The STATE of Soccer in WASHINGTON
SPOKANE, WA – (August 19, 2013) The Evergreen Premier League (EPLWA) today announces its seventh accepted club for the 2014 debut season with the return of the Spokane Shadow to semi-pro men’s soccer.
The original Spokane Shadow played in the United Soccer Leagues between 1996-2005. Since then the Shadow have continued on in the youth ranks, building a premier club that competes in Washington Youth Soccer’s Regional Clubs League (RCL). (Spokane Shadow wiki) The club officially took the name Spokane Soccer Club Shadow after a youth merger.
Abbas Faridnia, Shadow Technical Director, was involved with returning Spokane to higher play. “It is extremely important for the Spokane soccer community to have a men’s semi-pro team,” says Faridnia. “It’s vital for the youth players of Spokane to have the opportunity to watch, cheer, and learn from a higher, senior level of soccer.”
Faridnia knows the opportunities that are ahead for players as well. “It’s so important for the players in our community to have the opportunity to play at this level. Whether they are college-aged players, players just out of college, older but still talented and fit players, or young players that need another development opportunity. The greater Spokane area has players that want to play at this level.”
For its part, the Evergreen Premier League is well aware of the history of the Shadow, and feels honored to play a role in their Lilac City rebirth.
“We are thrilled to have Spokane in the EPLWA,” says League Coordinator David Falk. “The fact that it is the return of the Shadow after almost a decade makes it all the more special. We will partner with the club to honor the past and build a solid future.”
Now the Shadow have work to do before kick off in May 2014. “Our two main priorities building up for the 2014 season are gaining community support through sponsorship, season tickets, excitement to watch games, etc.,” says Faridnia, “and of course building our team. Finding the right players and players that will play the Shadow style of play.”
For now, everyone can just take a moment to celebrate. Spokane is back in the game.
“The most exciting thing is that Spokane has a men’s team they can once again come out to watch and cheer for. A men’s team that can showcase the Spokane soccer community,” Faridnia says.
Spokane’s closest opponent will be FC Three Rivers Tri-Cities, 135 miles away. Wenatchee United is 169 miles west. Other distances from Spokane: Bellingham-362, Tacoma-292, Tukwila-282, Silverdale-329.
About the Spokane Shadow
The original Spokane Shadow Men were founded in 1996 and were an instant success on the pitch, winning division titles in what is now the Premier Development League of the United Soccer Leagues (USL) as well as a conference championship. Two of the most-notable players for the original Shadow were Brian Ching and Craig Waibel. The Shadow youth club was founded in 1999. The Spokane Soccer Club Shadow currently features over 1,100 players and is ranked in the top ten in the state as a premier youth club.
About the EPLWA
The Evergreen Premier League is an elite adult men’s soccer league for college and post-college age players to feature their skills on hometown clubs throughout the state of Washington. The league’s mission is to cultivate “football club” culture while providing opportunities for coaches, owners, supporters, players and towns to enjoy the sport and all of the community-building it can bring.
The EPLWA (pronounced E-P-L ‘wah’) has seven clubs accepted for the 2014 season: Bellingham United FC (Bellingham), South Sound FC (Tacoma), Wenatchee United FC (Wenatchee), Seattle Stars FC (Tukwila), WestSound FC (Silverdale), FC Three Rivers Tri-Cities (Pasco) and the Spokane Shadow (Spokane).