Oly Town (0-0-0) is bringing indoor soccer back to the Capital after the Tumwater Pioneers spent one season in the PASL in 2012-13. This is in reality a whole new ballgame with organized efforts to promote the Artesians online and in local media and recruiting efforts to build a stronger squad of local players. One of the few holdovers from the Tumwater season is Matt Stalnik, a goalkeeper by trade who has seen action in the field in the Artesians’ pre-season. Stalnik scored a hat trick in Oly Town’s 6-5 pre-season loss to Seattle Sporting of the PASL. It was good news – bad news as the Artesians let a big fourth quarter lead slip away.
The Tacoma Stars (1-0-0) visit Oly to provide the home opening foe. WISL folks have high hopes that this could eventually be a fun and fierce rivalry. The clubs’ home venues are under 30 miles apart. The Stars are loaded with veteran talent and are coming off of a tough, gritty 4-3 opening win over Bellingham United FC. Kick off is at 6 PM at Olympia Indoor Soccer.
The Arteisans will have the Urban Onion beer garden, Heavenly Hog BBQ slinging grub and espresso at their opener. There will be coloring pages, tattoos and other crafts for the kids. For $1 you can help your favorite player in the Supporters’ Choice Player of the Year battle. The player with the most votes at the end of the season wins a prize pack that includes a trip to Las Vegas. There will be merchandise for sale and much more.
Wenatchee United FC (1-0-0) enjoyed a front cover story in the sports section of the Wenatchee World this week. It’s nice publicity for a club that won its first WISL match last week in Arlington, 4-2. The Fire are a fixture in Washington state indoor soccer. Now in the WISL they have plenty of new faces, a new head coach in Rafael Garcia and are looking forward to the visit from Bellingham United FC (0-0-1). The Hammers will battle a snow storm or two before they even arrive in the Apple Capital. Last week Fire goalkeeper Danny Romero was named WISL Player of the Week as his stops kept Arlington to just two goals.
Wenatchee and Bellingham are plenty familiar with each other. The clubs met yearly in the PASL when the Hammers were called the WSA Rapids. This year in the WISL both rosters feature players who battled against each other outdoors last summer in the Evergreen Premier League (EPLWA). The two sides played two incredible games last year. The Fire took a 9-8 win in Bellingham and the clubs ended in a 9-9 draw in the rematch in Wenatchee.
Wenatchee’s roster for their opener: GK: Danny Romero, Jorge Villegas. DEFENDERS: Jonathan Rodriguez, Pedro Cruz, Matthew Stefanko, Juan Barboza, Alex Espinoza, Fabian Alvarez. MIDFIELDERS: Adrian Espinoza, Hernan Mendoza, Joel Villa, Cesar Peña, Christian Nyanfore, Mauricio Perez. FORWARDS: Yonatan Rodriguez, Jesus Abrego, Jorge Rincon, and the return of Jamie Richards.