The 2018 USL PDL season is down to four teams, after the weekend’s conference semifinals around the country.
Here’s how it happened over the weekend.
One of the most recognizable names in the PDL, Reading United continued its stellar 2018 campaign by securing a 2-1 win against New York Red Bulls U23 on Saturday.
Khori Bennett accounted for both of Reading’s goals in the first half, nabbing tallies in the 26th and 42nd minute of the first half. Reading was able to hold off the Red Bulls, which pulled a goal back through Sylvain Coco in the 61st minute.
Still undefeated at 14-0-2, Reading will host The Villages SC in next weekend’s national semifinal.
It took both a memorable comeback in the conference semifinal and a stout defensive effort in the final for Chicago FC United to earn a national semifinal spot.
Down 3-1 in Friday’s matchup against the Dayton Dutch Lions, Chicago roared back with four second half goals, as Luka Prpa scored twice and setup another goal in the team’s rampant comeback.
That fired Chicago FC into the Central Conference final against Des Moines Menace, who defeated Lansing United on penalty kicks after a 0-0 draw. There, a lone goal by Giann Magno would be enough, as goalkeeper Luis Barraza made three saves in a 1-0 win.
For the second time in three years, Calgary Foothills FC finished the PDL as Western Conference champions, beating FC Tucson by a 2-0 score on Saturday.
In the semifinal, Calgary edged Colorado Rapids U23s by a 1-0 score, advancing to the final against an FC Tucson side that needed penalty kicks to beat FC Golden State Force after a 2-2 draw.
In the final against FC Tucson, Calgary got a goal apiece from Ali Musse and Willy Akio. Goalkeeper Marco Carducci made a couple of timely interventions in the second half to keep the clean sheet, extending the team’s shutout streak to 535 minutes.
Calgary will host Chicago FC United in a national semifinal next weekend, riding a nine-game winning streak into the clash.
Entering the Southern Conference bracket as the No. 4 seed and wild card, the Villages SC ensured that their season lived on.
Alvaro Macias scored the winning goal in overtime, as the Villages defeated SIMA Aguilas by a 2-1 score in Saturday’s conference final.
The Villages upset host side South Georgia Tormenta FC the day before, beating them 1-0 to setup the final clash against SIMA Aguilas.
GOAL! GOAL! @TheVillagesSC strike in extra time to take a lead over @SIMA_MVAsoccer!— USL PDL (@USLPDL) July 22, 2018
Can they hold on and win the Southern Conference Championship as the No. 4 seed?#Path2Pro | #PDLPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/2zfVCVu1zz