PA Classics Enters Second Straight Finals Week Riding 11-Game Unbeaten Streak
PA Classics is back for the second consecutive year at Finals Week after finishing as the Academy runner-up last season, falling to the LA Galaxy in the championship match.
How they got to Finals Week: Like many Academy Playoff teams where the group winner was still in doubt, PA Classics came through with an all-important final-day win against Chicago Magic PSG, posting a 1-0 win to advance to Finals Week. PA Classics also beat Arsenal FC 2-1 and tied Weston FC 2-2 in the other group games.
Finals Week and Academy Playoffs History: PA Classics certainly has some experience on its side heading into this year’s Finals Week, having earned a runner-up finish in 2010-11 at the U-15/16 age group.
2011-12 Regular Season: PA Classics finished the regular season level on points with FC DELCO, but gained the second spot to the Development Academy Playoffs from the Mid-Atlantic Division by virtue of a stronger goal differential. PA Classics was 5-1-6 during division play, leading the Mid-Atlantic with six draws.
About head coach Steve Klein : Klein, a native of Evansville, Ind., spent many years playing professionally in both Major League Soccer and United Soccer Leagues. Following a decorated collegiate career at Bowling Green, Klein was drafted by the New England Revolution in 1997 and appeared in four matches that season. During the next decade, Klein plied his trade with various USL clubs including the Charleston Battery and Vancouver Whitecaps. Klein was listed at No. 24 on USLsoccer.com’s Top 25 of the Decade (2000-2010).
About the PA Classics: Created in 2004, a couple of former PA Classics players include Andrew Wenger, the No. 1 overall selection at the 2012 MLS SuperDraft by the Montreal Impact, and Zarek Valentin, who also plays professionally for the Impact.
Scoring Leader in Academy Playoffs: Joseph Julius (2)
Scoring Leader During 2011-12 Regular Season: Joseph Julius (14)
Inside the Numbers: PA Classics’ 10 draws during the 2011-12 season tied for second-most in the entire Development Academy … Joseph Julius has scored 26 goals spanning the past two seasons for the PA Classics U-15/16 side … PA Classics is currently riding an 11-game unbeaten streak.
Did you know … PA Classics head coach Steve Klein still holds the Bowling Green State University men’s soccer career record for assists (45) and points (119) … Klein registered 18 goals and 14 assists in his final collegiate season in 1996 … Klein was drafted by MLS the same year as U.S. U-17 Women’s National Team head coach Albertin Montoya and current FC Dallas goalkeeper Kevin Hartman.
U-15/16 PA Classics 2011-12 Finals Week Schedule:
Home team listed first
Tuesday, July 17: PA Classics vs. St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri, 9 p.m. CT
Thursday, July 19: D.C. United vs. PA Classics, 8 p.m. CT
Saturday, July 21: Crew Soccer Academy Wolves vs. PA Classics, 9 p.m. CT
Monday, July 23: TBD