USL PRO Profile: Pittsburgh Riverhounds
The Riverhounds were founded in 1999 by Paul Heasley. The team started in the USL’s A-League, now known as USL-1. Within their inaugural year, they advanced to the semi-finals and were named the A-League Organization of the year.
In 2001 the Riverhounds reached the US Open Cup quarterfinals, but were eliminated in overtime by the Chicago Fire. In 2004, after moving down to the USL’s Second Division, the team relocated to Moon Township. By the end of 04 Heasley had sold the team to Sports Facility LLC. Once under new ownership the Riverhounds relocated yet again, this time to Washington PA, where they played in the Console Energy Park baseball stadium.
After skipping the 07 season, due to reorganization, the team was once again sold and relocated, this time to South Hills, for the 08 season. It would seem that after thirteen years of bouncing from high school football fields and baseball stadiums the Riverhounds have finally found a place to truly call home. Their 2013 season will be held in downtown Pittsburgh, at the 4th ever soccer specific USL PRO stadium.
Name: Highmark Stadium, Pittsburgh, PA
Playing Surface: Artificial
For more information check out details here
New soccer specific stadium in Pittsburgh
Owner: Jason Kutney
Game Day Operations: Sean West
Technical Director: Gene Klein
Head Coach Justin Evans has been with the Riverhounds since the beginning, but not as a coach. He was the teams first ever draft pick in 1999 and the first player. He has also played for three MLS teams, including the San Jose Earthquakes, the Chicago Fire, and the Dallas Burn (Now known as FC Dallas). In 08 Evans became the assistant coach of the Riverhounds for two years before assuming the role of head coach in 2010.
Players Of Note:
Captain: Louie Rolko donned the armband most matches.
Leading Scorer: Matthew Kassel led the hounds in scoring last season with 6 goals and 2 assists.
Other Player Of Note: Jason Kutney is more than just another player on the field, he’s the owner of the team. Last season he played 7 matches in the backfield.
The Riverhounds averaged 984 spectators last season. Their matches were played at the Chartiers Valley High School football field.
The Steel Army formed in November 2007 when the Hounds returned to USL-2. Their ranks going into the 2013 season are just under 200. With the exposure that the new stadium will bring the Riverhounds, the Steel Army expects their numbers to grow significantly in the coming season.
The new stadium is sponsored by Highmark. The jersey sponsor is #1 Cochran Automative. There are many more sponsors due in part to the fact that the new stadium was completely privately funded.
After years of ownership changes and playing on high school football fields the Riverhounds have finally found a place to truly call their home, and a beautiful home at that. This coming season is one of opportunities for the hounds. They not only have the potential to grow their fan base, and thereby their profitability, they also have the opportunity to win over a city that is well known for their love of local sport teams. To do this they have to bring more to the table than they did last season. No matter how great the stadiums view of the Pittsburgh skyline, the seats will remain empty without fireworks.