The Evergreen Premier League club operators have voted to change the competition format for the elite men’s adult amateur soccer league beginning with the 2018 season. Previously the EPLWA had decided its champion using a balanced home / away schedule and awarding the trophy to the club that finished “top of the table.” Going forward their will be three divisions, a shorter regular season, and two rounds of playoffs to decide the league winner.
Coastal, Cascade, Columbia
Starting in 2018 the EPLWA’s 9 clubs will be divided up into three divisions. The committee in charge of planning out which club would go in which division used geography along with previous years’ performanceS to make the groupings as even as possible.
|Oly Town Artesians||Bellingham United||Spokane Shadow|
|Seattle Stars||Olympic Force||Tri-Cities Alliance|
|Vancouver Victory||Washington Premier||Yakima United|
The playoff system will include each division champion and one wild card team. The three division champions, decided over 4 matches against division foes, will be seeded 1-3 based upon the 10-match point total. The wild card entry will be seeded #4. This team will be the club that is not a divisional champion that has the highest overall point total from 10 games played. Seeds #1 and #2 will host the semifinal matches (1 v 4 and 2 v 3) and the top advancing seed will host the final all to be played the last two weekends in July. The team that wins the EPLWA Playoff Cup Final will be crowned league champion and receive the Ostrovsky Trophy.
Shorter Regular Season
The Evergreen Premier League 2018 regular season will consist of 10 matches for each club; 5 home and 5 away beginning in early May. Clubs will play home and away round-robin in each division (4 games) and then play a traveling home and away with the other 6 teams in the league every other year with consideration given to the furthest traveling teams (i.e Spokane, Vancouver and Bellingham).
The new competition format delivers some very realistic alternatives that allow for a fairly balanced schedule every other year based on parity while reducing travel for the teams furthest from each other all within a reduced calendar that will not tax players, coaches and staffs. It allows each team the flexibility to schedule a few friendlies each year against other competition. It also allows the EPLWA the flexibility to lose or add teams without causing a large shift in the balance of the league or our future scheduling.