing their final two regular season games at Park Tudor School. And in this match against Fort Wayne, they can can have revenge on their mind after dropping a 1-0 loss in the first game between the two sides.

Gryphons forward Amelia White tallied the game-winning goal in the 18th minute at Warrior Athletic Field, as the attack came together for the host side in their first win of the season. IPSC goalkeeper Natalie Wilkinson had to make seven saves in the loss. White was named to the UWS Team Of The Week for her efforts. After an up-and-down season for the Indy Premier offense, the team’s attack finally broke out for their highest goal total of the year in last Friday’s 4-3 win over Michigan Legends FC. Forward Brady Riley tallied two goals and an assist in the home win. Riley leads IPSC in scoring (4 goals, 3 assists) and was named to the UWS Team Of The Week for the third time this campaign.

SATURDAY, JULY 8

Indy Premier SC vs. Grand Rapids FC Women
7:00 PM EDT - Park Tudor School (Indianapolis, IN)

Even though Grand Rapids FC Women (7-1-1 Midwest) have already captured the conference crown, they still have particulars to play for: they not only will host the Midwest playoffs, but the UWS National Championship (July 21-22) as well. But they are not guaranteed a spot in the tournament, so its either winning the four-team playoffs they will host or post as an impressive record as they can to stake claim to the “wild card” spot into the UWS Championship. The fourth team will be determined by a number of criteria (record, strength of schedule, travel concerns, etc.) and with a strong showing to conclude the season, the GRFC Women can have the best shot at two different opportunities to get into the championship and win the UWS title in their first-ever campaign.

This will be the first meeting of the year between Indy Premier SC and Grands Rapids FC. If IPSC is victorious on Friday night, the visitors will face a motivated opponent as the home side may still have a outside shot at the fourth spot in the conference playoffs. If Indy Premier is going to pull the upset against the GRFC Women, they will have to break the impressive winning streak the latter team is on. Grand Rapids has won their last four games, out-scoring the competition by a 15-1 margin. GRFC has been led by the late season scoring run by midfielder Bethany Balcer, who has tallied three straight hat tricks.

SUNDAY, JULY 9

Michigan Legends FC vs. FC Indiana
2:00 PM EDT - Legacy Center (Brighton, MI)

Two games ago, it appeared the FC Indiana (4-5 Midwest) were in rock solid position to qualify for the four-team Midwest playoffs and possibly even challenge Detroit Sun FC (5-1-3 Midwest) for the second seed. But two disappointing losses to end their home campaign has resulted and the long-time soccer organization face a uncertain fate this weekend - even though they occupy third-place in the standings. Only a win in Sunday afternoon’s regular season finale against a fellow playoff contender in Michigan Legends FC will guarantee FCI a spot in the playoffs. A draw may be enough to qualify, depending on other results.

This will be the first meeting of the year between FC Indiana and Michigan. With a postseason berth on the line, both teams have not been in the best form. FCI dropped a 3-2 loss to fellow playoff contender Toledo Villa FC last Saturday in their home finale, while Fort Wayne notched their second win of the season on June 21st in a 2-1 contest at Newton Park. Michigan lost by a 4-3 score to Indy Premier last Friday but did manage a 0-0 draw against second-place Detroit on Saturday, June 24th.

Detroit Sun FC vs. Toledo Villa FC
4:00 PM EDT - Ultimate Soccer Arenas (Pontiac, MI)

Like Grands Rapids FC, Detroit’s postseason fate has already been decided, as after last Sunday’s impressive win over Fort Wayne, the Sun wrapped up second-place in the conference race and #2 seed in the four-team Midwest playoffs. Forward Madison Schupbach led the Detroit offense in the victory, tallying two goals and two assists at Ultimate Soccer Arenas, and midfielder Alyssa Burke chipped in with the first two goals of the match. Schupbach’s 21 points (eight goals, five assists) on the season is now tied for second in league scoring. Sun goalkeeper Krystin Lawrence made seven saves in her season debut - and was also credited with an assist on forward Devyn Brough’s goal in the 60th minute.

But also like the GRFC Women, Detroit will want to post as impressive record to finish not only the regular season but the postseason with the “wild card” spot also looming as a potential opportunity to qualify for the UWS National Championship. Toledo will also have motivation on their side, as they will still be in a position to qualify for the Midwest playoffs even if they lose on Friday night - but FC Indiana will have to lose to Michigan Legends FC earlier in the afternoon. In that case, a win over Detroit will do for the Villa Women. If FCI draw with Michigan, Toledo must win to force the tiebreak procedure.

About United Women’s Soccer (UWS): UWS is a national women’s soccer league sanctioned by U.S. Soccer through the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA). UWS is a professionally operated league created for teams that meet high minimum standards. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship match. The UWS player pool is comprised of college players, aspiring & former professionals and international stars. You can follow UWS on social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Media can contact UWS Director of Communications Jorma Kansanen by e-mail at UWSPress@gmail.com. You can visit the league’s official website at UWSSoccer.com. Interested team applicants can contact League Commissioner Joe Ferrara, Jr. by e-mail at Joe@UWSSoccer.com.