High School Soccer

D12 HS boys’ soccer playoffs play-in round: Do or Die

Catholic League

The season finished, the standings are finalized. Judge finishes first, beating Lansdale 2-1 on Tuesday. Prep beat Egan 2-1 also on Tuesday. Roman beat Wood 2-1, LaSalle beat Carroll 4-0. Ryan surprised me by beating Bonner 1-0.

The play-in games take place this Friday, Oct. 18 when tenth place Conwell Egan will travel to seventh place Archbishop Ryan. The two teams played to a 1-1 draw in the regular season so the contest promises to be a hard fought contest. Ninth place O’Hara will travel to Bonner..

Public League A

On Oct. 15, Central defeated a ten man Bartram 6-1. Coach Ian Miller shared that his team, like an amateur Saturday league team, has had trouble with consistent numbers all year. PACS and NE tied 3-3, while FTC was able to beat Frankford by a narrow margin, 2-1. Southern lost to Fels, also 1-2. Fels, with a late season run of form, has found a playoff spot.

On Oct. 16, PACS beat Frankford 2-0, securing second place in the division on head-to head-tiebreakers with Central. Fels beat Lincoln, and Southern lost to NE.

Division A

Wins

Loss

Tie
 Northeast

9

1

1

PACS

7

1

3

Central

8

3

0

Washington

7

3

1

PREP

7

3

1

Southern

6

4

1

Fels

6

4

1

FTC

4

5

2

Lincoln

3

8

0

Bartram

3

8

0

Frankford

0

10

1

Masterman

0

10

1

Public League B

Olney and Palumbo secured their playoff berth with wins. Furness was close as well, and has every chance to dominate the division next year.

Division B

Wins Loss Tie
Olney

10

0

1

APAL

9

1

1

Furness

9

2

0

FLC

5

5

0

HSOF

5

6

0

E&S

4

6

0

Boys Latin

3

7

1

SLA

2

9

1

MLK

2

7

0

Swenson

1

9

0

Public League Playoffs

The structure of PL playoffs means that these teams have usually never faced each other before, with the middle third of A division playing the top two teams from both B and C. Last year the structure was slightly different, with only four through seven from A division making the playoffs. Those A-division teams won all the games but a number of them were close. All of these games happen today.

The fifth place team in the A Division plays against the second place C Division team, or MaST charter, a school that refuses to play in the league but still gets a playoff game. This year MaST beat Ben Franklin 3-1, and will hold this spot. The fifth place team should be Prep Charter. They will play at 3pm at the Northeast Supersite. I’m going to predict a slaughter here, with Amos Himawan up top scoring a hat trick, and good job if they do. MaST should either play in our league or not demand a playoff opportunity.

At 5pm the sixth place finisher in A, Fels (in front of South on head to head tiebreakers), will play the first place team from C, Kensington at the Northeast Supersite. Last year there were no upsets, with A Division teams winning all the play-in games. It is hard for C-Division teams to get up for the challenge since their competition all year has been significantly less strong. I suggest fielding the classic 5-5-0. Still, I think this game could feature a closer result.

The next play-in games are even more exciting. Southern, the seventh place finisher out of A, will face Palumbo, the number two seed from B. This will take place at the Simon Gratz Supersite, Hunting Park and 16th Street, at 3 pm. Expect to see a hot contest.

The last place finisher from A, FTC, will face the first place finisher from B, Olney. This game could go either way as both teams have talent. In the end, FTC’s defensive commitment should be enough, but if Olney’s speed finds an early goal, everything changes.

The winners of these four games will face the top four finishers in A on Tuesday in the quarterfinals.

3 Comments

  1. Tom Crossett says:

    Josh,
    For the life of me, I cannot follow the PL, yikes. I am a CL guy. I find it sad that a conference of 12 teams allows 10 to play in the playoffs. Not sure why we feel compelled to award mediocrity or more cruelly, bad soccer teams to make the playoffs. Too many participation awards to make kids and the parents feel better.
    Oh well.Tom

  2. Tom, you may be right, but the thing you can say about CL is that even the tenth place team rarely loses by more than two goals. In the PL games with five or more goal differences are common.
    /
    The AD at MaST charter emailed me challenging me on my language, wishing to see a team beat 7-0. I apologize, this was wrong of me. He also pointed out that they don’t “demand” a playoff opportunity, but are granted it as part of the PIAA dispensation that all teams have a chance to play in the state competition.
    /
    Like many in the PL, I would like to see MaST join our league, since it has been decided that they will have a spot in our playoffs.

  3. Thanks for all the great information. I’ve been reading up on the Public League since my son will be playing next year. We’ve spent the past 4 years watching our older son in the Catholic League, the PL is a bit more confusing to say the least.

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