Eclipse

Kennedy Atlee high fives Cheyenne Dibert, right, while Aislynn Odsather and Judith Hepburn also celebrate after Atlee’s goal for the Eclipse Soccer Club 99 girls team at the USA Cup Weekend Tournament on Saturday in Blaine, Minnesota, 2015. Photo courtesy Missy Odsather

Prep soccer got going last week for the first time in two years, much to the excitement of all those in Fairbanks. What many people may not have known is that we’re also right around the corner from a Fairbanks first: Professional soccer.

The Fairbanks Soccer Club, a professional development team founded in 2020, has announced that they’ll be launching an inaugural women’s team this season and will be hosting tryouts for both teams the weekend of May 15.

The men’s club played in the inaugural season of the Last Frontier Division in the United Premier Soccer League (UPSL) last summer. This will be the first year for the women’s team who will participate in the women’s branch of the UPSL.

“Our purpose in founding Fairbanks Soccer Club is to raise the level of play in Fairbanks and give younger generations of players a pathway to college and the professional ranks,” said FSC men’s team co-captain Kyle Renner. “We seek to exhibit the highest level of soccer Alaska has to offer, so that high quality players can continue their development, motivated young players can have a goal to aspire to, and younger generations may learn from watching the game at a high level.”

According to Renner, “The UPSL is a national professional development league sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation (USSF) and the United States Amateur Soccer Association (USASA). The league’s competitive environment raises the standard of play by bringing a professional level of coaching and competition. We are proud to represent Fairbanks and be the northern-most representative of professional development soccer in the United States.”

Tryouts for both teams will be May 15 (6 p.m. for women, 7:30 p.m. for men) and May 16 (7 p.m. for women, 8:30 p.m. for men) at Davis Turf Field Complex. There will be a $35 tryout fee and players can attend one or both tryout days.

The official schedule will be released in the coming weeks. The club expects to begin play on June 19, their last home game is expected to be Aug. 14, and their season is expected to end Aug. 21.

Contact sports reporter Hart Pisani at 459-7530 or follow him at twitter.com/hpisani91.