Twice Monthly Events Will Promote Upcoming 2014 Season
Laredo, TX (Friday, January 31, 2014): The United Soccer Leagues (USL), based in Tampa, FL released the 2014 schedule for the Premier Development League (PDL) today, with the 448-game regular season getting underway on May 3rd with the Orange County Blues FC (CA) hosting the Ventura County Fusion (CA), the BYU Cougars (UT) welcoming the Fresno Fuego (CA) and the expansion Las Vegas Mobsters (NV) playing host to the expansion Albuquerque Sol FC (NM).
A total of eight new teams have joined the PDL for 2014, with the Montreal Impact U-23’s and San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer leading the trend of professional clubs placing teams in the PDL. A pair of USL PRO clubs also have added to their development structure for 2014, with the Cincinnati Dutch Lions (Dayton Dutch Lions) and Pittsburgh Riverhounds U-23’s also making their debuts.
The Albuquerque Sol FC, which will play an inter-divisional home and away series with the Laredo Heat and the Las Vegas Mobsters continue the PDL’s expansion push in the southwest United States, while Floridians FC joins the Southeast Division and Oregon-based Lane United FC joins the Northwest Division.
Several teams have announced name changes including FA Euro (from FA Euro – New York Magic), the Midland / Odessa Sockers (from West Texas Sockers), NJ LUSO Parma (from NJ LUSO Rangers) and Puget Sound Gunners FC (from North Sound SeaWolves).
The PDL will feature 64 teams in four geographic conferences and ten divisions, with the Mountain Division added to the Western Conference following the additions of Albuquerque and Las Vegas. The Eastern and Western Conferences features three divisions while the Southern and Central contain two divisions each. PDL clubs will continue to play 14-game schedules in 2014, seven home and seven away. The defending 2013 PDL champion Austin Aztex, from the Mid-South Division, open their 2014 campaign on May 10th, when they host the Houston Dutch Lions.
Several divisional alignment shifts will come into play in 2014 and the Mid-South Division of the Southern Conference will have Mississippi (Jackson) Brilla returning to play the Texas based PDL teams.
For the hometown Laredo Heat, they will once again open their regular season versus the Houston Dutch Lions; however, this year it will be at home on Saturday, May 17th at the Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex. All Heat home games will kick-off at 8:00 P.M.
Last season, the Houston Dutch Lions and the Heat played twice and opened up the season with a 2 – 2 draw in The Woodlands and in their second match in Laredo, the Heat beat the Dutch Lions by a score of 5 – 0.
The Heat will have a favorable opening to their season as four of their first five divisional games will be played at home.
The Heat will have a non-league game on either Tuesday, May 13th or Wednesday, May 14th as they will be participating in the First Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Tournament. The location and time for this match will be announced once teams from around the country qualify for the open allocations offered by U.S. Soccer.
Laredo Heat Soccer Club 2014 Regular Season Schedule
(Home Games in BOLD, Away Games are in ITALICS)
Saturday, May 17: Houston Dutch Lions (Laredo)
Wednesday, May 21: Midland / Odessa Sockers FC (Laredo)
Saturday, May 24: at Houston Dutch Lions (Houston)
Saturday, May 31: Albuquerque Sol FC (Laredo)
Tuesday, June 3: Houston Dutch Lions (Laredo)
Saturday, June 14: at Austin Aztex (Austin)
Thursday, June 19: at Albuquerque Sol FC (Albuquerque, NM)
Saturday, June 21: at Midland / Odessa Sockers FC (Midland)
Saturday, June 28: at Austin Aztex (Austin)
Tuesday, July 1: Austin Aztex (Laredo)
Saturday, July 5: at Mississippi Brilla (Jackson, MS)
Thursday, July 10: Mississippi Brilla (Laredo)
Saturday, July 12: Mississippi Brilla (Laredo)
Saturday, July 19: at Houston Dutch Lions (Houston)
The PDL playoffs are scheduled for July 25th through July 27th and the PDL Championship Weekend is scheduled for August 1nd through August 3th.