Metuchen, NJ - UWS League Two is proud to announce the establishment of a New England Conference for its inaugural 2021 season. UWS reserve teams from Connecticut Fusion, New England Mutiny, and Worcester Smiles will be joined by Massachusetts-based club Upper 90 Soccer Academy. Meanwhile, in Michigan, the Great Lakes Conference welcomes Detroit City FC’s reserve team into League Two.
Based in the North Shore of Boston, the Upper 90 Soccer Academy is designed to meet the needs of club and school players in a team setting. Many Upper 90 players have gone on to the professional level both domestically and abroad. The staff at Upper 90 is dotted with professional, college and top level high school coaches, including stalwarts Ebbie Kobiat and Pete LeVasseur.
Current NEFC coach and Director of Upper 90, Dushawne “Doc” Simpson has been developing athletes in the Boston area for many years, including a stint as assistant coach with the Boston Breakers of the NWSL. He is also the architect of two National Championship teams as coach of the Boston Aztec and Boston Breakers Reserves.
“I’m very excited to offer the North Shore community with a women’s team,” stated Club Director, Doc Simpson. “We have a lot of talent here and it is important to our staff to showcase them.”
The Connecticut Fusion began play in UWS in 2018, based out of FSA in Farmington, Connecticut. They played two seasons in UWS before the season was postponed due to Covid-19. The club intends to be competitive again in the upcoming 2021 season, playing in a very strong eastern conference. The added step of having a second team, to compete in UWS II, shows the commitment of FSA and the Fusion towards player development and their strong belief in women's soccer.
"Having a second team to both train and play at FSA is another positive step for our young franchise,” said Managing Director JP Dellacamera. “There are so many quality players in our state looking for the proper environment to showcase their talent and dedication to the game. We look for our UWS II team to push our first team to greater heights. The addition of this tier to the UWS is a perfect opportunity for our younger players to develop & one day play at the first team level. We are looking forward to 2021."
Established in 1999, the New England Mutiny is one of the oldest and most storied women’s soccer franchises in the history of U.S. Soccer. The club’s two signature moments were in 2004 when the team nearly defeated the Women’s National Team of China. In front of over 3000 fans on its home pitch, the Mutiny led 3-1 after 60 minutes before succumbing to the “Iron Roses” 4-3. In 2012, the Mutiny became the only amateur women’s team to defeat a professional women’s side when they defeated the Boston Breakers of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) by a 2-1 final. Numerous Mutiny players have gone to the professional ranks, as well as many others representing club and country throughout the world.
“UWS League 2 will provide a professional training and playing environment for the top local prospects in western Massachusetts,” stated Mutiny GM Jill Serafino. “The team will have a dual purpose of providing a pathway to pro soccer and gateway to a successful college career.”
Worcester Smiles FC is based in Worcester, MA, and will be providing a development/feeder team for their First Team in UWS League One. The addition of a League Two team not only provides support to their existing program, but additional playing opportunities to the wide talent pool in the region.
“I am looking forward to taking this hand on challenge and having this new path for developing players that will excel to the next level within the Smiles FC, said Head Coach Rocco Leone. “Having the girls take the skills today and developing their soccer career to the next level.”
Looking to create a clear pathway to the first team, Detroit City FC has added a reserve squad to the women’s side to compete in the Great Lakes Conference for the 2021 season. The conference features seven other teams that hail from the state of Michigan: AFC Plymouth, Corktown AFC, Grand Haven Admirals, Legends FC, Livonia City FC, North Oakland SC, and Rebels FC.
“Adding the reserve side is the next natural step,” said CEO/Co-Owner Sean Mann. “We are committed to the growth of the Club and creating a clear pathway to the first teams from our youth affiliates.”
The reserve team’s roster will be composed primarily of top players from Detroit City FC’s Youth Affiliates (City, Downriver, Genesee, West).
"We are extremely excited to be adding a team to the UWS2 in 2021,” women’s head coach Sam Piraine said. “Detroit City continues to grow in the community and on the pitch, and joining League Two will give our players the proper pathway to be competitive and prepared for the next step in their careers.”
Tryouts for the 2021 season are tentatively set for January but are subject to change. Interested players in the Detroit City FC Women’s side are asked to visit detcityfc.com/tryouts and fill out the informational questionnaire to be contacted by the technical staff.