CHARLESTON, S.C. (Via US Club Soccer) – The Midwest Developmental League, a recently announced NPL qualifier to the Elite National Premier League (ENPL), is adding six new clubs ahead of the 2017-18 season.
Beadling SC (Pa.), Indiana Elite FC (Ind.), Indy Premier SC (Ind.), Michigan Rush (Mich.), SC Waukesha (Wis.) and SCS United (Pa.) signify both a quantitative and qualitative expansion for the league.
The Midwest Developmental League has two divisions – an East and a West. In the East, eight clubs spanning Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania make a formidable schedule:
- Beadling SC (Pa.)
- SCS United (Pa.)
- Derby City Rovers (Ky.)
- Cincinnati United Premier (Ohio)
- Internationals (Ohio)
- Columbus Crew (Ohio)
- Michigan Rush (Mich.)
- Nationals (Mich.)
In the West, eight clubs spanning Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Wisconsin round out a competitive league that is all but certain to contend at multiple age groups during the 2017 NPL Finals:
- Minnesota Thunder Academy (Minn.)
- Minnesota Twinstars (Minn.)
- Madison 56ers (Wis.)
- SC Waukesha (Wis.)
- Campton United (Ill.)
- Sockers FC (Ill.)
- Indiana Elite FC (Ind.)
- Indy Premier SC (Ind.)
The Midwest Developmental League was created as a founding member of the NPL in 2012, and has since provided club-based, regional competition for top clubs throughout the heartland. During the 2016 NPL Finals in Colorado, Campton United ‘97/’98 brought notoriety to the Midwest Developmental League at the highest level by winning the 18-U boys national championship.
In December, the league was bolstered by news that it would join other select NPLs and Boys ECNL Conferences as an ENPL qualifying competition. 14-U through 19-U boys teams will advance to the ENPL Playoffs, beginning in June 2018. The ENPL is a collaboration between US Club Soccer and the ECNL to raise standards in youth boys soccer across the country.
Quotes from new clubs:
- Denny Kohlmyer, Beadling SC President: “Beadling SC, the oldest active soccer club in the USA founded in 1898 and the most successful club in the history of Western PA soccer, is excited to join the NPL – and one that is an ENPL qualifier. The NPL will provide our players with the best developmental environment possible in US youth soccer, thereby ensuring they will reach their potential and achieve their dreams as players.”
- Novi Morajevic, Indiana Elite FC President and Director of Coaching: “Not many clubs have a chance to be invited to play in such an elite league, and I am very honored for the opportunity to showcase our club’s and players’ talents at such a high level of competition. Being part of this national championship-level league provides an amazing chance to demonstrate our players’ abilities and display our distinct talents to college coaches.”
- Joel Chalkley, Indy Premier SC Director of Coaching: “We are excited to be joining US Club Soccer’s Midwest Development League for the upcoming year. The opportunity to compete against top clubs across the region, as well as the league structure, were both very appealing for us. We are looking forward it.”
- Brian Doyle, Michigan Rush Director of Coaching: “Michigan Rush is excited to join the NPL. This is a great opportunity for our membership to play against other top teams in the Midwest, and another avenue for our players to continue their long-term development. The NPL allows us the platform to put our top players together in meaningful competition.”
- Guiliano Oliviero, SC Waukesha Director of Coaching: “SC Waukesha is very excited about joining the NPL/MDL and look forward to a very challenging playing environment that will help better develop our players.”
- Rich Hackenberg, SCS United Director of Boys Program: “We are excited to be able to bring this level of competition to our players. The mission of SCS United, and the rationale behind the merger of two strong clubs, was to create a club culture with a progressive model for boys and girls of all ages to be able to develop and participate in the highest level leagues, and gain both experience and exposure beyond our local community to a regional and national level.”