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Amateur notes: Bavarians, Croatians to meet again in WSL Major final

07/19/2016, 12:00am CDT
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Patrick Ruhland (Mount Horeb/UW-Milwaukee) scored in second-half stoppage time, lifting top-seeded Bavarian SC over No. 4 seed Milwaukee Sport Club 3-2 in a Wisconsin Soccer Leagues Major Division semifinal Saturday afternoon at the Midwest Orthopedic Complex in Brookfield.

The Bavarians (13-1-1) will play host to the second-seeded Croatian Eagles (13-1-1) in the final at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Heartland Value Fund Stadium in Glendale. The Bavarians are the defending champions and have won more Major titles than any club in state history; the Croatians have won six of the past 14 championships.

Saturday's game will be the fifth match between the sides this season. The teams met twice in WSL Majors play, a 1-1 draw in a season opener Sept. 20 and a 3-1 win for the Bavarians on May 22. And they played twice in the Premier League of America, a 2-2 tie on June 4 and a 1-0 victory for the Bavarians last Wednesday.

Edison Crespo (Milwaukee Hamilton/UW-Milwaukee) and Amilcar Herrera (Milwaukee Riverside/Marquette) scored and goalkeeper Josh Rohde (Waukesha West/UW-Whitewater) recorded the clean sheet as the Eagles outlasted No. 3 seed Milwaukee Brewers 2-0 after extra time in the other semifinal Saturday in Brookfield.

Milwaukee School of Engineering's Braden Andryk (Milwaukee Marquette) and UW-Milwaukee's Reid Stevenson (Sturgeon Bay) also scored for the Bavarians, who haven't lost to a WSL foes since a 2-1 setback against the Brewers on Sept. 27 in their second match of the season. They earned the top seed in the playoffs thanks to their plus-50 goal differential; the Croatians had a plus-34 differential.

Sam Krenzien (Wauwatosa West/UW-Green Bay) and Michael Scherer had the goals for Sport Club (7-7-1), which saw five of its seven losses this season come against the Bavarians and Croatians.

In the First Division semifinals, fifth-seeded Atotonilco (12-4-5) upset the top-seeded Bavarian Reserves 3-1, snapping the regular-season champions' nine-game winning streak and ending their season with a 16-3-2 record.

Atotonilco advances to play No. 2 seed North Shore United Reserves (16-3-2), a 2-0 winner over third-seeded Milwaukee Kickers Reserves after extra time in the other semifinal. The NSU Reserves have won 13 consecutive games since Nov. 1, including a 3-0 victory over Atotonilco in the teams' regular-season matchup on April 17.


Saturday's semifinal results

No. 1 Bavarian SC 3, No. 4 Milwaukee Sport Club 2
No. 2 Croatian Eagles 2, No. 3 Milwaukee Brewers 0 (AET)
Saturday's final
At Heartland Value Fund Stadium, Glendale

No. 1 Bavarian SC (13-1-1) vs. No. 2 Croatian Eagles (13-1-1), 7:30 p.m.


No. 1 Bavarian SC Reserves 7, No. 8 Elm Grove Upper 90 Sports Pub 1
No. 2 North Shore United Reserves 4, No. 7 SC Waukesha 0
No. 3 Milwaukee Kickers Reserves 2, No. 6 Croatian Eagles Reserves 0
No. 5 Atotonilco 2, No. 4 United Serbians Reserves 1
Saturday's semifinals
No. 5 Atotonilco 3, No. 1 Bavarian SC Reserves 1
No. 2 North Shore United Reserves 2, No. 3 Milwaukee Kickers Reserves 0 (AET)
Saturday's final
At Heartland Value Fund Stadium, Glendale

No. 2 North Shore United Reserves (16-3-2) vs. No. 5 Atotonilco (12-4-5), 5 p.m.

  • Three of the four teams for the Premier League of America championship weekend are set, with the Bavarians (5-1-3) and Cedar Rapids Rampage United (5-1-3) claiming the two spots from the West Division and Toledo United (7-2-1) securing one of the East Division berths for the July 30 semifinals in Springfield, Ohio. Defending champion RWB Adria (6-2-1) has all but wrapped up the other semifinal spot heading into the final week of the regular season. PLA standings/results/schedules
  • UW's Tom Barlow snapped a tie with his seventh goal of the season in the 68th minute as the host Des Moines Menace rallied past the St. Louis Lions 2-1 in a Premier Development League regular-season finale Saturday in Iowa. The Heartland Division-champion Menace (10-2-2) will face Great Lakes Division runner-up K-W United FC (11-2-1) in a Central Conference semifinal at 4 p.m. Friday in Pontiac, Mich. The winner will face the Great Lakes champion Michigan Bucks (12-2-0) or the Thunder Bay Chill (7-2-5) in the conference final Saturday. It's the second straight year those four sides have made up the Central playoff field; last year, K-W United won the conference title and went on to win the PDL championship.
  • UW-Milwaukee's Nick Moon (Waukesha West), goalkeeper Agustin Rey (UW-Milwaukee) and the Fresno Fuego will play host to Burlingame Dragons FC (7-5-2) in a PDL Western Conference playoff play-in game Tuesday night in California. Rey has a 0.54 goals-against average and six clean sheets for the Fuego (10-3-1), who finished atop the Central Pacific Division. Moon has made six appearances for Fresno and scored in a 2-0 victory over San Francisco City FC in the team's regular-season finale July 10. Meanwhile, UW defender Elan Koenig and FC Golden State Force (8-4-2) will face host San Diego Zest FC (8-1-5) in another play-in game. The Force has won six of their past seven matches, all with Koenig in the lineup.
  • The Chicago Red Stars Reserves (6-0-1), who have several players with state ties on their roster, will play host to the Women's Premier Soccer League Central Conference playoffs this weekend. The Red Stars Reserves, the defending WPSL champions, had outscored opponents 31-1 in Heartland Division play going into Sunday's regular-season finale and will play Valley Division winner Dayton Dutch Lions (6-1-1) – with All-American midfielder Rose Lavelle and UW teammate Micaela Powers – in the semifinals. The Great Lakes Division champion Michigan Chill (8-1-1), whose roster includes Badgers goalkeeper Caitlyn Clem, face Southwest Division champion FC Dallas Women (14-0-0) in the other semifinal.

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