New indoor soccer teams representing Tacoma and Seattle will meet in a friendly match at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Tacoma Soccer Center.
The game will pair the Tacoma Stars of the Western Indoor Soccer League against the Seattle Impact of the Major Arena Soccer League.
As the respective names imply, the MASL is the more major league with 23 franchises dotting the continent from Mexico to Canada. The WISL is a regional league, with amateur players and clubs clustered around Puget Sound and central Washington.
Despite their differences, both clubs share the need for a practice game before the starts of their respective league seasons.
“The (Stars) need lots of experience, and you have to play up, if you will,” said majority owner Lane Smith. “It’s always a good experience. I think (the Impact) needed to have a dress rehearsal, if you will. (They open with) the San Diego Sockers, which is a longtime perennial pro PASL-champion-type team coming to town a week or so off. The Impact as a team don’t have a game under the belts, and neither do we from this season.”
The MASL features familiar indoor soccer names such as the Sockers, Dallas Sidekicks and Baltimore Blast. The season runs October to March.
The Impact’s 20-game league schedule opens Nov. 8 against San Diego at ShoWare Center in Kent.
In addition to the Stars, WISL members are the Wenatchee Fire, Bellingham United, Arlington Aviators FC and the Oly Town Artesians. The season runs November to January.
The Stars will continue their preseason preparations Nov. 1 with the Northwest Indoor Soccer Invitational at the Tacoma Soccer Center. Then they will begin an eight-game league season with a Nov. 15 home match against Bellingham.