After a third place finish in their first season in the Western Indoor Soccer league, Tacoma Narrows FC, enters their second season trying to close the gap between them and the top two teams from last season, the Tacoma Stars Reserves and Bellingham United. Narrows will kick off their season in Bellingham this Saturday night, one week earlier than the rest of the WISL.
“Our biggest challenge this year,” said team owner Preston McDonald, “will be overcoming the odds and beating Bellingham and/or the Tacoma Stars Reserves.”
Narrows showed that the talent in the City of Tacoma could support two WISL teams by going 4-6-0, good enough for third place in the league after the Stars Reserves and Bellingham beat up on everybody. Narrows took advantage of the teams that finished fifth and sixth, the Oly-Pen Force and Oly Town Artesians, notching all four of their wins against those two teams while falling to the Snohomish Skyhawks twice.
Narrows will be led by new head coach, indoor soccer veteran Tim Bartro. Bartro played with the Tacoma Stars, San Diego Sockers and Seattle Sea Dogs, among others, and coached the Tacoma Galaxy of the PASL before the WISL was formed.
Bartro will have a nice mix of returning players and a handful of newcomers to work with. Nate Salveson, who notched just the second shutout in league history last season with an 8-0 win over the Artesians, will be back in goal with Alex Vogt, Osmin James and AJ Nitzel in front of him. Newcomers include a pair of ex-Oly Town players, Marco Monzon and Armando Castillo, as well as Casey Woodruff and Johnny Cano.
But they will be without two key components from last year’s squad: WISL veteran JC Henson, who led the team with 10 goals last season but moved back to his home state of Arizona in the offseason, and the physical presence of Brandon Blanks.
Narrows continues to grow their club, including taking on a new jersey sponsor in Half Lion Brewing and moving up from the Western Washington Premier League to the Evergreen Premier League for their outdoor play. This is a club with high ambitions both outdoor and indoor.
“We have a good amount of returning players,” continued McDonald, “as well as a nice mix of newcomers looking to help take us to the next level.”
Follow Tacoma Narrows all season long by liking their page on Facebook at Facebook.com/TacomaNarrowsFC.