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South Jersey Soccer:
Barons Clinch Playoff Berth, Need Two Points for Division Title

Thursday, July 8, 2004

By John Thompson
South Jersey Barons Correspondent

The South Jersey Barons clinched a play-spot on Wednesday night after a 0-0 tie with the Reading rage. Going in to the game the Barons needed four points for a play-off spot. However, third placed side Cape Cod were beaten at home 4-2 by the Rhode Island Stingray meaning the Barons can finish no lower than second in the Northeast Division.

The top two teams from the Northeast Division and the Mid Atlantic Division will play for the Eastern Conference championship at a Venue yet to be determined. The winner of the Northeast Division will play the runner-up in the Mid Atlantic Division. The winner of the Mid Atlantic will play the runner-up in the Northeast Division. The victorious two teams will then meet in the Northeast Conference Final

The winner of Northeast Conference will go onto play in the national Semi-Final. Last season the Cape Cod Crusaders beat the Chicago Fire Reserves 2-0 in the PDL final in Naperville, IL which was the temporary home of the Chicago Fire M.L.S. team.

The Barons next task is to clinch the Northeast Division Title. They need two points from their remaining three games. The Barons play Harrisburg away, Reading at Home and the New Jersey Stallions away in their final three games of the season.

The Barons will look to finish the season unbeaten. As of now the Barons and the Chicago Fire Reserves (14-0-0) are the only two unbeaten teams in the PDL. The Fire Reserves have three games remaining against Kalamazoo Kingdom (6-6-1), and two games against the Thunder Bay Chill (9-5-0) to stay perfect. The Barons (12-0-3) play D3 side Harrisburg Islanders (6-4-2), Reading Rage (7-5-2) and the New Jersey Stallions (4-9-1).

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