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2018 PDL All-Eastern Conference Team

07/31/2018, 9:30am EDT
By COLTON CORESCHI - colton.coreschi@uslsoccer.com

Reading’s Molloy, Red Bulls U23’s Saramago headline selections

TAMPA, Fla. — A total of six teams - Reading United AC, the New York Red Bulls U23, Black Rock FC, the Boston Bolts, the Myrtle Beach Mutiny and the Long Island Rough Riders - are represented in the 2018 PDL All-Eastern Conference Team.

Reading United AC leads all teams with four representatives on the list, including No. 1 PDL Top Prospect Aaron Molloy who has marshalled the midfield for the club all the way to the PDL Championship this weekend. All 11 selections were voted in by Eastern Conference clubs.

2018 All-Eastern Conference Team

GK - Bennet Strutz, Reading United AC: The Cumberland University talent, helped guide Reading United AC to an undefeated regular season from the back, allowing only seven goals in 11 appearances (990 minutes) this year. He posted an amazing 0.64 goals-against average while making 34 saves at an 82.9 percent rate.
D - Kamal Miller, Reading United AC: Miller, who competes at Syracuse University and is the No. 21 PDL Top Prospect, was as instrumental as Strutz in defense for Reading. He took part in nine regular season matches for his unbeaten club (765 minutes), five of which resulted in shutouts.
D - Kevin O’Toole, New York Red Bulls U23: While much of O’Toole’s contributions to the Red Bulls U23’s 10-3-1 playoff campaign came in defense - with 12 appearances and 1,054 minutes - he also contributed offensively with a team-leading five assists. O’Toole will return for his sophomore season at Princeton this fall.
D - Prosper Figbe, Black Rock FC: A mainstay in defense for Black Rock FC during their Northeast Division-winning inaugural season, Figbe appeared in nine matches (810 minutes), earning one shutout this year. He returns this fall to Virginia for his senior season.
M - Aaron Molloy, Reading United AC: The No. 1 PDL Top Prospect - and 2017 Young Player of the Year - earned that placement in 2018, recording four goals and a team-leading four assists across 13 appearances (1,037 minutes). His play as a holding midfielder dictated the vast majority of Reading’s matches, and will likely do so for Penn State this fall.
M - Jakov Basic, Boston Bolts: A key component of the Bolts midfield, Basic made nine appearances for Boston this season (724 minutes) while scoring two goals. Hailing from Croatia, Basic returns this fall to UMass Lowell for his senior season.
M - Brian Saramago, New York Red Bulls U23: Saramago led the Red Bulls U23 from the front, scoring a team-leading 11 goals and recording one assist in 11 appearances (825 minutes). The Loyola talent’s efforts helped the Red Bulls U23 score a league-leading 45 goals this season.
M - Ricardo Gomez, Myrtle Beach Mutiny: With several deserving candidates on the squad, Gomez stood out in 13 appearances (985 minutes) for the Mutiny in 2018. The USF Bulls athlete recorded four goals from the midfield while helping lead the team to the South Atlantic Division title, their second-consecutive division trophy.
F - Ifunanyachi Achara, Black Rock FC: The team-leader in goals with eight and an additional four assists, Achara was the key danger-man for Black Rock FC in nine appearances (751 minutes). He was remarkably consistent, scoring or assisting in seven of his nine matches, and will compete in his junior season at Georgetown this fall.
F - Charlie Ledula, Long Island Rough Riders: Appearing in 13 matches (1,060 minutes), Ledula led the team in goals with 10, while also recording one assist. His efforts led the Rough Riders deep into the playoff hunt, just missing the cut in the final week. He returns to LIU Post for his senior season this fall.
F - Khori Bennett, Reading United AC: While scoring a team-leading six goals in nine matches (599 minutes), Bennett was the key goal-scorer for Reading this season. Additionally, he became Reading’s all-time goals leader with his four-goal performance in the Conference Playoffs, and will transfer to Radford University this fall.

Honorable Mentions

GK - Rafael Pereira, Western Mass Pioneers
D - Daniel Benet, Seacoast United Phantoms
D - Sylvain Coco, New York Red Bulls U23
D - Chase Rhode, North Carolina FC U23
M - Dario Jovanovski, Boston Bolts
M - Deri Corfe, Ocean City Nor’easters
M - Mauricio Pineda, Tobacco Road FC
M - Theophilus Quartey, Black Rock FC
F - Romario Piggott, Myrtle Beach Mutiny
F - Jon Ander Ibarrondo, Myrtle Beach Mutiny
F - Jacob Shaffelburg, Black Rock FC


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