|Full name||Pittsburgh Riverhounds|
|Owner||Terry "Tuffy" Shallenberger
|Technical Director||Gene Klein|
|Head Coach||Mark Steffens|
|2014||Regular Season: 11th
|Website||Club home page|
Pittsburgh Riverhounds is an American professional soccer team based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. Founded in 1999, the club plays in the National Division of the USL Professional Division, the third tier of the American Soccer Pyramid. The Riverhounds play their home games at the 3,500-seat Highmark Stadium, located in Station Square. Their current head coach is Mark Steffens. During the 2014 USL Pro season, the Riverhounds were the official USL Pro affiliate of the Houston Dynamo of Major League Soccer. Since 2014, the Riverhounds have fielded a Premier Development League club, Pittsburgh Riverhounds U23, as part of its player development program.
- 1 History
- 2 Colors and badge
- 3 Stadium
- 4 Affiliated clubs
- 5 Future in Major League Soccer
- 6 Club culture
- 7 Broadcasting
- 8 Players and staff
- 9 Achievements
- 10 Record
- 11 Team records
- 12 Notable friendlies
- 13 History vs. Major League Soccer
- 14 References
- 15 External links
The Riverhounds were founded by Paul Heasley in 1999 as a member of the USL's A-League, now known as USL-1. They initially played their home games in Bethel Park, at Bethel Park High School's football stadium. That same year, the Riverhounds were named the A-League Organization of the Year. John Kowalski was the first head coach of the club; Justin Evans was the first player drafted to play for the Riverhounds. In their 1999 inaugural season, they advanced to the conference semi-finals in the A-league playoffs. Two years later in 2001, they reached the US Open Cup quarterfinals after beating the Colorado Rapids of the Major League Soccer and then-A-league opponent El Paso Patriots in their first two games, but the Hounds were eliminated in the quarterfinals by their second MLS opponent of the tournament, the Chicago Fire, in a two-overtime, 3–2 defeat. The Riverhounds have not reached that level of success since that time due in large part to undergoing multiple ownership and location changes.
In 2004, the club moved down to the USL's Second Division. The team also moved to Moon Township to play at Moon Area High School's football stadium for just one season. In December 2004, Heasley sold the team to Sports Facility LLC, owners of the Washington Wild Things baseball team of the Frontier League. The Riverhounds played both the 2005 and 2006 seasons at the Wild Things' minor league baseball stadium, Consol Energy Park, on the outskirts of Washington, Pennsylvania, about 30 miles (48 km) south of Pittsburgh. The franchise continued to hold soccer academies and training to youth across the Tri-State Area, but did not play during the 2007 season due to a structural reorganization. During that hiatus, the Riverhounds were sold yet again to a new ownership group.
On October 29, 2007, the organization announced another venue change. Beginning with the 2008 season, Chartiers Valley High School's stadium, located just off the Kirwin Heights exit of Interstate 79 in Pittsburgh's South Hills, would be the new home of the Riverhounds.
In 2012, the Riverhounds moved into their current home, Highmark Stadium, in Pittsburgh's SouthSide neighborhood.
The Riverhounds' games were broadcast from 2000 through 2002 on WPTT-AM (now WMNY-AM) and on Fox Sports Radio – WBBG-AM in 2003, and 2005 and 2006, and on WPIT-AM in 2008 by Chris Shovlin. Shovlin was partnered with former Riverhound midfielder Steve Bell on WPTT and with former assistant coach Paul Child on Fox Sports Radio. Shovlin and Bell won the 2003 Pittsburgh March of Dimes A.I.R. Award for Best Play-by-play. Shovlin also served as the team's Director of Publicity during the 2008 and 2009 seasons.
Only one jersey number, "99", has been officially retired by the Riverhounds. That honor was bestowed upon original owner Paul Heasley for founding the club in 1999.
Colors and badge
The Riverhound colors – black, blue, and white – were adopted before the start of the 2008 season to honor their academy and training partnership with Everton FC of the Premier League. The use of blue is an allusion to the blue collar populace of Pittsburgh.
