Two Elite Local League Champions – Steel Pulse FC (Baltimore, MD) and VA UNITED (Woodbridge, VA) Promote to the EPSL

Two Elite Local League Champions – Steel Pulse FC (Baltimore, MD) and VA UNITED (Woodbridge, VA) Promote to the EPSL

Eastern Premier Soccer League Announces Two Clubs 

Two Elite Local League Champions – Steel Pulse FC (Baltimore, MD) and VA UNITED (Woodbridge, VA) Promote to the EPSL

By: Eastern Premier Soccer League

 

BALITIMORE August 6, 2020 - The

The Eastern Premier Soccer League (EPSL) is excited to announce the addition of Steel Pulse FC from Baltimore, MD and VA UNITED from Woodbridge, VA as new clubs who have earned their way into the EPSL based on sporting merit as champions of local leagues.

 

Steel Pulse FC are the 2x reigning Maryland Major Soccer League champions becoming the first club in the league’s long history to win the double – winning both the spring 2019 and fall 2019 league championships. In the most recent fall 2019 season, the club finished undefeated 9-0-3 (W-L-D) defeating 6x league champion Christos F.C. in a barnburner of a MMSL championship match 4-3. Steel Pulse FC has also competed in the Maryland Champions league, is the 2019 State Open Cup Finalist, and competed in the NESL.

 

VA UNITED and are the reigning and 3x champions of the Woodbridge Soccer League and also have be

en champions of the very competitive and highly sought Copa Avianca Megamart which is one of the most competitive tournaments in the DMV. Most notably however VA UNITED has made a name for themselves by twice advancing through rigorous local qualifying to earn a spot in both the 2019 and 2020 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup tournaments.

 

EPSL President Bill George said, “we are thrilled to add such quality clubs who have been successful on the field, who are led by quality individuals, and who are committed to giving back to their communities and gaining increased exposure for their players. Steel Pulse FC and VA UNITED have earned the right to compete in the EPSL. These clubs are joining the EPSL not because they can pay some expansion fee, rather they are joining because they earned the right based on sporting merit. The EPSL is about giving teams opportunities for success and exposure. We are also proud that Steel Pulse FC, a club largely represented by African-American and Caribbean American managers and players, and VA UNITED, a club largely represented by Hispanic-American players, adds to the diversity of the EPSL and aligns with league principles of inclusion and equity.”

 

VA UNITED Club Manager Jimmy Ramos said, “VA UNITED FC was established in 2016 and we have a talented pool of players who have played at the academy, college ranks, and professionally. We are confident in the players we have; they have the skills and desire to continue playing at a high level. Our mission is to play the highest level possible.”

 

Steel Pulse FC Owner and Manager Mike Pieterson, who lifted a USASA National Open Cup Championship as a player with the 2005 Baltimore Colts FC coached by Frank Assaro, Jr. said, “I believe dreams can be realized by an uncompromising level of commitment, discipline and old-fashioned hard work. That ethos guides the entire Steel Pulse FC family in our pursuits. We have always believed that, while we are only limited by the extent of our dreams, there is no shortcut to greatness. Nowhere have such aspirations and hard work been manifested then our interesting and unlikely trajectory in the prestigious and competitive Maryland Major Soccer League which has produced several National Champions. Not very common, in a highly competitive league like the MMSL, does a team earn promotion from the 2nd Division to become the back to back reigning 1st Division champions, in the most spectacular and historic fashion. That is the beauty and magic of the MMSL; It affords all teams the opportunity to dream and realize those dreams with hard work. It is incredibly, humbling! That open-mindedness is what Steel Pulse FC sees in the Eastern Premier Soccer league; yet again, affording teams the opportunity to earn their way to a higher level to regional and national exposure.”

 

About the Eastern Premier Soccer League

 

Formed in 2020, the EPSL is a 501(c) non-profit corporation, which is owned by the member clubs and the feeder leagues. Unlike other national and regional leagues, the clubs and feeder leagues will participate in governance including the establishing of fees, prize money, and schedule in order to keep costs down and minimize travel.  The EPSL is looking to establish agreements with other local leagues as either a promotion/relegation feeder league or through a cooperative league agreement to preserve and maintain the relevancy of elite local leagues by marketing as members of the EPSL. Through either pro/rel or this association of leagues, local leagues can collectively market themselves as entry points to higher level playing opportunities and leagues of choice for competitive amateur soccer. 

 

In July of 2020 EPSL reached historical feeder league agreements with two elite amateur soccer leagues in the Cosmopolitan Soccer League (CSL) in the New York metropolitan area and the Baltimore, MD/Washington, DC based Maryland Major Soccer League (MMSL) to establish the first regional based multi-league promotion and relegation system in the United States. The CSL and MMSL have produced US Open Cup and National Amateur champions and have some of the top amateur teams in the United States so reaching agreements with these elite leagues is an exciting milestone in the history of US Soccer.

 

The EPSL will continue to make announcements on what clubs will complete in its inaugural season in the coming weeks and months. Due of course to the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, actual return to play will be dictated by guidance from federal, state, and local health officials along with applicable soccer governing bodies.

 

EPSL clubs will be affiliated with the US Soccer Federation (USSF) and the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA), through their state associations and, as such, will be eligible to participate in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup qualifying rounds, the US National Amateur Cup and state and regional cup competitions. 

More information about EPSL can be found at epslsoccer.com or on the league’s social media platforms.


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