Four Timbers U-23s receive all-conference honors

PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Timbers U-23s forward Brent Richards, midfielder Freddie Braun, defender Ryan Kawulok and goalkeeper Jake Gleeson were named to the Premier Development League’s 2010 All-Western Conference Team, it was announced today by United Soccer Leagues.

The Timbers U-23s led all PDL teams with four players selected to an all-conference team. The PDL’s four all-conference squads were voted on by team management from around the league.

Richards, Braun, Kawulok and Gleeson each contributed to the Timbers U-23s’ perfect 16-0-0 regular-season record, helping the club become the first team in the PDL to post a perfect record – without a loss or draw – since 1998. In 2010, the Timbers U-23s clinched their first Northwest Division and Western Conference championships.

Richards, 20, finished the regular season among league leaders in scoring and goals scored. He was the Timbers U-23s’ leading scorer with 14 goals and two assists in 12 games during the campaign. A native of Camas, Wash., Richards was selected to the PDL Team of the Week on May 19 and was a key part of the team’s offense, which scored a league-high 53 goals in 2010.

Braun, 22, appeared in all 16 matches for the Timbers U-23s during the regular season and compiled five goals and eight assists; his assist total ranked third-best in the league. He was a PDL Team of the Week honoree July 21. Braun also logged a goal and an assist in the Timbers U-23s playoff run to the Western Conference title.

Kawulok, 20, played in 14 games in his first season with the Timbers U-23s in 2010. He was named the league’s Player of the Week after recording the second hat trick in team history in a win over the Yakima Reds on June 12. Kawulok was part of the Timbers U-23s backline that allowed just six goals during the regular season – the fewest in the PDL.

Gleeson, 20, ranked among league leaders in several goalkeeping categories, including first in wins (14) and tied for second in shutouts (8). He was named the PDL’s goals-against-average champion upon the conclusion of the regular season with a league-best 0.36 goals-against average. Gleeson also received PDL Team of the Week accolades May 26.

After winning the conference championship over the weekend, the Timbers U-23s will play host to the 2010 PDL Championship on Friday and Saturday at PGE Park. They enter the four-team championship tournament as the No. 1 seed and aim to become the first team in the PDL’s 15-year history to finish as undefeated champions.

All-Western Conference Team
GK – Jake Gleeson, Portland Timbers U23s
D – Mark Lee, Kitsap Pumas
D – Daniel Scott, Kitsap Pumas
D – Mohammed Aziz, Abbotsford Mariners
D – Ryan Kawulok, Portland Timbers U23s
M – Freddie Braun, Portland Timbers U23s
M – Jordie Hughes, Victoria Highlanders
M – Cameron Hepple, Kitsap Pumas
F – Brent Richards, Portland Timbers U23s
F – Amani Walker, Orange County Blue Star
F – Jaime Chavez, Hollywood United Hitmen