The term "Riverhound" is derived from the expression "river dog," which refers to Pittsburgh's barge-workers. In fact, the team's mascot, AMO, is named for the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio Rivers.
- Bethel Park High School; Bethel Park, Pennsylvania (1999–2003)
- Moon Area High School; Moon Township, Pennsylvania (2004)
- CONSOL Energy Park; Washington, Pennsylvania (2005–2006)
- Chartiers Valley High School; Bridgeville, Pennsylvania (2008–2012)
- Highmark Stadium; South Side (2013–Present)
Future in Major League Soccer
In November 2007, the first supporters group of the Pittsburgh Riverhounds was formed, The Steel Army. The Steel Army held their first meeting at Piper's Pub in Pittsburgh's South Side. The group started as 5–10 local people interested in supporting the reorganized Riverhounds Soccer Club and to support the efforts of growing the sport of soccer in Western Pennsylvania as well.
Members are not only from Pittsburgh but also from states as close as Ohio to states as far away as Oregon and Florida. Membership in the Steel Army is now even international with members joining the group from Sunderland and Surrey in the U.K., as well as Bray, in the Republic of Ireland, who will be following the Riverhounds from abroad.
The section of Highmark Stadium where the Steel Army stands and supports the Riverhounds is located at the South Gate end of the stadium. The terrace there holds 502 supporters, with talks of possible expansion. The Steel Army has a fierce rivalry with fellow USL PRO clubs Harrisburg City Islanders (Sons of Susquehanna) and the Rochester Rhinos (Genesee Armada).
Players and staff
- Mark Steffens - Head Coach
- Nikola Katic – Assistant Coach
- Jeroen Walstra – Goalkeeper Coach
- AJ Cubbison – Trainer
- Mike Whiteman – Director of Sports Science
- Jason Kutney – Chief Executive Officer & Director of Youth Development
- Gene Klein – Technical Director
- Scott Gibson – Director of Academy Operations
Notable former players
This list of former players includes those who received international caps while playing for the team, made significant contributions to the team in terms of appearances or goals while playing for the team, or who made significant contributions to the sport either before they played for the team, or after they left. It is clearly not yet complete and all inclusive, and additions and refinements will continue to be made over time.
- John Kowalski (1999-2000)
- Kai Haaskivi (2001–7/2002)
- Tim Carter (7/2002-7/2003)
- Ricardo Iribarren (7/2003 - 2005)
- Gene Klein (2006–2009)
- Justin Evans (2010–2014)
- Nikola Katic (2014)(Interim)
- Mark Steffens (2014-present)
- USL Pro Soccer League Atlantic Division Champions 2004
|Year||Division||League||Regular Season||Playoffs||U.S. Open Cup||Avg. Attendance|
|1999||2||USL A-League||4th, Northeast||Conference Semifinals||Did not qualify||4,559|
|2000||2||USL A-League||7th, Atlantic||Did not qualify||2nd Round||3,808|
|2001||2||USL A-League||3rd, Northern||Quarterfinals||Quarterfinals||3,226|
|2002||2||USL A-League||4th, Northeast||Did not qualify||Did not qualify||2,274|
|2003||2||USL A-League||3rd, Northeast||Did not qualify||3rd Round||1,783|
|2004||3||USL Pro Soccer League||1st, Atlantic||Semifinals||Did not qualify||1,475|
|2005||3||USL Second Division||7th||Did not qualify||1st Round||2,236|
|2006||3||USL Second Division||3rd||Semifinals||1st Round||2,232|
|2008||3||USL Second Division||8th||Did not qualify||2nd Round||1,258|
|2009||3||USL Second Division||8th||Did not qualify||1st Round||1,178|
|2010||3||USL Second Division||3rd||Semifinals||2nd Round||941|
|2011||3||USL Pro||4th, National Division||Quarterfinals||2nd Round||1,127|
|2012||3||USL Pro||10th||Did Not Qualify||2nd Round||984|
|2013||3||USL Pro||7th||Quarterfinals||2nd Round||3,504|
