| Western Mass Pioneers|
Club home page
| 2nd, Northeast Division
Playoffs: Divisional Playoff|
Premier Development League
Western Mass Pioneers is an American soccer team based in Ludlow, Massachusetts, United States. Founded in 1998, the team plays in the Premier Development League (PDL), the fourth tier of the American Soccer Pyramid, in the Northeast Division of the Eastern Conference.
The team plays its home games at Lusitano Stadium, where they have played since 1998. The team's colors are red, black and white.
Western Mass Pioneers Wikipedia
In August 1997, the USISL announced it had awarded an expansion franchise to Gremio Lusitano, an amateur soccer club based in Ludlow, Massachusetts. The USISL had set a condition for new teams which prohibited ethnic team names which prevented the club from using the name Gremio or Lusitano. Therefore, the region's newspaper, the Springfield Union-News, held a week-long "name the team" contest which resulted in the selection of Pioneers. In October 1997, general manager Rick Andre named Leszek Wrona, who had both played for and coached Gremio Lusitan, as head coach of the Pioneers. In September 1999, the Pioneers expressed an interest in moving up to the A-League after winning the USL D-3 Pro League. However, the team elected to remain in the D-3 Pro League. In 2001, John Voight replaced Wrona has head coach. Wrona would return in 2005, leave in 2007 and return again in 2008. By 2003, the team was fielding ten Junior Pioneer youth teams which competed in the Super Y-League. Through all these years, the team has remained under the ownership of Gremio Lusitano.
On December 22, 2009, following the exodus of teams from the USL to the new North American Soccer League, the Pioneers announced that they would self-relegate, and play in the USL Premier Development League in 2010.
As of October 29, 2013.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
This list of notable former players comprises players who went on to play professional soccer after playing for the team in the Premier Development League, or those who previously played professionally before joining the team.USL Second Division Regular Season Champions 2005
USL D-3 Pro League Northern Division Champions 2002
USL D-3 Pro League Champions 1999
USL D-3 Pro League Northern Division Champions 1999
Leszek Wrona (1998–2001, 2004–2006, 2008–2010)
John Voight (2002–2003)
Tom d'Agostino (2007)
Joe Calabrese (2011)
Federico Molinari (2012–present)
Lusitano Stadium, Ludlow, Massachusetts (1998–present)
Attendance stats are calculated by averaging each team's self-reported home attendances from the historical match archive at http://www.uslsoccer.com/history/index_E.html.2009: not yet available