|2014||3||USL Pro||11th||Did Not Qualify||4th Round||2,686|
League matches only, as of 7 September 2014
|1||David Flavius||Saint Lucia||1999–2006||56||184|
|3||Phil Karn||United States||1999-2002||23||95|
|5||Michael Apple||United States||1999-2002, 2004, 2006||21||96|
|7||Gary DePalma||United States||1999-2004||15||145|
|8||Justin Evans||United States||1999,2000,2001,2003, 2008-2009||14||101|
|10||Corey Woolfolk||United States||2003||8||26|
|12||Tenywa Bonseu||Uganda||1999–2000, 2009||7||65|
League matches only, as of 7 September 2014
|1||David Flavius||Saint Lucia||1999–2006||184|
|2||Gary DePalma||United States||1999-2004||147|
|3||Randy Dedini||United States||1999,2000, 2001-2003||115|
|4||Nathan Salsi||United States||2004–2006, 2008-2009||114|
|5||Sterling Flunder||United States||2010-||109|
|6||Jaman Tripoli||United States||1999-2003||107|
|7||Justin Evans||United States||1999,2000,2001,2003, 2008-2009||101|
|8||Jason Kutney||United States||2006, 2008-2013||100|
|9||Phil Karn||United States||1999-2002||98|
|10||Michael Apple||United States||1999-2002, 2004, 2006||97|
|July 19, 2013||Pittsburgh Riverhounds||1-4||Wigan Athletic||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania|
|7:00PM UTC−05:00||Angulo 3'||Report||Espinoza 11'
|Stadium: Highmark Stadium
History vs. Major League Soccer
- 6/27/2001 – U.S. Open Cup (2nd Round) – Colorado Rapids 0 vs. Pittsburgh Riverhounds 2 (Bethel Park H.S. Stadium)
- 7/24/2001 – U.S. Open Cup (Quarterfinals) – Pittsburgh Riverhounds 2 vs. Chicago Fire 3 (McCully Field)
- 7/16/2003 – U.S. Open Cup (3rd Round) – Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1 vs. D.C. United 2 (Maryland Soccerplex)
- 6/18/2014 - U.S. Open Cup (4th Round) - Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1 vs. Chicago Fire 2 (Toyota Park)
- "NEW OWNER ALREADY LOOKING AHEAD TO 2014 SEASON". Pittsburgh Riverhounds. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
- "PITTSBURGH RIVERHOUNDS AND HOUSTON DYNAMO OF MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER ANNOUNCE AFFILIATE PARTNERSHIP FOR 2014". Pittsburgh Riverhounds. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
- "PITTSBURGH RIVERHOUNDS SECURE PDL FRANCHISE FOR 2014 SEASON". Pittsburgh Riverhounds. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
- Price, Karen (7 May 2005). "Wild Things owners looking to duplicate success". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Sports briefs". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 29 October 2007. Retrieved 10 July 2008.
- "Riverhounds soccer team seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. March 27, 2014. Retrieved March 28, 2014.
- "Richard Nightingale Named Team President; Mark Steffens as Head Coach". Pittsburgh Riverhounds Football Club. December 17, 2014. Retrieved December 17, 2014.
- Zeise, Paul (13 July 2007). "Riverhounds kick up ante". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- McLeod, Scott (10 August 2007). "Blues Partner Riverhounds". EvertonFC.com. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- Lovell, Darrell. "Houston Dynamo affiliate with USL PRO side Charleston Battery". Major League Soccer. Retrieved 23 December 2014.
- Mcleod, Scotty. "Blues Partner Riverhounds". Everton FC. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
- Kilpatrick, David (Nov 29, 2012). "A New Stadium in Pittsburgh". New York Times. Retrieved Dec 8, 2012.
- "A Perfect Pitch to Lure MLS". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
- "USL PRO Games to Stream on YouTube". USL Pro. Retrieved 17 January 2014.
- "2014 USL Roster". USL Pro. Retrieved 27 March 2014.
- "Riverhounds make coaching change". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
- "Riverhounds Goals/Games Leaders". soccerstats.us. Retrieved 15 February 2013.